Generic Radio Workshop Script Library (BACK)

Series: Buck Rogers
Show: Episode #1
Date: Apr 05 1939

ANNCR:

(echo) Buck...Rogers...in...the...25th...Century!

FX:

ROCKET MOTOR/TIMPANI/THUNDER SHEET ROLLED AND WOBBLED

ANNCR:

Buck Rogers is back on the air. Buck and Wilma and all their fascinating friends and mysterious enemies in the super-scientific 25th century. This program is brought to you by the makers of Popsicle, Fudgicle, and Creamsicle, those delicious frozen confections on a stick. Now I have a swell surprise for you. The famous winner of the "Typical American Boy" contest has now become "Popsicle Pete," and here's a message from him.

PETE:

Hello everybody. I sure am glad to meet'cha. And boy am I glad I was picked to be the typical American boy. Because now I'm Popsicle Pete. I always wanted to be on the radio, and now I have a chance to tell you about some wonderful presents you can get - Free! Gee, you oughta see them - hundreds of 'em! You get them just for saving bags from nifty Popsicles, Fudgicles, and Creamsicles. Some gifts! Even better than Christmas! You can get a wristwatch, a movie camera, table tennis, a wallet, a doll - gee, lot's of gifts! Just save the bags from Popsicles, Fudgicles, and Creamsicles on a handy stick. Boy, do they taste good!

ANNCR:

Wholesome, too. And nourishing. Made fresh every day of the finest ingredients. The biggest 5 cents-worth anywhere.

PETE:

And say, kids - get the free illustrated Popsicle gift list at your ice cream store. A free coupon comes with it, worth 10 bags.

ANNCR:

And now for Buck Rogers and his thrilling adventures 500 hundred years in the future.

As you probably know, Buck was born right here in our own times, in this twentieth century. And the story of how he got started on his amazing adventures so far in the future is mighty interesting. But instead of telling you about it, let's turn the dial that will project us ahead in time and find out all about it that way.

Now the capital of 25th-century America is Niagara, and there is is that Doctor Huer, the great scientist, has his marvelous laboratory. In one room of it, he's working on a strange-looking device that sends a peculiar greenish light down onto a human figure lying on a table before him. Shall we join him there? OK then, here we go - Five hundred years into the future!

FX:

TIMPANI/THUNDER ROLL

FX:

ELECTRICAL DEVICE MIDRANGE HUM, RISING PITCH HUER: (hypnotically) The ray is putting you to sleep...to sleep...relax...and sleep...sleep...sleep.

FX:

RAY IS SWITCHED OFF WITH A CLICK

HUER:

(Normal voice again). Good! The ray's had it's effect. Now I can go ahead and--

FX:

KNOCK ON DOOR

HUER:

er, yes, yes, come in!

FX:

DOOR OPENS, WILMA DEERING ENTERS

HUER:

Oh, Hello Wilma!

WILMA:

Hello, Doctor Huer! My! Why don't you have more light in here! Coming in from outside I can hardly see a thing in this spooky greenish glow!

HUER:

Part of a little experiment I'm conducting.

WILMA:

Ohhhh-

HUER:

But tell me - Have you seen anything of Black Barney? Here in Niagara?

WILMA:

Why, no. Hasn't given up his job of Prime Minister on Mars, has he?

HUER:

Oh no, no! But one of his Martian Rocketship factories has worked out a new control device for me. I rather hoped he'd get here with it today!

WILMA:

Oh.

HUER:

Meantime, I've made ready for final tests on this little invention here. Like to stay and see it? WILMA: I'd love to, Doctor, and you know it - but I just dropped in to find out if you'd seen any sign of -- Ohh!

HUER:

W-w-what's the matter?

WILMA:

Doctor, what's happened to him?

HUER:

Eh?

WILMA:

Is he all right? Doctor!

HUER:

(chuckles) Oh, I see!

WILMA:

What's happened to him? Why is he lying here on this table?

HUER:

Now don't worry, Wilma.

WILMA:

Don't worry?? Doctor, what are you --

HUER:

He has offered to be the subject of my test, that's all.

WILMA:

but then - why is he? -

HUER:

He's simply lying here, comfortably asleep. Under the influence of my Electro-Hypnotic Ray.

WILMA:

Oh, I -- I was afraid something had happened to him.

