Michael Shayne, “the reckless, redheaded Irishman” was a popular hard-boiled detective created by crime novelist Brett Halliday. In the novels, Michael Shayne settled in Miami just after WWII, making crime pay by fighting it with a license and an attitude. Like Mike Hammer and Philip Marlowe, Shayne was a loner. The backstory on Mike is that he was happily married, but it hit him hard when his wife was tragically murdered. Grief stricken, Shayne loses himself in his work as a private eye, prowling the dark streets of the city, seeking out his style of revenge for injustice.
The radio version of Mike’s exploits debuted as Michael Shayne, Private Detective in the fall of 1944 with Wally Maher in the title role. In 1948, Mutual Radio debuted The New Adventures of Michael Shayne starring movie star Jeff Chandler with his adventures taking place in New Orleans. Simultaneously in 1948, Chandler was playing bashful biologist Philip Boynton, the love interest on Our Miss Brooks, proving he could handle comedy as well as dramatic roles.
Others to portray Shayne on radio included Donald Curtis and Robert Sterling. Richard Denning, who had starred for years on the radio comedy series My Favorite Husbandopposite Lucille Ball, portrayed Mike Shayne in the 1960s television version, Michael Shayne.
Here are twelve exciting episodes of Michael Shayne’s investigations, which aired on radio in 1948.
“The Case of the Left Handed Fan,” “The Case of the Deadly Dough,” “The Case of the Popular Corpse,” “The Case of the Bayou Monster,” “The Case of the Carnival Killer,” “The Case of the Constant Companion,” “The Case of the Borrowed Heirloom,” “The Case of the Eager Victim,” “The Case of the Phantom Neighbor,” “The Case of the Model Murder,” “The Case of Tahlani’s Tears,” and “The Case of the Generous Killer.” Download and start listening now!