The Boston Blackie radio show was on the air for 13 weeks in 1944 then for five years from 1945 to 1950. The original 13 week show was a sumer replacement for Amos and Andy. Blackie was played by the actor who portrayed Blackie in the movies, Chester Morris. Critics believe that Morris brought more depth of character to the part because he played the character in six films before moving to radio.
When the radio show was added to the line up on the Mutual Network, Richard Kollmar took over the role as Boston Blackie. Kollmar was known more as a soap opera actor and gossip columnist Dorothy Kilgallen’s husband. Kollmar was a solid actor who brought a different side, a more refined side, to Blackie.
Star of the Nile - 1944 - Chester Morris
Boston Blackie is on the same train with the Star of the Nile, a very large emerald on the way to New York for an exhibition. Inspector Farraday thinks that Blackie might not be able to resist just one more heist. He also thinks that Blackie won’t be able to resist a beautiful woman traveling on the train as well, Helen Carew.
Mr. Stephens, the man carrying the emerald loses it after talking to Blackie. Of course, Farraday assumes Blackie stole the emerald. If Blackie didn’t steal the emerald, who did? Miss Carew? Mr. Stephens? Someone else?
Three Way Split - 1945 - Richard Kollmar
Blackie meets with Mary for breakfast to discuss a letter he received from Ann Martin, a gangsters wife. The woman wants $50,000 from Blackie. He heads out to visit Ann who thinks that he knows where the $50,000 is hidden. The money was stolen by Ann’s husband and she wants it but then she threatens Blackie if the money turns up and he goes to the police.
The next day, Blackie and Mary read that some of the Martin associates are being released from prison. They deduce that Ann wants to get to the money before the associates. He goes back to visit Ann after talking with the jailbirds but is greeted by Inspector Farraday because Ann is dead. Who killed Ann and why? Where is the $50,000?
Killer Lightening - 1948 - Richard Kollmar
Martin and Hester are discussing something very serious. A murder. Her husband’s murder. They discuss how to kill her husband and all of the things a killer forgets, how to murder someone without leaving a trace. A bad storm is coming and it seems that Martin and Hester are going to leave an unconscious Donald, Hester’s husband, in a field with a lightening rod.
Donald’s doctor calls Blackie to check into what he believes is a murder. With nothing more than a hunch to go on, Blackie begins his investigation so that the killer or killers can be brought to justice.