Chapter Titles: 1. The Fifth Column Strikes; 2. Dead End; 3. Man Hunt; 4. Trapped; 5. Test Flight; 6. Double Danger; 7. Death Takes the Witness; 8. Counterfeit Trail; 9. Ambush; 10.Sky Raiders; 11.Trail of Death; 12.Code of the Rangers. See more »
In Chapter 10, one of the rangers notes the time as 5 AM, yet when King and Pedro step outside a moment later, the sun is directly overhead. It is obviously midday, not early morning, judging by the short shadows. See more »
Slingin' Sam sets the standard for Quarterbacks in a serial.
Shortly after the conclusion of the 1940 NFL season, Republic executive Bill Saal (Texas Christian University alum)called Washington Redskins quarterback Sammy Baugh (Texas Christian University alum)at his ranch near Rotan, Texas about the prospects of Baugh starring in a Republic serial; A telephone conversation that led to one of the best overall serials Republic Pictures Corporation produced in their valley of the cliffhangers.
Republic assigned five writers to this serial and each writer was given a specific chapter to work on: Norman S. Hall on Chapter 1 (The Fifth Column Strikes) and Chapter 6 (Double Danger); Joseph Poland (and billed as such)on Chapter 2 (Dead End), Chapter 7 (Death Takes the Witness) and Chapter 11 (Trail of Death); William Lively on Chapter 3 (Man Hunt)and Chapter 8 (Counterfeit Trail); Ronald Davidson on Chapter 4 (Trapped), Chapter 9 (Ambush)and Chapter 12 (Code of the Rangers), and Joseph O'Donnell was given Chapter 5 (Test Flight) and Chapter 10 (Sky Raiders.) Based on the order of chapter numbers (1-2-3-4-5) one might assume (if one was given to making assumptions and there are ones who do) that such was the writer's order on the screen credits...but one would assume (as assumers often do) incorrectly. Republic, as they most often did, credited the writers in (nearly) alpha order on the screen credits ( Davidson, Hall, Lively, Poland and O'Donnell, and gave each an Original Screen Play (not a typo and not written as one word--- Screenplay) credit.
The October, 1941 release of this serial pre-dated The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and FDR's Declaration of War against the Axis powers by more than two months (and most of the writing assignments carry April, 1941 dates), and is just one of the many "watch-out"/preparation films and serials Hollywood produced circa 1938-December 7, 1941. Truly, taken in context of the time and era and limitations of serial budgets (and judged against serials and not "Citizen Kane",) "King of the Texas Rangers" ranks high as a great example of serial-making at its best.
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