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Serial Report
    - Chapter 101
    - Chapter One Hundred
    - Chapter Ninety-Nine
    - Chapter Ninety-Eight
    - 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-Nine

Our sincere appreciation to Kit Parker and the newly formed Sprocket Vault for the stunning 35mm nitrate print restoration and DVD release of the previously lost 1928 Weiss Brothers/ArtClass 10 chapter silent serial, "The Mysterious Airman" starring Walter Miller, Eugenia Gilbert and Robert Walker. Walter Miller invents two new innovations for his air company's planes, prompting the mysterious hooded Pilot X to set out to steal them. But who is Pilot X? There are several candidates and the air thrills and suspense will keep you guessing til the very end! This is a gem! $19.99 from <amazon.com> or <thesprocketvault.com>

Dorothy Herbert and “Mysterious
Dr. Satan” (Pt. 2)

by Boyd Magers

Dorothy Herbert.Dorothy Herbert continues her memories of working on “Mysterious Dr. Satan.” (See Part 1 in Ch. 98.)

“On account of bad weather, up until now we had been shooting all indoor scenes; but now that the sun was out we were told we would go on location. The scene, which the studio writers and I had written together, called for a horse to do a quite difficult jump. They brought out some horses from a stable that furnished them to the studio. When I looked at the horse I was supposed to use, I said, ‘This horse will not do. I am sure he has not been trained for it.’ The director consulted with the head wrangler, and he agreed. They had no horse in their stable that could do the stunt as written. ‘What are we supposed to do now?’ asked the director. I told him I had the horse that had been trained to do the stunt and it had been written into the script at my suggestion. I do not think he quite believed me; nevertheless, he told the head wrangler to send someone to pick up the horse and bring it to the location. I went to the phone and called the barn and told them to have Rex ready, a studio truck was on the way; also, to bring my own saddle. In my opinion, to take the jump, I could not have accomplished it without my own specially equipped saddle.”

“When they unloaded Rex it took a special know-how to saddle my horses; extra safety girths, etc. to keep the saddle from slipping. In this scene, the doctor, for whom I worked as secretary, and his daughter were being held captive. I spied two villains approaching. In order to divert their attention, I mounted my horse and galloped off. Now, in a scene like this where there was an element of danger involved, they did not call for a rehearsal; instead, several cameras were called into play and they tried to get it on film with the first shot. Suddenly, in my path there loomed a high fence; it looked
Dorothy and Rex jump over fence. as if I were trapped. I galloped Rex toward it, and just as he was about to jump a shot rang out and I fell into my layback, with one leg in the air, hands dragging, as though I had been hit. Since I did not know how long they would be following me with the cameras, I remained in that position until the pickup men caught up with me. When I rode back, the entire crew applauded. Evidently they did not attend the circus very much or they would have seen me perform this stunt. The director was delighted. As I jumped off of my horse he came over and put his arm around me. ‘One of the writers said you would do your own stunts, but I had not expected anything quite like this. It was great.’”

“From then on the director and I were the best of friends. He consulted me before each stunt and used my horses for the rest of the picture. When it came time for the trick riding parts and he found I had the foresight to buy a horse and train him for the special stunts, he was indeed pleased. I was happy the director and I were finally in accord, because some of the subsequent scenes were to call for understanding and patience.”

Dorothy goes into a fender drag.“We were at a new location, one with long, winding roads that would give them plenty of room to film long shots of the chases. Now it was time for some of the trick riding. The script called for me to be galloping down the road with the bad guys in hot pursuit. They are madly firing their guns at me. In order not to get hit from behind, and also to be able to return their fire, I go into a fender drag, placing me facing them. I had practiced this stunt and had been able to do it four times in a row, which I figured was quite enough. Instead, they had me do it over and over and shot it from different angles. I repeated the drag 16 times. When I got off of my horse at last, I asked someone to help me remove my boot. They could not get it off, my ankle was so swollen. They sent for the doctor, who cut off the boot and sent me home. The director called me at home and told me to take it easy, they were shooting scenes in which I did not take part, and to call them when I felt that I was ready to go back to work. Needless to say, I recovered hastily and went back to work before I actually should have.”

