• U.S.

Radio: Dark Doings

2 minute read

Last week the Chicago Tribune and MBS got together to give U. S. citizens the low-down on fifth columnists via a program called Wings For America. Using the Orson Welles-Martian Invasion technique, the Tribune-MBS aerial brain storm concerns itself with the patriotic struggles of a mythical Tribune newshen named Lorna Carroll to overthrow a bunch of Putschers calling themselves the “Advance Front.” With solemn Elissa Landi playing Lorna, dapper Phillips Holmes as an imaginary MBS commentator, the first installment of Wings For America, which is due to run serially for the next nine weeks, indicated that before the show’s run had ended, it would be firmly established as the dizziest radio drama ever confected.

Starting out with a meeting conducted by Commissar Leader of the Advance Front, Wings For America wanders into a radio studio where Lorna, thinly disguised as Miss X, is about to tell all about her investigations of the Commissar’s Desperate Desmonds. Right off the bat a smoke bomb goes off in the studio, creates such an uproar that one of the Commissar’s boys is able to make off with the Chicago Police Department plans for combating sabotage of American Defense preparations hitherto in the keeping of Lieut. Mulaney.

To make matters worse, the Commissar manages to sneak in on Lorna’s wave length and clutter up the air with Advance Front propaganda. Betimes Lorna squeezes in a few words, but presently one of the Commissar’s agents, who has been lurking in the studio doubling as an usher, grabs her and backs out of the studio with Lorna at the point of a gun. Promptly a city-wide search is begun during which Lorna reveals her presence in a flower shop by blinking out a bit of code with the florist’s neon lights. Finally released, a little groggy from sniffing Lewisite gas,* Lorna winds up her stint by getting back the plans, telling her boy friend, the MBS announcer, that “faith and love will always endure.” This week: Lorna Prevents Saboteurs from Blowing Up a Milwaukee Plant.

*Three drops on the skin are fatal.

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