Blog: Thoughts and comments on the world of the pulp magazines

The Lone Ranger on NPR

Posted by at 9:04 pm Monday, January 14, 2008 in Movies/TV/Radio, People, Pulps
Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Though there’s no talk of the pulp version, The Lone Ranger was the subject of a fairly lengthy segment of Monday’s All Things Considered on National Public Radio. And among those interviewed for the 13-minute story was pulpdom’s own Mark Ellis.

The Lone Ranger

The Lone Ranger

It was part of ATC’s new series, In Character, on “indelible American characters, explored in depth.”

The Lone Ranger celebrates his 75th anniversary this month, though that reflects his first appearance on the radio. TLR’s pulp appearances didn’t occur for four more years, when The Lone Ranger Magazine debuted in April 1937. (The magazine ran for only eight monthly issues, culminating in November 1937.)

The cover at left, with TLR wearing a bandana rather than a mask, was from Spartan Publishing’s 1936 ash can pulp, or prototype, used to copyright the magazine so no other publisher could beat them to the punch.

Back to the NPR segment… Ellis, who published Pulp Vault for a number of years and has put together a timeline of TLR’s career, discusses the racial overtones of TLR and Tonto.

If you didn’t hear it during the afternoon broadcast, or if you’d like to hear it again, you can listen to In Character on the NPR Web site.

There’s also a shorter version of the story in text form, with photos of creator Fran Striker and The Lone Ranger, at that same link. Plus, you can read “The Lone Ranger’s Creed.”

And, of course, there’s a comments section where you can offer your views on TLR and the segment.

– William