Philo Vance



Jackson Beck


Joan Alexander


Philo Vance is a fictional character featured in novels written in the 1920's and 1930's by Willard Huntington Wright. Philo Vance later was featured on the radio and in motion pictures. In the novels Vance was depicted as extremely sophisticated, intellectual and brilliant. However, the radio version of Vance, while retaining the brilliance described in the novels, was much more down to earth.

Philo Vance first was heard on NBC radio in 1945 and starred Jose Ferrer. To my knowledge only one episode from 1945 has survived. In 1946, John Emery took over the role of Vance and like the 1945 episode's, only one 1946 episode has survived to this day.

In 1948 a syndicated version of the show was produced and I'm happy to say, I have 95 of these episodes. The syndicated show ran from 1948-1950 and starred Jackson Beck (best known as the announcer on radio's The Adventures of Superman and the voice of many cartoons characters) as Philo Vance and Joan Alexander (best known for her role as Lois Lane on radio's The Adventures of Superman ) as Ellen Deering, Vance's secretary.

In my opinion, the Philo Vance syndicated version contained the worst organ music of any radio show ever produced. However, I have recently gone through the shows and have removed most of the horrid stuff. Also, the syndicated version of the show did not contain the normal show opening and closes usually heard on radio shows. They just started and closed with awful organ music. I have added an opening to each of these shows so that you at least know the name of the series to which you are listening.

If you have anything that you think should be added to this page, send me an email and I'll consider adding it.