HUER:

Not a thing. Surely you don't think for a minute that I'd do anything to harm --

WILMA:

No, of course not. But the Electro-Hypnotic Ray -- are you sure this experiment won't hurt him in any way?

HUER:

Oh, absolutely sure.

WILMA:

Well...you can't blame me for being a little shocked for a minute. But - what's that thing up near his head that looks like a miniature power plant - with a loudspeaker on top of it?

HUER:

That, Wilma, is my latest scientific achievement. My newly-perfected Electro-Hypno-Mentalophone.

WILMA:

Your what?

HUER:

Well, you remember the MentaloSCOPE, don't you?

WILMA:

Why, sure! When you put a person under the Mentaloscope all his memories showed up on a sort of moving picture screen.

HUER:

That's right! And this is an adaptation of it. With this, the Electro-Hypno-MentaloPHONE, the memories of the subject will come to us verbally - through the loudspeaker here. (reflecting) Provided, of course, that my calculations have been correct.

WILMA:

Hm. Sort of...read a person's mind aloud, you mean?

HUER:

Yes! Yes, that's it exactly.

WILMA:

Where do you ever get ideas for things like this, Doctor Huer? Surely people don't just barge in and ask for you to work them out?

HUER:

Hardly. The scientific research that led up to the development of this machine was started way back in the twentieth century.

WILMA:

Why, I always thought that the people back in the twentieth century weren't much better than savages! And what they knew about scientific things--

HUER:

Ohh, no, not at all, Wilma! You owe a great deal to the scientists of those days. Were it not for the great groundwork laid by men like Einstein, Fitzgerald, Compton, Milliken and the rest, why we'd be without a great many of the things we have today.

WILMA:

They never really got anywhere with rocketship development, or anything like that though, did they?

HUER:

Well...successful rocket flight depends on two things that have been brought into existence only recently.

WILMA:

One of them must be Inertron.

HUER:

Yes. Inertron. The material that defies gravity and makes it possible to lift a big spaceship off the earth and away from it's terrific gravitational pull, without too much wasted power.

WILMA:

And what's the other?

HUER:

Impervium. The only metal capable of withstanding the high temperature of rocket blast for any length of time.

WILMA:

oh.

HUER:

But now, let's go ahead with this experiment.

WILMA:

Yes, let's. And you can tell me how this apparatus works as we go along. And just what it does to him.

HUER:

Well, not very much to tell you about the apparatus itself, Wilma. Except that here, in this little pad under his head, is an extremely sensitive and high-frequency response piezo-electric oscillator of, of, quite complicated design.

WILMA:

(not exactly following all this) Yes-s-s-s. yes, I - I- guess so.

HUER:

Yes. And I succeeded in tuning it to receive the minute electronic impulses that emanate from his brain.

WILMA:

yeah, OK.

HUER:

Through the medium of a Super-Radiating Protonaformer.

WILMA:

Yes...oh...I see..a what?

HUER:

In other words, we're able to obtain sufficient amplification of the impulse output to register audibly through a process of Thermionic Node Magnification. And that's all there is to it.

WILMA:

I think I'll understand it better when I see this thing work.

HUER:

And I shall be very much disappointed if it doesn't!

WILMA:

Don't you worry about that, Doctor - your inventions ALWAYS work!

HUER:

I have been rather lucky in most of my experiments, haven't I?

WILMA:

Lucky?!

HUER:

Now, let's proceed with this one.

WILMA:

All right. Anything I can do to help?

HUER:

No thanks. First of all, we have to switch in the Electronaformer.

FX:

Switch clicks. Faint humming enters in BG

WILMA:

That Electronaformer makes a sort of eerie sound.

HUER:

Yes. And now - when I switch on this microphone and speak to him , my words will be registered directly on his brain. Not through his ears, you understand, but DIRECTLY on his brain!

WILMA:

uh-huh.

HUER:

And if we're successful, we'll receive his subconscious response through the loudspeaker.

WILMA:

Go ahead, doctor!

HUER:

Now.

FX:

MIKE SWITCH BEING FLIPPED

HUER:

Young Man. What is your name? I - I said - What - is - your- name?

BUCK:

(Filter) Buck...Rogers...

FX:

SWITCH MIKE OFF.

HUER:

(ecstatic) Wilma, it works!

WILMA:

But Doctor...

HUER:

My invention's a success!

