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The Vigilantes Are Coming (1936)

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A masked hero called "The Eagle" leads California ranchers in a struggle against Russian Cossacks who are plotting to take over California and turn it into a Russian colony.


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Title: The Vigilantes Are Coming (1936)

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Livingston ...
Kay Hughes ...
Doris Colton
Guinn 'Big Boy' Williams ...
Raymond Hatton ...
Fred Kohler ...
General Jason Burr
Robert Warwick ...
William Farnum ...
Father José
Bob Kortman ...
Boris Petroff
John Merton ...
Rance Talbot, Burr Henchman
Lloyd Ingraham ...
John Colton
William Desmond ...
Anderson, Vigilante Member
Yakima Canutt ...
Henchman Barsam [Ch. 1]
Tracy Layne ...
Bud Pope ...
Steve Clemente ...
Pedro, Burr's Spanish Henchman [Chs. 1-6]


A masked hero called "The Eagle" leads California ranchers in a struggle against Russian Cossacks who are plotting to take over California and turn it into a Russian colony.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

russian | california | rancher | hero | cossack | See more »




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Release Date:

22 August 1936 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

I ekdikisis tou Mavrou Aetou  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(12 episodes) | (cut)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor High Fidelity Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

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User Reviews

It's...The Eagle!
6 August 2001 | by (Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) – See all my reviews

"The Vigilantes Are Coming" is one of the first, if not the first, serials released by the then newly formed Republic Pictures. It doesn't seem too constrained by budgetary constraints as it boasts the proverbial "cast of thousands".

The vigilantes of the title are a group of ranchers led by a Zorro like figure known as "The Eagle". What makes this story different, is the idea of Imperial Russia plotting to colonize early 19th century California and Cossack soldiers ridin' the range. As always, there's plenty of action and the usual heart stopping cliff hangers and last minute escapes.

As in most Republic serials, there is a cast of familiar faces. Leading the way is Robert Livingston as the hero whose father and brother are gunned down in the first chapter by Yakima Canutt. This forces Livingston to assume the identity of a mild mannered church organist whose alter ego is "The Eagle". The chief villain, Jason Burr who plots to be the governor "of the new Russian colony" is played by Fred Kohler who graced many a "B" western.

The Eagle is given two sidekicks in this one, Guinn (Big Boy)Williams and Raymond Hatton. Heading up the Russian contingent are Robert Warwick as Count Rasminoff and veteran bad guy Robert Kortman as Petroff, the head Cossack. Backing up Kohler are such "B" veterans as John Merton, Bud Osborne and Canutt. Former silent star William Farnum is along as Father Jose head of the mission where the Eagle hides out and Kay Hughes as the typical helpless serial heroine. Ray (Crash) Corrigan, who would team up with Livingston later that year to form two-thirds of "The Three Mesquiteers", appears unbilled as Captain Fremont head of the American brigade.

Despite the large cast, there were too few fist fights and too much running around. But as with all Republic serials, the production values were top notch and it was a cut above most other studios output.

Beware though that many of the mid-chapter cliffhangers don't match up with "the escape" in the ensuing chapters.

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