V …is for
The Voice on the Wire
Moreover, Ball’s sleuth Detective Shirley was, as Ed Hulse observed, “an early example of a familiar type found in pulp fiction: a highly educated, socially prominent, and independently wealthy bachelor possessed of considerable mental and physical ability—in other words, an amalgam of Sherlock Holmes, Nick Carter, and Craig Kennedy.” So he made an exciting and attractive screen hero for whom audiences could cheer.
Survival Status: Presumed lost.
Director: Stuart Paton
Release Date: March 18, 1917
Release Company: Universal Film Manufacturing Company
Cast: Neva Gerber (Polly Marion), Ben F. Wilson (John Shirley), Francis McDonald (“Red” Warren), Ernest Shields (Howard Van Cleft), Joseph W. Girard (Dr. Reynolds), Nigel De Brulier (Professor Duval), Howard Crampton (Captain Cronin), William Canfield (William Grimsby), William Quinn (Emil LaRoux), Irene Hunt (Mrs. Reynolds), L. M. Wells (Professor Montague), Frank MacQuarrie (Alvin Van Cleft), Frank Tokunaga, Hoot Gibson, Josephine Hill, Lew Short.
Episodes: (two reels each) 1. The Oriental Death Punch. 2. Mysterious Man in Black. 3. The Spider’s Web. 4. The Next Victim. 5. The Spectral Hand. 6. The Death Warrant. 7. The Marked Crown. 8. High Finance. 9. The Stern Chase. 10. The Guarded Heart. 11. The Thought Machine. 12. The Sign of the Thumb or the Fifth Victim. 13. ’Twixt Death and Dawn. 14. The Light of Dawn. 15. The Living Death.