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Serial Report
    - Chapter Ninety-Seven
    - Chapter Ninety-Six
    - Chapter Ninety-Five
    - Chapter Ninety-Four
    - Chapter Ninety-Three
    - Chapter Ninety-Two
    - Chapter Ninety-One
    - Chapter Ninety
    - Chapter Eighty-Nine
    - Chapter Eighty-Eight
    - Chapter Eighty-Seven
    - Chapter Eighty-Six
    - Chapter Eighty-Five
    - Chapter Eighty-Four
    - Chapter Eighty-Three
    - Chapter Eighty-Two
    - Chapter Eighty-One
    - Chapter Eighty
    - Chapter Seventy-Nine
    - Chapter Seventy-Eight
    - Chapter Seventy-Seven
    - Chapter Seventy-Six
    - Chapter Seventy-Five
    - Chapter Seventy-Four
    - Chapter Seventy-Three
    - Chapter Seventy-Two
    - Chapter Seventy-One
    - Chapter Seventy
    - Chapter Sixty-Nine
    - Chapter Sixty-Eight
    - Chapter Sixty-Seven
    - Chapter Sixty-Six
    - Chapter Sixty-Five
    - Chapter Sixty-Four
    - Chapter Sixty-Three
    - Chapter Sixty-Two
    - Chapter Sixty-One
    - Chapter Sixty
    - Chapter Fifty-Nine
    - Chapter Fifty-Eight
    - Chapter Fifty-Seven
    - Chapter Fifty-Six
    - Chapter Fifty-Five
    - Chapter Fifty-Four
    - Chapter Fifty-Three
    - Chapter Fifty-Two
    - Chapter Fifty-One
    - Chapter Fifty
    - Chapter Forty-Nine
    - Chapter Forty-Eight
    - Chapter Forty-Seven
    - Chapter Forty-Six
    - Chapter Forty-Five
    - Chapter Forty-Four
    - Chapter Forty-Three
    - Chapter Forty-Two
    - Chapter Forty-One
    - Chapter Forty
    - Chapter Thirty-Nine
    - Chapter Thirty-Eight
    - Chapter Thirty-Seven
    - Chapter Thirty-Six
    - Chapter Thirty-Five
    - Chapter Thirty-Four
    - Chapter Thirty-Three
    - Chapter Thirty-Two
    - Chapter Thirty-One
    - Chapter Thirty
    - Chapter Twenty-Nine
    - Chapter Twenty-Eight
    - Chapter Twenty-Seven
    - Chapter Twenty-Six
    - Chapter Twenty-Five
    - Chapter Twenty-Four
    - Chapter Twenty-Three
    - Chapter Twenty-Two
    - Chapter Twenty-One
    - Chapter Twenty
    - Chapter Nineteen
    - Chapter Eighteen
    - Chapter Seventeen
    - Chapter Sixteen
    - Chapter Fifteen
    - Chapter Fourteen
    - Chapter Thirteen
    - Chapter Twelve
    - Chapter Eleven
    - Chapter Ten
    - Chapter Nine
    - Chapter Eight
    - Chapter Seven
    - Chapter Six
    - Chapter Five
    - Chapter Four
    - Chapter Three
    - Chapter Two
    - Chapter One

