Candy Matson, one of a few female detectives but the most popular, certainly on the west coast, emanating out of San Francisco, was more popular/famous during the Golden Age of Radio than
Each episode opened with the ringing of a phone, then a sultry voice saying: “Candy Matson,
Yukon 2-8209”. Then a great organist playing the theme song. So reminiscent of all “Golden Age of Radio” radio shows, the addition of music.
In the show, Candy resided in one of the best present-day zip codes in the country; Telegraph Hill. She had a beautiful apartment with a great view of all of San Francisco. She was a single, professional woman, but cash was not an issue. She had love interest who was not as compliant as Candy would want, albeit a love interest.
Now, Natalie Parks Masters played the character Candy in the show. (Guess who her real-life husband was. Read on.)
Her side kick Watson was a photographer, (played by Jack Thomas) and Lieutenant Ray Mallard (played by Henry Leff) of the San Francisco Police Department, Homicide Division, was the non-obedient/noncompliant lover boy. Mallard did have, though, a character flaw as seen by Candy — Mallard had a fixation with real-life performer/singer Tex Acuff. Mallard would not marry her until he became a captain in the police department so Candy could stop working. Otherwise, he wouldn’t be able to support her in the fashion to which Candy was accustomed.
Now, this was, I think, pretty honorable in present-day thinking. But, fans of old time radio, remember, this was 1949-1951. The mores of the era would demand this. It’s only “honorable” because my persona has been infected with the passage of time with generational differences. I think, instead of living off her money and taking it easy, current thinking by some, even though expected, is still “honorable”. But this was the late ‘40’s, early ‘50’s. Not until the last show did Candy convince LT Mallard to marry her. Guess what happened? Well, Lieutenant Mallard, of course, became Captain Mallard of one of the best police departments in the country, both then and today.
Now, why did the show only last 92 episodes, with only 14 episodes surviving? ANSWER: A few and complexed reasons in the era. No, not at all because of Rembrandt Watson. (READ ON AND FIND OUT TO WHAT I HAVE REFERENCE.)
- There was constant reference to San Francisco. All the scenes, buildings, restaurants, et cetera, were situate in this wonderful city. Wonderful, though, to whom? No to the rest of America. The vast majority of good ole USA never stepped foot out of their own state. Certainly, they rarely went to the west coast let alone California. The honoring of this great city was lost to only the residents of San Francisco. Not even some of the residents of California and the continuous states had ever been there.
- LT. Mallard would only reference San Francisco/west coast universities and professional sports’ teams.
- Additionally, KNBC Radio would air this entertainment master piece (no pun intended to Monty and Natalie) with no regularity. Now, when I say “regularity”, I mean just that. How about a TV show being aired with only a day’s notice, maybe even that day notice? The night and the time was never the same. The KNBC Radio schedulers wanted this show to fail, and they had the power to do just that.
- The criticism of the show was always: Candy Matson Show could never find a national sponsor. Of course not. How could that ever eventuate? Slim, very slim.
Candy, whenever she interviewed a prospective client, was not hesitant to invoke the subject of her fee to be paid up front. As a salesman vending insurance, I always spoke about the cost at the end. Not upfront. I was taught to talk about yourself and the benefits of the product, then you would get to the possible deal breaker. Hopefully, this deal breaker potential occurs less frequently than the consummation of the transaction.
This beautiful blonde sleuth, was living in a very large city with many homicides, ostensibly, occurring daily, and Mallard would, coincidentally, be assigned to the same case. Candy, of course, trying to defend the obvious culprit; Mallard, certainly, trying to convict Candy’s client. Can you spell “time and memorial?” How about “inevitable?”
Candy, on the other hand, never sold herself on how competent she was. Her prospective clients never, ever saw money, to be an impediment to the consummation of the sale.
Keep in mind; this show was, in some ways, a fairy tale. But what present-day day-time serial, soap, is not a fairy tale? Could it have happened in real life? Of course it could have. Query: could it happen in every episode, day after day, episode after episode, NO. IF YOU BELIEVE IT COULD, I HAVE A BRIDGE…………
The supervising writer of the script just happens to be Monte Masters, Candy’s real-life husband. (OOPS, DID I TELL YOU TOO EARLY? DO I STILL HAVE YOUR ATTENTION?) As a wife and a husband, I know, we can dream all we want, about a beautiful real-life actress, beautiful private detective character in a major show on the west coast. All married men can hope/wish/have positive thoughts about meeting/marrying someone just like Candy.
The plot was never the main focus, but the dialogue is unforgettable. The back-and-forth banter and staccotic nature of the script was unique.