WILMA:

Doctor, what happened?

HUER:

It works even better than I thought it would!

WILMA:

He didn't even move his lips, though. How could we hear him talk if he didn't move his lips?

HUER:

It read his mind aloud, Wilma! It read his mind aloud!! WILMA: It sounded like his real voice, though.

HUER:

Well of course! Because he THINKS of speech in the same manner that he UTTERS it.

WILMA:

Great day - it doesn't seem possible! Ask him some more questions.

HUER:

Yes. Yes, by all means. Listen:

FX:

SWITCH CLICK

HUER:

Buck - You were born back in the twentieth century, were you not?

BUCK:

Yes sir. But THIS is the twenty-fifth century.

HUER:

You see, Wilma? His memory is preserved intact!

WILMA:

May I ask him a question?

HUER:

Surely, go ahead!

FX:

SWITCH CLICK

HUER:

Go ahead --

WILMA:

Buck -- Buck, how did you happened to come to the 25th century?

BUCK:

One day, in the year 1919, I was in the lower workings of an abandoned mine near the city of Pittsburgh,

WILMA:

- yes? -

BUCK:

...when all of a sudden, the supports that held up the walls and ceiling gave way, and the whole thing caved in on me!

WILMA:

- yes? -

BUCK:

Some kind of peculiar gas was released. It put me to sleep. It kept me in a state of suspended animation for 500 years. Then the ground shifted and let in fresh air, and I woke up.

WILMA:

Well - how did you know you were in suspended animation for 500 years?

BUCK:

Instead of the year 1919, it was the year 24-something. Uh, to be exact, it was 24-

HUER:

(INTERRUPTING) How did you KNOW what year it was?

BUCK:

I was told about it by Lieutenant Wilma Deering, a beautiful girl soldier I met when I first came to.

HUER:

(CHUCKLING) Oh, then you KNEW Wilma Deering.

WILMA:

(WHISPERS) Doctor!

BUCK:

I certainly DO! She's the finest and bravest girl whoever lived! Why, Wilma's --

WILMA:

(INTERRUPTS) Buck Rogers?

BUCK:

Uhhh, yes?

WILMA:

Did you uh...did you find anything new and different when you first came into the 25th century?

BUCK:

Oh, a great deal, thanks to Doctor Huer.

WILMA:

(TESTING HIM) Doctor Huer?

BUCK:

The greatest scientist who ever lived!

HUER:

erhhh, uh, wh-wh-what's that?

BUCK:

Nowhere in the universe is there a scientist who's done so much good for humanity! Or done anything that could even begin to--

WILMA:

(GIGGLING)

HUER:

now-now-now wait -- wait a minute, Buck!

BUCK:

Yes?

HUER:

just - just forget Doctor Huer and go on with what you were saying.

BUCK:

But he's the man who invented the first rocketship! That took us to the moon! And it was THAT trip that proved the practicability of interplanetary flight!

WILMA:

proved the practicability of interplanetary flight! Nothing wrong with THIS machine, Doctor!

HUER:

Where ELSE have you gone by rocketship, Buck?

WILMA:

Well, first to Mars, where we helped King Analdo put down and invasion by the Martian tiger-men. Then to Saturn, and the Saturnian moons. Venus. Jupiter. And even far-off Pluto!

WILMA:

Which planet did you find most interesting?

BUCK:

Well that's hard to say. Jupiter has the biggest field for exploration, simply because it's so much larger that the rest of the planets...

HUER:

Very True. Do you expect to do any more rocketing around through outer space?

BUCK:

There's nothing else I'd RATHER do, sir.

FX:

SWITCH OFF

HUER:

Well, my! Do you like my little contraption?

WILMA:

It's WONDERFUL, Doctor! I told you it would work.

HUER:

Well, is there anything else you'd like to ask Buck? I mean, before I turn off this green ray?

WILMA:

Unh-unh. Let's wake him up and see if he remembers anything that happened during the experiment.

HUER:

Allright; go ahead.

WILMA:

All right.

(SLAPS BUCK GENTLY ON THE CHEEKS TO WAKE HIM)

 

C'mon Buck, wake up!

BUCK:

(OFF FILTER, DROWSY) Huh?

WILMA:

I say - wake up! (A FEW MORE SLAPS) You've been asleep!

BUCK:

Asleep?

