Columbia's 43rd serial finds Lex Luthor, secretly the Atom Man, blackmailing the city of Metropolis by threatening to destroy the entire community. Perry White, editor of "The Daily Planet", assigns Lois Lane, Jimmy Olson and Clark Kent/Superman to cover the story. Luthor invents a number of deadly devices to plague the city, including a disintegrating machine which can reduce people to their basic atoms and reassemble them in another place. But Superman manages to thwart each scheme. Since Kryptonite can rob Superman of his powers, Luthor decides to create a synthetic Kryptonite and putters about obtaining the necessary ingredients: plutonium, radium and the undefined 'etc.'(in order to keep viewers from trying this at home). Luthor places the Kryptonite at the launching of a ship, with Superman in attendance. He is exposed to the Kryptonite and passes out. Superman is taken off in an ambulance driven by Luthor's henchmen, and he is now under the control of Luthor. Superman is placed... Written by
Les Adams <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Based on the SUPERMAN adventure feature appearing in SUPERMAN and ACTION COMICS magazines and in daily and Sunday newspapers coast to coast, Adapted from the SUPERMAN radio program, (all original posters and ads) See more »
In chapter one the shot of Luthor destroying the bridge is actual footage of the original Tacoma Narrows Bridge that opened in 1940 (also known as "Galloping Gertie"). The footage used is that of the bridge in its final moments prior to its collapse on November 7, 1940, shot on 16mm Kodachrome motion picture film by Barney Elliott and Harbine Monroe of a Tacoma-area camera shop. See more »
At the climax of chapter twelve, the villains turn their heat ray on the Daily Planet building, causing all the mechanical devices to spark. As Clark Kent, Kirk Alyn shields his face, but the radio on his desk fails to give off any sparks. See more »
Now that I've seen the second of the two Superman serials, I am convinced that Kirk Alyn is the worst actor ever to don Superman's tights. He may be the worst actor to ever don tights, period. George Reeves made Superman and Clark Kent human beings in his television characterization, despite every tendency of the scripts and effects to drag him down to cartoon level. Kirk Alyn's Superman IS a cartoon, even more so than the animated Superman in the flying scenes. He simply has no reality, no thought process, no human believability, and in a fantasy character like Superman, that's fatal. He's not helped, of course, by the terrible dialog inflicted upon the actors, none of whom come within a zillion miles of their best work (and for some of them, that's saying something!). One cannot come to a serial with the expectation of seeing great art or even the believability of a popular art of which Casablanca or Gone With the Wind are examples. But the two Superman serials were complete disappointments to me, even within my limited experience of serials. The Dick Tracy serials, the Batman serials, even the John Wayne serials, seem miles ahead of these two, though I wanted very much to like them. Maybe if George Reeves had been in them.... But poor George had it rough enough. Let's not inflict these on him.
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