Richard Diamond, a Girl's Best Friend

Dick Powell, star of Richard Diamond Private Detective, with Evelyn Keyes in the 1947 movie Johnny O'Clock
Dick Powell and Evelyn Keyes in the movie Johnny O'Clock (1947)

The Richard Diamonds now in circulation are a must for the detective show freaks in the OTR audience. Dick Powell, the flip lady-killer crooner, is perfect as the flip lady-killer crooner detective. With more humor than Howard Duff's Sam Spade, with more unbelievable scripts than I Love a Mystery, with more dazzling chicks than Mike Shayne, the Richard Diamond series must be rated No. 1. On most shows, Powell answers the phone with his newest slogan for his business, like "Diamond speaking, a girl's best friend," or "Diamond's tough when he's in the rough."

The shows are far out too. Take "The Gray Man" (02/16/1951), who has been poisoned and is gradually turning colors, or the "Blue Serge Suite" case where every blue serge suite in town is disappearing! Or the time Rick takes a job in a butcher shop where "The Stakes Are High."

Helen is the perfect girlfriend. Unlike most detective's girls, she stays out of every case. You know Margo Lane had to be snooping over Lamont's shoulder. And Ann Williams, Casey's sidekick in crime photography, had to be taking every other picture. Edith Miller in Mr. DA even helped to solve crimes for goodness sakes! But not Helen. She waits in her rich, stately penthouse for Rick to finish his case, and when he finally shows up, he croons the Camel commercial, the kiss and fade out ... Diamond, you're a chauvinist pig but I love ya!

Here are the Diamond cases that I have heard. Maybe there are others you know of to add to the list.

  • 05/29/1949: Blackmail
  • 06/19/1949: Three Murder Suspects
  • 06/??/1949: Grounds for Divorce
  • 08/24/1949: Phony Seance Racket
  • 01/19/1951: Man with the Scar
  • 01/26/1951: Rollins Case
  • 02/02/1951: Gaspary Case
  • 02/09/1951: Blue Serge Suite
  • 02/25/1951: Lady in Distress
  • 03/02/1951: Red Horse
  • 03/09/1951: Butcher Shop
  • 03/23/1951: Monsieur Beauchard
  • 03/30/1951: The Carnival
  • 12/21/1951: Xmas Story
  • 12/28/1951: Plaid Overcoat
  • 01/04/1952: Merry-Go-Round
  • 01/11/1952: White Cow Case
  • 01/18/1952: Simpson Case
  • 01/25/1952: Al Brennar Case
  • 02/01/1952: Gerrbalki Case
  • 02/08/1952: Eddie Burke Case
  • 03/14/1952: Dixon Case
  • 03/21/1952: Hank Burton Case
  • 03/28/1952: Mr. Walker's Problem
  • 04/04/1952: Enigma of Big Red

Undated Shows

  • Gurman the Gunmaker
  • 8:00 Killer
  • Moran Suicide
  • Murder in Oklahoma
  • An Xmas Carol
  • Big Foot Grafton
  • Mona Lisa Case
  • Jacobi's Back in Town
  • Ice Pick Murder (Rexall sponsored)
  • Baxter Matter
  • Police Officer Symposium in Chapel Hill
  • George Lexington Case
  • Nancy Fowler Case
  • No One Was Murdered Case
  • Marilyn Conners Case

Hy Daley in Illustrated Press, November 1979

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