Manage episode 327858156 series 2494501
Carlton E. Morse’ I Love A Mystery first took to the air Weekdays at 3:15PM on NBC’s West-Coast network in January of 1939. Michael Raffetto starred as Jack Packard, head of the A-1 Detective Agency, with Barton Yarborough as Texan Doc Long, and Walter Paterson as the British Reggie Yorke. The show told of three world travelers in search of action, thrills, and mystery. From the ghost towns of wind-swept Nevada, to the jungles of vampire-infested Nicaragua, they righted wrongs, rescued women, battled evil, and explored unknown parts of the globe. By that autumn it was airing nationally. The show ran from the west coast for five years, first over NBC’s Red Network, then its Blue, and then CBS. It went off the air at the end of 1944, but was revived in the spring of 1948 on ABC and then from New York for Mutual Broadcasting in October of 1949. It ran for three more years, this time starring Russell Thorson, Jim Boles, and Tony Randall, as Thorson remembered. Jack Packard was a hero with quiet strength. Once a medical student, he shrugged off superstition in favor of logic. Reggie Yorke was educated, strong, and had the British stiff upper lip. Doc Long was a red-headed alley fighter from Texas who defied the laws of chance and loved women. Three characters could be murdered in a single episode. People were killed in ghoulish, imaginative, and sometimes mystifying ways. Throats were ripped out by wolves; there were garrotings, poisonings, and mysterious slashings. Although the serial went off the air in 1952, in May of 1954 a new audition record was produced for CBS in Hollywood. It starred Thorson, Ben Wright, and Parley Baer.