Adventures of Philip Marlowe
"Get this and get it straight: crime is a sucker's road, and those who travel it end up in the gutter, the prison, or the grave..."
Author Raymond Chandler introduced mystery fans to hard-boiled gumshoe Philip Marlowe in his first novel, "The Big Sleep," in 1939. Chandler's "white knight in a trench coat" would go on to become one of the most popular sleuths in the history of the crime fiction genre, and the success of subsequent novels soon spread into other mass media as well - most notably the classic 1944 film noir, "Murder, My Sweet" (adapted from Chandler's "Farewell, My Lovely"), which starred former movie chorus boy Dick Powell as the detective. Powell was also instrumental in bringing the Marlowe character to radio, reprising his screen role (along with co-star Claire Trevor) in a "Lux Radio Theater" production of the film over CBS Radio on June 11, 1945.
Philip Marlowe's first regular weekly series, "The Adventures of Philip Marlowe", premiered over NBC Radio June 17, 1947 as a summer replacement for "The Bob Hope Show," and starred actor Van Heflin as Chandler's famous creation. The author wasn't particularly thrilled with either Heflin or the series, remarking to his contemporary, Erle Stanley Gardner (creator of Perry Mason), "It was thoroughly flat." The Marlowe character would then return to the airwaves on September 26, 1948 in a series for CBS with radio veteran Gerald Mohr as the titular sleuth. (Chandler grudgingly admitted satisfaction with this incarnation, remarking to one of the show's writers that Mohr's voice at least "packed personality".)