Old Radio Programs

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The Avenger

The Avenger originated from Long Island, NY-based station WHN and was broadcast over a time-span of 62 weeks. It also seems to have aired on many stations across the United States as a transcription series. The 62 weeks refer only to the period during which the program aired, not the number of shows. There were apparently a number of preemptions, due to coverage of sporting events. Most likely, the series consisted of a then standard run of 26 half-hour episodes (plus repeats). Unfortunately, despite the fact that the program was recorded for syndication, the only remaining artifacts of the show are seven scripts. All of these are from the first nine weeks of the show, one of which is an original script entitled Tear Drop Tank. The others are The Hate Master, River of Ice, Three Gold Crowns, The Blood Ring, The Devil’s Horns, and The Avenger. All are based on the magazine novels of the same name, with the exception of The Avenger, which is based on the second adventure, The Yellow Hoard. None of the scripts mentions the production crew or cast—in fact, the first three surviving scripts do not even list the authors. The final four remaining scripts (judging by the airdates listed) were all written by Maurice Joachim. Maurice Joachim was an actor and radio scriptwriter, who wrote episodes of the 1940s WMCA-produced Doc Savage series. It’s quite likely he also acted on the Avenger, as he was reputed to be a highly versatile actor -– in the mid-1930s he hosted the Majestic Master of Mystery program, and played all the parts himself. Only Joachim and the organist were credited in the script, which had the announcer give the credit “with original music by Dick Ballou”. These directions specified a Morse Code motif for the music, which was echoed in the sound effects. In the scripts earliest scripts, the "Avenger Hum" is mentioned within the episodes, as in them the impression is given that Richard Benson has a radio unit surgically implanted inside him, and thus his entrances are heralded by a carrier wave tone. This somewhat unsettling idea is dropped at some point in the series, with the novels' compact belt radios used instead. [wikipedia]


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