Candy Matson, YUkon 28209 (1949-1951) was a weekly OTR drama series noted for its strong, intelligent, no-nonsense female protagonist. Candy Matson runs her private investigation business from a penthouse atop Telegraph Hill in San Francisco, California. Sidekicks Rembrandt Watson (eccentric photographer) and Lieutenant Ray Mallard (San Francisco Police detective and love interest) assist as she solves murders and mysteries in her own intelligent and witty style. Candy Matson, YUkon 28209 is significant because it was a ground-breaking female investigator anthology series with a strong lead character, featured local San Francisco locations and references, included gay and Asian characters, provided a compelling alternative to the popular male detective radio genre, and was the best of the popular female detective programs.
Total episodes: 91 (plus April 1949 audition episode and September 1952 series revival audition episode)
Surviving episodes: 14
Inventory of episodes
First Three Surviving Episodes
The Donna Dunham Case
Episode 0a, Audition episode, 4 April 1949
AKA "Donna Dunham's Death." Candy solves a jealous-lover murder and nearly falls victim herself. Audition episode uses "EXbrook 29994" rather than "YUkon 28209."
The Cable Car Murder Case
Episode 2, 7 July 1949
The man riding next to Candy on a cable car is silently shot to death.
The Fort Ord Story
Episode 14, 23 September 1949
Candy is the queen of the Non-Commissioned Officers Ball, where a double murder occurs.
Both crime and detective stories were popular Old Time Radio (OTR) genres from the 1940s-1950s. This popularity coincided with rising concerns for emerging criminal activities, especially organized crime, and containment efforts at all levels. A number of male, and female, detective radio series focused on this interest. Candy Matson, YUkon 28209 was a compelling alternative to the popular male detective radio genre, and was the best of the popular female detective programs.
Candy Matson was developed by husband and wife Monte and Natalie Masters. They planned their radio series with a male lead, but Natalie's mother persuaded them to cast Natalie as the female protagonist. The series was changed to highlight Candy Matson as a strong lead character, an intelligent, no-nonsense female detective, driven, relentless, and disarming. Monte wrote, produced, and directed each episode.
The series was broadcasted by KNBC in San Francisco, 30 June 1949-20 May 1951, and quickly became the standout of the popular female investigator programs. The recurring cast included . . .
Candy Matson (Natalie Masters)
Rembrandt Watson, an eccentric photographer (Jack Thomas)
Lieutenant Ray Mallard, a San Francisco Police detective and Matson's love interest (Henry Leff)
Guest spots were cast by the Masters from professional San Francisco actors. Sometimes they used local musicians. Each episodes featured references to local streets, buildings, events, or culture. These associations, along with the quick and creative scripts, made Candy Matson, YUkon 28109 a favorite of audiences west of the Mississippi River.
Constant changes to broadcast times by NBC, and the lack of a sponsor, ultimately led to a cancellation of the series after ninety one episodes, 20 May 1951. A reprise of the series, as Candy Matson, YUkon 38309 was attempted 21 October 1952 without success.
Inventory of episodes
Episodes at Internet Archive website
Candy Matson, Yukon 28209 radio logs at Jerry Haendiges Vintage Radio Logs website
Plot summaries and credits at Radio Gold Index website
The Definitive Candy Matson at Digital Deli Too website