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Chapter Ninety-Six

Serial Memories

by Boyd Magers

San Edwards as Chuck Ramseu and Guy Wilkerson as Ichabod "Icky" Mudd threaten two hoods in Columbia's "Captain Midnight" ('42).Sam Edwards regarding “Captain Midnight” (‘42 Columbia): “I had a lot of fun on it. We did 13 episodes in six weeks. They were racing to try and get through before I was drafted, and I was drafted about a week after we finished the last episode. I did all of the stunts: the run-throughs, the falling into traps, crashing cars through barricades and so forth, and I was not aware they had a double for me. This little fellow kept following me around and would ask, ‘Do you want me to do this for you?’ I said, ‘No, I can drive.’ So after the picture, I kept getting these extra checks. I found out later I was getting all the stunt checks. This poor guy, I was doing him out of his stunt checks. Anyway, I could use the money because they didn’t pay very much in those days.’ In one of the episodes there was a scene where one of the heavies had us in a shack and we had a free-for-all fight. The heavy was supposed to let me hit him, but it wasn’t supposed to look like he was letting me. He said, ‘Go ahead, I can dodge it.’ I said, ‘I can hit you with a near miss,’ and he said, ‘No, try and hit me. We want this to look good.’ I’m supposed to give him a haymaker, but during the fight a guy got behind him so he couldn’t back up, and I hauled off from the floor, hit him, and knocked him out. It almost broke my hand. That kind of unnerved me a bit. But, I tell you, they had us driving through barricades and falling into traps in false floors. It was a lot of fun. I was young and daring, and I sort of enjoyed it. I hit a barricade in an automobile. It was a breakaway, but it didn’t break. We kind of laughed about that. It didn’t do the car any good though. Dave O’Brien later became a writer and wrote a lot of things for the ‘Red Skelton Show’. He was a real nice guy.”

Chapter 12 Lobby title card for "Captain Midnight" serial.

John Crawford said Yakima Canutt got him a job on Republic’s “Adventures of Frank and Jesse James” (48). “The serial took about a month to shoot. And he got me not just a one or two day bit, but as the brains heavy that cooks up all mischief. I would get two guys and tell them I wanted them to blow up the water tower or start a stampede or some other devilment. I always had to come up with something for them to do that would match up with the stock footage Republic had. I kept waiting to see when they would get into my heavy scenes because they’d film the guys coming up to me and then they’d film them walking away, but there was never any real scene. Well, did I learn a lesson! One day my men met me at a secluded place where they did rear projection. They had a slide in back of us of a beautiful white cloud. Well, that cloud didn’t move in all 13 chapters, daytime, nighttime, whatever. On the last day we shot all that stuff. By the time I finished with that I was shaking like a dog passing bone because the scenes all began to sound alike after a while. This is my first real picture and I’m trying to get it all out and make it sound like something. Afterwards, we went to see the rushes and it just went on and on and on. All these scenes for all 13 chapters. I didn’t know they were saving that up, and boom! They hit me with that one. It was quite a load, especially if you don’t realize it and you’re not all that 100% sure with your lines. Yak said, ‘Well, Crawford, you can handle dialogue okay. Now you better work on your action.’ The first time I ever did a screen fight was with Clayton Moore. Screen fights are the antithesis of fighting. If I’m going to hit you it’s like me throwing a baseball in that direction. I move across, you snap you head back, and it looks like I really pasted you. Clayton said, ‘Have you ever done one of these? I said, ‘No.’ He said, ‘Take a swing at me,’ and he felt the wind go by him. He said, ‘Oh no. Let’s get back behind the flats.’ He then said, ‘You don’t have to come any closer than this’ (meaning a good distance) and I’ve never forgotten that. So we worked on it and I got pretty good. In fact, I began to show other actors how to do that, including James Garner and Brad Johnson.”

Posing as a legit mining engineer, John Crawford sends henchman Georg J. Lewis out to stop anyone from discovering the rich vein of gold he murdered to keep secret for himself in Republic's "Adventures of Frank and Jesse James" ('48).

Billy Benedict was Whitey, Billy Batson and Captain Marvel's closest aide in "The Adventures of Captain Marvel" ('40 Republic).Billy Benedict worked on several serials, “Adventures of Captain Marvel”, “Perils of Nyoka” and “Brenda Starr, Reporter”. “They were a lot of fun. Frank Coghlan and I became very good friends during “Adventures of Captain Marvel’. There was one scene where the Arabs are supposed to be shooting blazing arrows at the tents and they catch fire. We had a prop man named Wade and he had a couple of assistants who were using gasoline to wet down the tents so they would burn good. I don’t remember how the scene was, but on ‘Action’ we come out, and there was an explosion like you never heard before. What the guy did was, he didn’t completely empty the cans, threw them in, and with all the fumes and everything else, it made a nice explosion. On another occasion I was shot in the butt with wads from a rifle. Purely an accident. We were creeping up, and when I lifted up, a guy behind me fired and hit me. And those wads hurt!”

(All quotes courtesy Tom and Jim Goldrup.)

 

 

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