WILMA:

Uh-huh.

BUCK:

Oh, hello Wilma.

WILMA:

Hello!

BUCK:

Where'd you come from? What're you doing here?

WILMA:

I've just been let in on the test of Doctor Huer's Electro -- erhh...

HUER:

Electro-Hypno-Mentalophone.

WILMA:

Yes.

BUCK:

Oh, doggone it, instead of helping you with your test, I fell asleep. Say, I'm awfully sorry, Doctor.

HUER:

Sorry?

BUCK:

Well, yes sir, I was gonna help out!

HUER:

I put you to sleep with this machine.

BUCK:

Oh really?

HUER:

Right.

BUCK:

I guess that's one on me, then! How'd it work?

HUER:

Even better than I expected!

BUCK:

Well, good!

WILMA:

Oh it was marvelous, Buck! You told us your whole life history - without even opening your mouth!

BUCK:

Hey now - wait a minute!

HUER:

It's all right, Buck! You didn't say a single thing you shouldn't have.

BUCK:

Thank goodness for that! Say - let's put Wilma under it!

WILMA:

Oh no you don't!

HUER:

(CHUCKLES)

BUCK:

You have to do SOMEthing for excitement around here! C'mon, Wilma!

HUER:

You're never satisfied unless there's something exciting going on, are you Buck?

BUCK:

Well, it's not as bad as all that, Doctor. But - things HAVE been sorta slow around here lately --

HUER:

Wait until we start making test of the new type of Gyro-Cosmic-Reletivator I've just devised.

BUCK:

A new one?

WILMA:

Isn't that the equipment on a rocketship that makes it possible to take off without much loss of time for pickup?

HUER:

That's right. And without the usual physical effects of too-quick acceleration. It removes from your ship the normal effects of weight and inertia and momentum and the like.

BUCK:

Well, how have you improved the Reletivator, Doctor?

HUER:

Buck - if this new instrument does what I hope it will, there'll be practically NO limit to the speed of a rocketship, immediately upon taking off!

WILMA:

Go-o-o-od night! Imagine, getting into the control cabin, opening the power lever, and going a couple of thousand miles an hour, (SNAPS FINGER) just like that!

HUER:

That's EXACTLY what we'll be able to do, Wilma.

BUCK:

Buy, that hardly seems possible, does it! But when can we test it out, Doctor? Have you already got it installed in a rocketship?

HUER:

Uhhh, No Buck, as a matter of fact, I don't even have it yet.

BUCK:

Huh?

HUER:

Oh, erh, it's been made up, all right. The one we use for the test. But it isn't right here yet.

WILMA:

I don't understand, Doctor.

BUCK:

Why yessir, can't we get it here? The sooner we can get it and start trying it out, the sooner we can break the monotony of just sitting around doing --

FX:

FAINT RUMBLE IN DISTANCE STARTS DURING SPEECH

HUER:

-- Wait, Buck -- Listen! --

WILMA:

Yes Doctor, I hear it too!

BUCK:

Why yes! But what under the sun is it?

FX:

DRONE and RUMBLE GETTING CLOSER

WILMA:

(EXCITED) Look here! Out of the window!

HUER:

(EXCITED) Good heavens, Wilma!

BUCK:

It's coming right down this way!

HUER:

Wilma!

WILMA:

BUCK!

FX:

THERE IS A TERRIFIC CRASH

ANNCR:

Say! Buck's wish for excitement certainly came true in a hurry! Great day, I wonder what that was. And I certainly hope he and Wilma and Doctor Huer are allright. What do you say, Pete?

PETE:

Well I know what would make ME feel alright! A great big frozen Fudgicle. Jiminy! Can you imagine anything better than that fresh, creamy chocolate fudge, frozen ice-cold on a stick?

ANNCR:

Fellows and Girls, what's the best, purest, nickel's worth you can get? Right - a Fudgicle. Delicious and full of helpful energy. Made only from pure milk products. Swell to eat and easy to digest. And don't forget to save the bags for those wonderful free prizes. Exciting gifts like cameras, dolls, sweatshirts, gorgeous jewelry and lots of other things.

PETE:

And listen, kids. Be sure to get your free Popsicle gift list at your ice-cream store. Don't take no for an answer.

FX:

THUNDER DRUM RUMBLE - ALMOST MORSE CODE(10 seconds)