Friday, September 17, 2010

Friday's Favorite OTR

The Six Shooter: “Battle at Tower Rock” 2/21/54

By the 1950s, reel-to-reel tape had replaced wax discs as the means of recording radio shows and it became more practical to transcribe (pre-record) radio shows rather than do them live. This, in turn, made it possible for several movie stars to star in radio shows. They could record the episodes at their convenience rather than have to show up at the studio at a set time every week.

One fine example of such a show was The Six Shooter. Jimmy Stewart played Britt Ponset, a wandering cowboy who, well, wandered into an adventure each week.

Stewart narrated his adventures in a casual, folksy style that allowed the show to mix humorous tales and character studies in with more traditional Western adventure stories. “Battle at Tower Rock” is a fine example of this. Britt arrives at the town of Tower Rock, which is about to have its annual fair. The town is on edge, though, because the sisters who co-own the bank are feuding with each other and many other townspeople feel obligated to take sides.

Britt is roped into judging the preserves-tasting contest, which both sisters have entered. He soon realizes that no matter whom he picks as the winner, it’s only likely to make the matter worse. He’s put more on edge when the sisters’ husbands pay separate visits to him, each begging Britt to pick his wife as the winner—or she (either one) will be impossible to live with.

Britt is left with the challenge of judging the contest in such a way as to not have everybody making his life miserable. The story is full of humor and fun characters—a pleasant way to spend a half-hour.

Click HERE to listen or download.

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