A Classic Collection of Vintage Radio for Halloween

For those of you who want something spooky to listen to versus watch — or if you just want something a bit more abstract horror rather than TV-MA-wow-the-prothetics-team-outdid-themselves than our previous mention, we have something that should cover your whole evening passing out candy to ghosts and goblins coming to your door.

We’ve long touted the wonderful audio resource that is The Big Broadcast, a four-hour collection of vintage radio fiction that’s been broadcasting on DC-area station WAMU every Sunday for decades. They do a great job of curating bona fide classic essentials along with hidden gems… and putting them all into context. Naturally, their broadcasts around holidays are especially good.

Halloween is no exception — and this past Sunday’s episode has some of the all-time greats that you should treat yourself to if you’ve never heard them. They’re also a delight to hear again.

This four-hour collection includes “The House in Cypress Canyon” from Suspense, a tale of terror that sweeps up a husband and wife in a way that mashes together so many ideas in such a fresh way, you won’t believe it was produced in 1946. We don’t want to say much more than that.

Then there’s Quiet Please‘s “The Thing on the Fourble Board,” — one of the all-time greats of audio horror. Don’t worry if you don’t know what a fourble board is. Both it and much more will become clear to you. This is a tale where you can know exactly how it will end and you’ll still get goosebumps when you hear… well, you’ll know it when you hear it.

From the lonely horror to noisy, chittering horror, we get scare maestro Vincent Price starring in “Three Skeleton Key” on Escape as he paints a perfect picture of an isolated lighthouse beset by ravenous rats.

They finish up the broadcast with what may be one of the most famous radio fiction episodes of all time: the 1938 Mercury Theatre production of “War of the Worlds” starring Orson Welles.

If that’s not enough, you can also listen to our modern, DC-specific version of “War of the Worlds” produced back in 2018, but don’t delay on this particular episode of The Big Broadcast. They’ll only keep the archive copy up for a few weeks.

Happy Halloween, listeners!

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