Tuesday, October 04, 2022


      Some time back, I started listening to the original Dragnet radio program, Jack Webb's first take on a "based on real cases" police show and far less preachy than the later TV version.  I reached the last one and went looking for something else.

      X Minus One is a good science fiction series that presented some real classics -- Fritz Leiber's "A Pail of Air," Robert A. Heinlein's "Requiem" and the remarkably prescient "A Logic Named Joe" by Murray Leinster, to name a few -- but there aren't a lot of surviving episodes and it can be overwhelming.

      There's another gem that ran for years: the original Gunsmoke, with William Conrad (trust me, he plays much leaner on the radio) as Marshall Matt Dillon.  Darker and grittier than the long-running TV series, the production values are remarkable and the stories are fully-formed and well-told.  I've been drifting off to sleep with tales of Dodge City in my ears for about a week now.


Ygolonac said...

Don't know where you're sourcing from, but there's a ton of OTR over at the Internet Archive.


Lots of others (audio, with still pictures or maybe slideshows, I think) on YubTub as well, but you have to deal with leaving the video on, subscribing to "enhanced" YT services, or using an aftermarket app or program. (I use NewPipe on my Android/Fire tablets.)

My own preference is to download, just so I don't have to care whether I have Internet connectivity, but I do have a ridonkulous amount of storage space. :P

Robert said...

For me, the trouble with X Minus One was trying to drive slowly enough on the way home without being a road hazard so as to hear the whole episode before arriving. If I drove normally, I'd arrive home and fall asleep in the car before the episode ended. I worked some weird hours and was chronically sleep-deprived...

Mike V said...

2 of my X-1 stories are A Gun For Dinosaur and Skulking Permit.

And yes, William Conrad's Matt Dillion is far superior. "It's a chancey job... that makes a man watchful, and a little lonely."

Cop Car said...

It's been a lot of decades since I listened to Conrad on the radio, but he did have a wonderful voice for it. Thanks for the memories.

Windy Wilson said...

I think it was Stan Freburg who said once that "Radio was Theater of the Mind."
I am less certain that it was him who said something about sticking a paintbrush in your ear and painting a picture in your mind.