Cover art for podcast Breaking Walls

Breaking Walls

250 EpisodesProduced by James ScullyWebsite

Breaking Walls: The Podcast on the History of American Network Radio.

18:33

The Story Behind The End Of Fibber McGee And Molly

This is a snippet from Breaking Walls Episode 94: Radio And The Drugstore/Malt Shop (1940 - 1955)

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Jim and Marian Jordan’s Fibber McGee and Molly, was Tuesday at 9:30PM appointment radio. Upwards of forty million people tuned in each week. Fibber’s hall closet became one of radio’s most famous running gags.

After television’s proliferation, the program’s audience rapidly shrunk. Longtime sponsor Johnson’s Wax left in 1950 and by January of 1952 the show’s rating was down to 10.7.

In 1953 with her health deteriorating, a doctor suggested to Marian Jordan that she take a long rest. She refused.

She would continue performing. Production moved to the couple’s home in Encino. The music was pre-recorded and the commercials were no longer built into the show.

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