“There was one incident where the doctor’s daughter (Ella Neal) and I had been captured by enemies of her father: we were riding down the road ahead of the man (Sam Garrett) who was taking us, at gun point, to his boss; ahead of us was an overhanging tree branch; I spurred my horse and he rushed forward; I grabbed the branch and swung off of my horse, hitting the villain, who was not far behind me, with both of my feet knocking him off of his horse, which I drop down upon astride, and the doctor’s daughter and I dash away to freedom.”

“They saved a big scene for the last day of shooting, although it was not the last episode of the picture: a jump through a window with my hands tied behind me. I was locked in a barn with my hands and feet tied. Three men ride in, jump off of their horses, shoo them into stalls without bothering to tether them, and run outside to join in the gunplay; they bolted the door from the outside as they left. I manage to work my feet free and jump onto one of their horses. In order to get out of the barn I was to jump the horse through the window; my hands are tied behind me and I am to hold the reins in my teeth. The panes of the window were made of sugar and resin and put together with balsa wood. In order to go through the window, the horse did not jump but rather they had a steep ramp to run him down and he crashed into it. You could not see through the glass. Production was held up while awaiting the arrival of a horse from Hudkins Stables which furnished the stock for Republic.”

“Here I was, sitting on this strange horse with my hands tied behind my back (we had shot the part where I had jumped onto his back from a bale of hay) and I am holding the nasty tasting reins in my teeth. The director told me this would be a one-time shot, no retakes. Making up another window would not only be costly but time consuming as well. Cameras would be shooting from all different angles. I noticed a lot of people from other sets had congregated, then I spied the ambulance. I asked one of the property men about it, and he said, ‘With something like this you never can tell.’ The men in the barn with me started to finger their lash whips; they meant to see that this horse went through that window. The call for ‘Action’ came and all hell broke loose: each one of
Dorothy, with hands tied behind her back, rides toward window. those whip happy loons seemed to think he was the only one there and getting the horse through the window was up to him alone. Crash! Out the window we went…and went…and went. The pickup men who were to catch the horse were having trouble trying to overtake us. There was nothing I could do with my hands tied behind me, and I had long since dropped the reins I held in my mouth for fear of losing all of my teeth. Of course, they eventually caught up with me and dragged the horse and me back to the set where I was congratulated for a fine job. It was then I looked at the poor horse I had been riding. True, the candy glass did not cut, but the wood had. The horse had several long scratches. After looking it over, the head wrangler came over to tell me the horse was all right. The director, overhearing this, said, ‘That’s right, it might have been your face. You know we were all very worried about that scene. In the picture where a stuntman doubled for the star in ‘Jesse James,’ for the jump through the window he had a hat pulled down, partly covering his face.’”

"Mysterious Doctor Satan" poster.“And so the serial was now finished. In the meantime, I was presented to an up-and-coming Western star who had the privilege of choosing his own leading ladies. Mr. Yates thought I might be a nice addition to his cast, but the cowboy singer was not impressed; he felt I would be a distraction. He preferred weepy, clinging damsels and not, as he said after looking at some of the rushes from my recent little endeavor, ‘A female Tarzan of the Apes.’ Mr. Yates said he would instruct the head of casting at his studio to use me whenever possible. My future at Republic seemed debatable.”

“At this point the Cole Bros. Circus came to town. Everyone had been wondering where in the world I had been hiding myself; they wanted me to come back to their show. The wandering gypsy was going home to the circus where she belonged.”

Cheat Endings

At the end of Ch. 10 of “Mysterious Dr. Satan”, the Copperhead is knocked off a high walkway at the gas plant as a heavy (Bert La Baron) shoves a block and tackle on a cable at him. The Copperhead falls to his doom. However, in Ch. 11, he’s seen grabbing a cable and saving himself. That cable was nowhere in evidence in Ch, 10 as the Copperhead falls freely.

 

 

 

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