Karl Craven

Created by Jonathan Latimer (1906-1983) "From the way her buttocks looked under the black silk dress, I knew she’d be good in bed." -- one of the great opening lines in detective fiction. A true hardboiled classic, Jonathan Latimer's Solomon's Vineyard, featuring hard-as-a-rock St. Louis private eye KARL CRAVEN (at least, that's what he claimed … Continue reading Karl Craven

Mollé Mystery Theatre

Radio Anthology Series (1943-48, NBC) The competition in the forties and fifties between various mystery radio shows was fierce... and confusing. How confusing? All three major networks had crime or detectives shows titled Mystery Theater (or Mystery Theatre). But the first and arguably the best (and the one under discussion here) was NBC's version, the only real … Continue reading Mollé Mystery Theatre

Mystery Playhouse

Radio Anthology Series (1944-46, AFRS) MYSTERY PLAYHOUSE was a radio anthology series of reruns (and possibly a few original) crime dramas. The show aired on the American Forces Network from July 1944 to June 1946, specifically for the purpose of entertaining the troops serving during the war. Because it was mostly repeats, the producers had … Continue reading Mystery Playhouse

Bill Crane

Created by Jonathan Latimer (1906-1983) Jonathan Latimer's first book, 1935's Headed For a Hearse, was one of the first hard-boiled screwball comedies, following closely on the heels of the previous year's The Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett. But where Hammett only toyed with the idea, contenting himself with cocktails and banter, Latimer went whole hog. … Continue reading Bill Crane

Don Corey, Jed Sills, Chris Devlin & Dr. Carl Hyatt (Checkmate)

Created by Eric Ambler In Checkmate, a fondly-remembered television show from the early sixties, DON COREY and JED SILLS run a very fancy, very expensive, high-tech San Francisco detective agency whose aim is "to thwart crime and checkmate death (by) stopping the slide downhill to tragedy." It was a lofty and intriguing concept, arguably ahead … Continue reading Don Corey, Jed Sills, Chris Devlin & Dr. Carl Hyatt (Checkmate)