The Shadow Radio Drama
The unmistakable introduction from The Shadow radio program has earned a place in the American idiom: "Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!" AND . . . While you were sitting in front of your radio, were you reminded to, "Don't that dial!"?
You might have heard about The Shadow online. It was a collection of serialized dramas, which originated in pulp magazines, then on 1930's radio and then in a wide variety of media. It followed the exploits of the title character, a crime fighting vigilante in the pulps, which carried over to the airwaves as a wealthy, young man about town with psychic powers with a companion and partner, Margo Lane.
The Shadow was fully developed and transformed into a pop culture icon by pulp writer Walter B. Gibson. The radio drama was well remembered by many for its episodes voiced by Orson Welles, who was the voice of The Shadow from September 1937 to October 1938. He was succeeded by Bill Johnstone.
The Shadow debuted on July 31, 1930, as the mysterious narrator of the Street and Smith radio program Detective Story Hour.
Over the years, the character evolved. On September 26, 1937, The Shadow radio drama officially premiered with the story "The Deathhouse Rescue," in which the character had the power to cloud men's minds so they cannot see him.
Remember the female character, Margo Lane, introduced into radio drama, The Shadow? Margo Lane was played by Agnes Moorehead, among others as Cranston's, the Shadow's, love interest, crime solving partner and the only person who knew his identity as The Shadow.
Lane was described as Cranston's friend and companion in later episodes, although the exact nature of their relationship was unclear. In the early scripts of the radio drama the character's name was spelled "Margot." The name itself was originally inspired by Margot Stevenson, the Broadway ingÃ©nue who would later be chosen to voice Lane opposite Welles' Shadow during the 1938 Goodrich Summer Season of the Radio Drama.
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