Monty Masters was lucky enough to have a mother-in-law, the founder of Old Time Radio Foundation utters sheepishly tongue in cheek. How did this play into the future of the show? Read on.
Mr. Masters originally intended the lead actor to be himself. Now, remember this is 1948, a year before the actual airing of the show. They had to plan the make-up of this show. Enters Mrs. Parks. Yes, you’re right, the mother of Natalie Parks Masters. Now, what mother or father, doesn’t want the best for their daughter, or son. Family pressure eaked its beautiful head. Yes, mother had a great image of her only daughter to be the show’s lead. What mother wouldn’t?
Obviously, this accounts for the lead to “Candy fought her own fights, solved her own cases, and gave as good as she got.”) No brainer, in retrospect.
In real life, to show you how some mates don’t realize how great they are truly blessed, Monte Masters died at 59 years old due to alcohol. Mr. Masters passed rather early, even for the era of life expectancy. His families/friends said at the time: Monty looked at least 20 years older than he really was.
Some people, like in many of our families, have relatives with this devastating gene. Some people find solace in sports (most times, a rather benign activity), computers, their deity; still others are directed to illicit activities, chemicals, sports betting, et cetera. Respectfully, you fill in the “et cetera”.
Many people, including many of our brothers/sisters in nursing, hospital, veteran and hospice care facilities find much enjoyment in watching movies on old time radio foundation’s bulk discounted, brand name tablets from 7″ to 18.4″ with flash drives (thumb drives) and SSD’s (Solid State Devices).
The announcer of the show, as even today, sets the tempo of the impending entertainment, the show. Dudley Manlove, who in his own right, was a rather famous character actor. He was wonderful. Now, not as good as George Fenneman of the Groucho Marx Show on television, but Manlove was wonderful, nevertheless.
As you know, the Old Time Radio Foundation gives 100% of the profits to the mission. Our mission is, primarily, to gift to every residential veteran facility’s residents in the country the ability to listen to old time radio shows on MP3 players, cushioned headset, with a 3-ring binder with instructions and content of what’s on the MP3 player. There are 4500 episodes, with approximately 100 shows including many genres (comedy, detective, talk, news of the era, World War 2 broadcasts, et cetera).
For bedridden warriors of long ago, we provide a portable speaker in lieu of the headset. It’s bad enough their body physically is not doing so great. The hero who is bedridden usually has a solid mind, but they would never want a headset. The portable speaker is a fantastic substitute. The speaker can be set to shuffle (random play) with only the volume control being monitored by the aide, so as not to disturb, possibly, their roommate.
We offer for sale on our e-commerce site, flea markets, malls, air ports, high-volume foot traffic, other products. How about movies only by the genre, i.e., comedy, detective, drama, et cetera?
We offer SSD’s, with 1 T capacity (1,000 gigs), is able to hold approximately 1,800 full-length 30s, 40s, 50s movies. We also offer many other storage capacity devices, for example, flash drives, microchips, et cetera.
If you load a current 2016 movie (which we would never do due to copyright protection) because of the pixel quality requirements, the number is approximately 400 not approximately 1800.
Now, Candy’s sidekick Rembrandt Watson, photographer, was the first openly gay performer in the “Golden Age of Radio”. Now, when I say openly, I don’t mean to imply Rembrandt held hands with OR ever spoke to another gay male. After all, this is San Francisco, even then, was the go-to city in America. Rembrandt was the pioneer in presenting the sound of someone who was NOT interested in the opposite gender.
In the early episodes, Rembrandt would drink alcohol much too often. Natalie Parks, a real-life teetotaler, did not think this was so funny or entertaining. This imbibing soon ended. This change afforded her side-kick to play his role to Watson’s own talent level, not some script which portrayed him as a gay drunk. This, even in the ‘40s, ‘50’s, would be seen as homophobic.
Point in fact, Natalie was seen by her friends and family members as a very generous, clever, feminist. She was also considered humorous, cynical and driven. Sounds pretty good to us here at the Old Time Radio Foundation. Candy was a no nonsense radio noir.
During the show, Candy would often say: “If you like that view, wait ‘til I turn around.” Natalie Parks and Candy Matson, both, were blonde, beautiful, shapely and intelligent.
Natalie Masters died on February 9, 1986, she was 70 years old. What a great voice of the era, a true-life gracious creature that has walked on this earth.
I hope you visit us at: OldTimeRadioFoundation.com
I hope you visit us soon.
Have a great day with your families and friends. We can always count on them; if not, maybe they don’t deserve to be considered “family” OR “friends.”