John Francis O'Connell

Created by Ken Krippene

Warren William starred as JOHN FRANCIS O'CONNELL, probate attorney and investigator who specialized in tracking down the missing heirs and benefactors of some rather bizarre bequests, in Strange Wills, a short-lived 1946 radio series from Hollywood's Teleways/Michelson Syndication.

The stories, all allegedly based in fact, were all over the place, from relatively dry legal matters involving eccentric bequests to all-out tales of insanity, horror and buried treasure, were scripted by writer/lawyer Ken Krippene, who had apparently compiled a series of script ideas from last will and testament cases he'd worked on over a ten-year period.

Warren William, of course, had a long career playing various detectives for film (Perry Mason, Philo Vance, The Lone Wolf and even a version of Sam Spade in the 1936 trainwreck Satan Met a Lady) before moving to radio.

Strange Wills was noted for its unusually high production values, and the cast included not only Williams as its star (and first person narrator) but also Howard Culver, Carleton G. Young and Lurene Tuttle, and guest stars included many of the West Coast's finest voice talent of the time.

Great title, by the way.

RADIO

  • STRANGE WILLS
    (1946, Teleways/Michelson Syndication)
    Writers: Ken Krippene
    Director: Robert M. Light
    Producer: Carl Kraatz
    Starring Warren William as The Investigator
    Also starring Lurene Tuttle, Carleton G. Young, Howard Calver,
    Guest stars: William Conrad, Peggy Webber, Will Wright, John Brown, Marvin Miller
  • "Audition/Sales Presention" (January 1, 1946)
  • "Mad Concerto" (June 8, 1946)
  • "Alias Doctor Svengali" (June 15, 1946)
  • "Black Interlude" (June 22, 1946)
  • "Lady And Pirate" (June 29, 1946)
  • "Prince Of Broadway" (July 6, 1946)
  • "Treasure To Starboard" (July 13, 1946)
  • "One Shining Night" (July 20, 1946)
  • "Midnight On Moor" (July 27, 1946)
  • "Seven Flights To Glory" (August 3, 1946)
  • "Girl From Shadowland" (August 10, 1946)
  • "Madmans Diary" (August 17, 1946)
  • "Emeralds Come High" (August 24, 1946)
  • "Emily" (August 31, 1946)
  • "Margin For Love" (September 7, 1946)
  • "They Met In Monte Carlo" (September 14, 1946)
  • "Girl In Cell 13" (September 21, 1946)
  • "So Deep Stream" (September 28, 1946)
  • "Misers Gold" (October 5, 1946)
  • "East Of Hudsons Bay" (October 12, 1946)
  • "Autograph Girl" (October 19, 1946)
  • "Penthouse Orphan" (October 26, 1946)
  • "Singapore Liz" (November 2, 1946)
  • "Crosswinds" (November 9, 1946)
  • "Dance Director" (November 16, 1946)
  • "Death Is My Destiny" (November 23, 1946)
  • "Killer And Saint" (November 30, 1946)
  • "Portsmith Square" (December 7, 1946)

Report respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.


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