Meet Corliss Archer: Beauty Contest / Mr. Archer’s Client Suing / Corliss Decides Dexter’s Future
Meet Corliss Archer, a program from radio’s Golden Age, ran from January 7, 1943 to September 30, 1956.
Priscilla Lyon and Janet Waldo successively portrayed 15-year-old Corliss on radio. Lugene Sanders also played Corliss briefly on radio and in the Meet Corliss Archer television show.
Perpetually perky, breathless and well-intentioned, Corliss is constantly at the side of her next-door neighbor and boyfriend, Dexter Franklin (Bill Christy, Sam Edwards). Clumsy, nerdy Dexter, a sweet but constant bungler with a nasal voice, is best remembered for his trademark phrase, “Holy cow!” and his braying call, “Heyyyy, Corrrrrliiiiiss!”–frequently delivered from the hedge separating their houses.
Harry Archer, Corliss’ father, is a lawyer who tolerates Dexter only when he wants to use him to prove the superiority of the male gender. Gruff but gentle, he was played by both Fred Shields and Frank Martin. Janet Archer, Corliss’ mother, was played by Irene Tedrow, Monty Margetts, and Gloria Holden. She is calm and understanding with her daughter and her husband, both of whom sometimes try her patience. Other frequent characters include Mildred Ames, a good friend of Corliss (played by Bebe Young and Barbara Whiting); Mildred’s irritating younger brother Raymond (Tommy Bernard, Kenny Godkin); and Corliss’ rival, Betty Cameron (Delores Crane).
Meet Corliss Archer was written by F. Hugh Herbert, who first introduced the character and her friends in the magazine story “A Private Affair,” the first of a series of stories. Kiss and Tell was a 1943 play that was adapted for a 1945 film starring Shirley Temple. The 1949 sequel, A Kiss For Corliss, was re-released in 1954.