The Spider #20 Audiobook
Reign of the Death Fiddler
by Norvell W. Page writing as Grant Stockbridge
Read by Nick Santa Maria
Exactly at eleven-thirty each Thursday night the Death Fiddler conducted his unholy orchestra in a symphony of murder which sounded the doom of some marked victim. A master of the grotesque, he held an entire city in the strangle-hold of a helpless terror; even the forces of the Law stood in shuddery, superstitious fear of this new destroyer. And then the Spider, Master of Men, modern knight-errant of mankind, rose up against him! But the Spider, too, was baffled; not all Richard Wentworth’s efforts seemed enough to destroy this new, this ugliest of all Hydra heads rearing out of the noxious slime of the Underworld...
For ten grim years, the Spider battled the Underworld, imprinting his scarlet seal on the bodies of the criminals he slew. No one knew his name. His face was unknown. Pursued by the police, sought by the mob, the Spider crushed crime with a blazing intensity never witnessed before or since. Driven, hunted, and violently committed to exterminating criminals of all calibers. A self-appointed savior of humanity, driven manic-depressive, and possibly undiagnosed paranoid schizophrenic, the Spider was known as the Master of Men.
The most compelling of the classic pulp heroes, Richard Wentworth had a fiancé, a coterie of equally committed aides, and a tense relationship with New York Police Commissioner Stanley Kirkpatrick, Wentworth’s best friend, but also a dedicated lawman sworn to send the Spider to the electric chair—no matter who he turns out to be.
Garbed in a black silk cloak, slouch hat and wearing an assortment of masks and strange disguises to make him look as fierce as his namesake, the Spider ran roughshod over a vicious legion of thugs and hoodlums, leaving behind him a trail of cold corpses branded by his calling card, a scarlet spider burned into their foreheads.
Nick Santa Maria reads Reign of the Death Fiddler with indescribable emotion. Originally published in The Spider magazine, May, 1935.
Chapter 1: Brand of Death
Chapter 2: The Master’s Warning
Chapter 3: The Gang Chief’s Triumph
Chapter 4: The Spider’s Visit
Chapter 5: The Death Fiddler Strikes
Chapter 6: $200,000 Kidnaping
Chapter 7: Summoned by the Death Fiddler
Chapter 8: The Fiddler Calls
Chapter 9: The Bal Masque
Chapter 10: Spider to the Rescue
Chapter 11: Victory — and Defeat
Chapter 12: The Fiddler Plans Anew
Chapter 13: Limpy Magee Is Unmasked
Chapter 14: The Race Against Death
Chapter 15: The Death Fiddler Trapped
Chapter 16: Death in Herald Square
Chapter 17: Surrender
Chapter 18: The Death Fiddler in Person
Nick Santa Maria Nick was born early in life in Brooklyn, NY. His theatrical background is based in Comedy Improv. He was a long standing member of the late lamented Miami based, Mental Floss, where he served as head writer/composer. From there he began his career in commercials, voice-overs, TV, Film, and theatre. He has performed in many roles on the stage including his award winning turn as Nick in Over The River And Through The Woods, I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change, as Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls, in The 25th Annual Putnam Country Spelling Bee as Mr. Panch (3-D Theatricals), Mr. Bromhead in No Sex Please, We’re British at The Norris, and as Pseudolus in, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum at the Norris Theatre. Television: The Buffalo Bill Show, B.J. Stryker, and two Disney Christmas Specials. Off Broadway: Writer/Composer/Performer on Secrets Every Smart Traveler Should Know, Soundtrack on RCA Victor. Broadway: Vince Fontaine in Tommy Tune’s production of Grease. He also appeared in every domestic company of Mel Brooks’ The Producers, understudying everyone from Nathan Lane and Jason Alexander, to Tony Danza and David Hassellhoff. He was the original Genie in Disney’s Aladdin, a Musical Spectacular, soundtrack on Disney Records. Nick is a resident of Los Angeles and is currently writing a book about classic film comedians, Nick’s been a long time film historian, and has written several articles on the topic. |