Boston Blackie radio series, starring Chester Morris, began June 23, 1944, on NBC as a summer replacement for The Amos 'n' Andy Show. Sponsored by Rinso, the series continued until September 15 of that year. Lesley Woods appeared as Blackie's girlfriend Mary Wesley, and Harlow Wilcox was the show's announcer. On April 11, 1945, Richard Kollmar took over the title role in a radio series syndicated by Frederic W. Ziv to Mutual and other network outlets. Over 200 episodes of this series were produced between 1944 and October 25, 1950. Other sponsors included Lifebuoy Soap, Champagne Velvet beer and R&H beer. While investigating mysteries, Blackie invariably encountered harebrained Police Inspector Faraday (Maurice Tarplin) and always solved the mystery to Faraday's amazement. Initially, friction surfaced in the relationship between Blackie and Faraday, but as the series continued, Faraday recognized Blackie's talents and requested assistance. Blackie dated Mary Wesley (Jan Miner), and for the first half of the series, his best pal Shorty was always on hand. The humorless Faraday was on the receiving end of Blackie's bad puns and word play.