Tag Archives: Town Hall Tonight

30 May: Celebrating a perfect 110

Mr. Allen, still at the height of his career. (Photo: NBC.)

Mr. Allen, still at the height of his career. (Photo: NBC.)

We’ll let the man’s own recollection, shortly before his death, speak for itself here:

Posted in classic radio, comedy, old-time radio | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

If you can’t beat him: Old-time radio listening, 21 June

Town Hall Tonight with Fred Allen: Crisis on the Showboat (NBC, 1939)

Fred Allen's Town Hall Tonight, as Al Hirschfeld sketched it, in a cartoon used for the cover of the republished Treadmill to Oblivion.

Fred Allen’s Town Hall Tonight, as Al Hirschfeld sketched it, in a cartoon used for the cover of the republished Treadmill to Oblivion.

The last-surviving installment of Fred Allen’s seminal Town Hall Tonight will just so happen to be the next-to-last show of the 1938-39 radio season. And a good thing, sort of, because Allen is about to be divested of the title that has enabled him to a comfortable presentation of his realistic hybrid between the better of vintage vaudeville and his own forward-looking satire.

Posted in classic radio, comedy, crime drama, Music/Variety, old-time radio | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Allen’s quarterback sneak: Old-time radio listening, 11 October

The Fred Allen Show (Hour of Smiles): Satire on Surveys and Polls (NBC, 1939) 

Fred Allen probably found entanglement in microphones child’s play compared to tangling with myopic advertising agencies . . . (Photo: NBC)

Fred Allen wasn’t necessarily thrilled when a change in the advertising agency handling his sponsor’s account compelled a title and slight format adjustment away from his groundbreaking Town Hall Tonight.

The new agency was governed, Allen would write (in Treadmill to Oblivion) by a former college football quarterback who “could never recognise one of [his former teammates] until he had asked him to bend over.”

Posted in classic radio, comedy, old-time radio | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment