A legally dead police detective decides to battle crime as a masked superhero.

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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Spirit / Denny Colt (as Sam Jones)
...
...
Eubie
Garry Walberg ...
Les Lannom ...
Officer King
Laura Robinson ...
P'Gell Roxton (as McKinlay Robinson)
...
Simon Teasdale
...
Sevrin
John Allen ...
Bruno
Sarah Dammann ...
Hilde
...
Victim
Ernestine Mercer ...
Martha
Annibal Llende ...
Ricardo
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Storyline

When Denny Colt, detective for the Central City Police Department, survives an assassination attempt by criminals, he is still believed by the public to be dead. He decides to use to his advantage, since being "dead", he isn't subject to the rules that bind regular cops. To this end, he equips an abandoned tomb in a graveyard into a residence and headquarters and prepares for a new career. With that, he becomes the Spirit, a mysterious crime fighter whose only costume is a blue business suit, fedora hat and a little eye mask. His first major case pits him against P'Gell, a femme fatal who has criminal designs on the city. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@execulink.com>

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31 July 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Duh  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the comic book on which the film is based, Eubie is called Ebony White and he is usually depicted as a racial stereotype. The movie changed his name and characterization in an effort to make him more acceptable to audiences of the time. See more »

Quotes

Ellen Dolan: Do I look like the kind of girl who goes around undressing men?
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Connections

References ABC News Nightline (1980) See more »

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User Reviews

A decent, well-intentioned attempt at a classic character
2 December 2001 | by (New Jersey) – See all my reviews

I just saw this unsold pilot for the first time since it aired in 1987, and I was pleasantly surprised to find out that it was much better than I remembered. Sam Jones looked great as the Spirit and he played the part in a tongue-in-cheek manner that was just right. Nana Visitor (STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE 9) was also very good as Ellen Dolan and showed some real chemistry with Jones, as well as a gift for physical comedy (she did start out as a dancer, after all). The fellow who played Commissioner Dolan suited his part very well. The woman who played P'Gell was okay, but she didn't have quite the spark the role needed. A sultry young Joan Collins type would've been better. Eubie (formerly Ebony) White didn't have much to contribute to the plot and consequently didn't make much of an impression. The movie's plot (about some art forgeries at a Central City museum) is more of a straightforward adventure story than anything Will Eisner ever did, which does take away from some of the Spirit's uniqueness. There are a couple of plot holes here and there (why do they have a gravestone for Denny Colt in a Central City cemetery when he was just visiting?), but nothing too heinous. And, if you have more than a passing familiarity with the Spirit, it's all too easy to figure out who the mystery villain is. The movie takes place in 1987 instead the 1940s (with plenty of contemporary references to remind you of that fact). It was too expensive to do it as period piece, I'd imagine. Sometimes the budget limitations are all too evident (Wildwood Cemetery looks like nothing so much as a studio set). And a few too many scenes are daytime ones. But there are a few shots here and there which positively REEK of the right sort of film noir atmosphere. You can definitely tell the creators of the movie had a genuine affection for the Spirit. It would've been very interesting to see where this show would've gone if it had become a series. If you come across a copy somewhere (I was told it originally ran 90 minutes long but it was edited down to 70 before air), check it out, it's worth a look. For another cool movie with a Spirit reference, see THE IRON GIANT.


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