Author Archives: Bob Stepno

About Bob Stepno

mild-mannered reporter who fell deeper into computers and the Web during three trips through graduate school in the 1980s and 1990s, then began teaching journalism, media studies and Web production, most recently as a faculty member at Radford University.

Flying reporter & a woman in charge

“What a story! Boy this is great!” — reporter Jimmy Gifford Here’s a mystery from 1932, the days when radio drama was relatively new, when flying the air mail was still an adventure, and so was newspaper reporting. The broadcast … Continue reading

Posted in 1930s, adventure, crime, Police, reporters, romance | Leave a comment

A bit critical

“I can save time if I write my review on the way to the theater.” –Mortimer Brewster http://otrrlibrary.org/OTRRLib/Library%20Files/B%20Series/Best%20Plays/Best%20Plays%2052-07-06%20(05)%20Arsenic%20and%20Old%20Lace.mp3 Arsenic and Old Lace (IMDB), a hit play and Capra film, was done by several radio anthology series. Here it is by … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s, adaptations, Capra, critics, movies | Leave a comment

Not a Christmas Musical — Media Madness

https://archive.org/download/OTRR_Lux_Radio_Theater_Singles/Lux_Radio_Theatre_45-01-29_468_Lady_in_the_Dark.mp3 “America’s most modern fashion magazine,” complete with background clicking typewriters, is the scene of the story “Lady in the Dark.” (I stumbled on it earlier this week while researching the much different drama “Lady in the Lake.”) Long before … Continue reading

Posted in 1940s, adaptations, magazines, marriages, women | Leave a comment

Pre-Christmas Noir

https://archive.org/download/OTRR_Lux_Radio_Theater_Singles/Lux_Radio_Theatre_48-02-09_602_Lady_in_the_Lake.mp3 I was so happy when I hit the point in Lux Radio Theatre’s February 1948 production of “The Lady in the Lake” when detective Philip Marlowe needs some information, picks up the phone, calls a friend at the newspaper, … Continue reading

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Detective as fact-checker versus libel case

Detective Philip Marlowe meets a whole Hollywood trade paper crew in “The Green Flame” from March 1949 … https://archive.org/download/OTRR_Philip_Marlowe_Singles/Philip_Marlowe_49-03-26_ep026_The_Green_Flame.mp3 It’s a colorful tale. We get matches that burn with a green flame, a note in blue wax pencil, and various … Continue reading

Posted in 1940s, columnists, detectives, editors, newspapers, publishers | Leave a comment

A case of mistaken identity

https://archive.org/download/OTRR_Philip_Marlowe_Singles/Philip_Marlowe_50-09-29_ep103_The_Big_Book.mp3 In Raymond Chandler’s novels or the 1947-51 radio series they inspired, Philip Marlowe wasn’t the kind of detective who plays for the headlines. “What’s the news in that?” he asks at the end of this 1950 adventure titled “The … Continue reading

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A cemetery scoop

It’s October, and as Halloween approaches, I am reminded that I have not posted many stories from radio’s always popular macabre or thriller series… Might as well start early. “Scoop,” the December 8, 1942, episode of the scare-filled late-night radio … Continue reading

Posted in 1940s, adventure, Drama, publishers, reporters, suspense | Leave a comment