Filmed in the Sierra Nevada mountains near Sonora, California, this Universal serial (made in that short two-year span of time when they chose to be identified as The New Universal) is ...
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Filmed in the Sierra Nevada mountains near Sonora, California, this Universal serial (made in that short two-year span of time when they chose to be identified as The New Universal) is Universal's 40th sound-era serial, made and released between "Red Barry" and "Buck Rogers", and has Eagle Scout Bruce Scott, leader of Martinsville Troop Number One, and his pack setting off in search of lost treasure, using a map provided by Tenderfoot scout Skeets Scanlon Scoutmaster Hale leaves the expedition to rush home to an ailing wife, but Bruce and the scouts push on and the map leads them to "Ghost Town", where the treasure turns out to be a large cache of counterfeit $20 bills and the plates used to print them. The troop also discover a lost branch of Inca Indians living in the mountains and still undetected in 1939. The tribe gives ferocious efforts to keep the scouts from discovering their Temple cave because it contains a huge radium deposit known to them only for its ability to heal ... Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
Skeets Scanlon discovers a treasure map and has his scoutmaster Bruce Scott assemble his scout troop to search for it. Skeets' father has a slight connection with the map since his brother Denny was involved with a group of counterfeiters and the map leads to the location where the crooks hid the fake cash. Turk Mortenson, leader of the counterfeiters, abducts Scanlon to force him to make plates for their operations. G-Man Hal Marvin would also like to know the whereabouts of Scanlon, since he believes that Scanlon is a part of Mortenson's gang. While battling the crooks, the Scouts also have to encounter a renegade teen Rip Rawson as well as an undiscovered tribe of Indians, who have a store of radium on their reservation. This is another example of a Universal serial that must have originally conceived as a B movie, but stretched unnecessarily to a chapterplay. The serial does have the decent amount of action, good heroes & villains, and a continuous storyline to keep a kid coming back for 12 weeks, but I doubt that a kid would have gone out of his way to come back. I think the serial could have been improved if the treasure angle and Indian tribe played a bigger role, rather than focus on the counterfeiters angle again & again. Rating, based on serials, 5.
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