Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Thursday, July 10, 2014


Since today is the 100th birthday of Superman's co-creator Joe Shuster, I'd thought we'd jump back in time to when Sup ruled the radio waves.  The Adventures of Superman ran from 1940 until 1951, first as a syndicated from WOR-New York, then (from late 1942 to mid-1949) on the Mutual Broadcasting Network, and finally on ABC radio.  The episodes -- all 2068 of them -- stretched, at various times, from 15 to 30 minutes each and the program was aired as often as three or five times a week.  The some-time mild-mannered reporter struck a chord with american kids of every stripe.  (I remember one of the gang members in Irving Shulman's The Amboy Dukes fantasizing about being Superman --something that experts at the time pointed out added another touch of reality to the characters.)

Superman's famous introduction was voiced by Jackson Beck, who sometimes added his talents to the show as Bruce Wayne's butler Alfred on  episodes that also featured Batman.  The Caped Kryptonian (I can't call him a Kryptonite now, can I?) was originally played by Bud Collyer, perhaps best known now as the game show host of Beat the Clock and To Tell the Truth.  Joan Alexander played Lois Lane.  (Interesting tidbit:  Alexander's daughter is mystery writer Joan Stanton Hitchcock.)  Cub reporter Jimmy Olson was played by Jackie Kelk ("Georgie Bassett" in the Our Gang series, "Homer Brown" in The Aldrich Family.)

So, happy birthday, Joe Shuster!  

And, for Truth, Justice, and The American Way, let's enjoy these early episodes!

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