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Timothy Patrick Quill
Britt Reid, daring young owner/publisher of "The Daily Sentinel," dons a mask and fights crime as The Green Hornet. While the police and public believe the Hornet to be a ruthless criminal, the District Attorney knows Reid's secret identity, and welcomes his assistance in fighting racketeers and criminals. Also assisting Reid in his crusade are his secretary, Lenore Case, and his faithful valet, Kato, who is a kung fu expert and who drives the sleek "Black Beauty," the Hornet's well armed car.Written by
Leonard R. Cleavelin <email@example.com>
Kato is a Japanese name, as in the 1936 radio show Kato was Japanese. This was changed in 1939 due to world events. Kato briefly became Korean before settling on Filipino for nearly all of the 1940s. By the 1960s, he was regarded as a generic Asian, enabling Chinese-American Bruce Lee to be cast. Kato is also Chinese in Seth Rogen's The Green Hornet (2011) as a tribute to Lee, but post-1967-pre-2011 adaptations in other media such as comic books, frequently restore the Japanese origin. See more »
A mistake which runs throughout all Green Hornet incarnations is pronouncing the Japanese name Kato as Kayto rather than the correct Kahto. See more »
Another challenge for the Green Hornet, his aide Kato, and their rolling arsenal, the Black Beauty. On Police records a wanted criminal, Green Hornet is really Britt Reid, owner-publisher of the Daily Sentinel, his dual identity known only to his secretary and to the district attorney. And now, to protect the rights and lives of decent citizens, rides THE GREEN HORNET."
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Episodes were edited together to form movies for video/DVD release in Asia. See more »
"The Green Hornet" first started his long crime-fighting career-and remains to this day-an urban variation of the Western cowboy hero The Lone Ranger. In fact,the popular version of the "Green Hornet",a vigilante superhero,was first imagined by Lone Ranger originator George W. Trindle,and writer Fran Striker in the late 1930's,first appearing on radio,and later on during the 1940's made the transition from radio to theaters with two low budget but very popular multi-part serials which starred Gordon Jones as the heroic Britt Reid and Keye Luke as his ever devoted sidekick Kato. "The Green Hornet" being so very popular in the movies and on the radio made the leap into the comics too. Over the years the character has appeared in comic books series from publishers Holyoke to Harvey Comics,Dell Comics,and finally to coincide with the Gold Key in the 1960's,as part of the TV series,and most recently in DC Comics. As part of the story of The Green Hornet is concerned,the story genealogically speaking,was a man who was bent on fighting for justice and triumphs over the forces of evil. In fact,The Green Hornet,Daily Sentinal owner and millionaire Britt Reid,was the grand-nephew of John Reid,The Lone Ranger. More to the point,Britt modeled his life on his famous ancestor,right down to his life's mission,choice of sidekick and job-related gear. Instead of an Native American sidekick(Tonto),Britt Reid worked with another "ethnic" outsider,the Asian adversary and humble servant and sidekick Kato. Instead of a great white steed named Silver,Britt chased down criminals in a rolling black arsenal called The Black Beauty. Both heroes fought their criminals with masks and hats,to hide their secret identities. The Green Hornet's main nemesis was the mob and corruption,rather than rustlers,nefarious cowboys and Indians,but if you think about it his dedication to fighting crime was about the same as his grand-uncle's in which the setting was the mean streets of the big city instead of the wild west.
Despite these variations,especially during the mid-1960's that "The Green Hornet" continued onward in popularity in the new format of the series created by William Dozier,who was executive producer of this series under his company Greenway Productions and produced through Twentieth Century-Fox Television. In the spring of 1966,after the runaway success of "Batman",every major television network at the time was looking to repeat the success of the Adam West-Burt Ward series which was a huge hit for ABC. Usually with the other silly or campy which consisted of shows like "Captain Nice and Mister Terrific",or for that manner the spy genre of "Get Smart",and "The Man From U.N.C.L.E.", Dozier was behind the brains of adapting "The Green Hornet" for television,though he also had the rights to create other projects for television,DC's Wonder Woman(which wasn't produced until the 1970's),and Dick Tracy. The TV series starred Van Williams as Britt Reid,and Bruce Lee as his loyal companion and fierce sidekick Kato. For the most part,the series was more serious than Dozier's "Batman",since most of the attention went toward Bruce Lee,who would go on to become one of the greatest International action stars of all time,due to this series. But the real star of "The Green Hornet" was a customized 1966 black Chrysler Imperial. As far as the villains were concerned,this was a show that did not have freaks who wore outrageous outfits,but some of the villains on the show were either counterfeiters,bootleggers,thieves, corrupt politicians,drug runners,crooked cops,and arsonists. For the most part this was basically your average "crime drama" with a kick. As far as the action were concern,the fight scenes were often brutal with Bruce Lee showing some of his breathtaking martial arts action,which was the best part of the entire show. The series also starred Wende Wagner,Lloyd Gough and Walter Brooke. Only 26 episodes were produced for ABC-TV which ran for one season from its premiere episode on September 9, 1966 and ended on March 17,1967. The show was on Friday nights and had some stiff competition against the fantastically inventive and popular,"The Wild,Wild West"(CBS,1965-1969), and also against the Ron Ely series "Tarzan"(NBC,1966-1969). It was preceded by the Irwin Allen action/science fiction series "The Time Tunnel"(ABC,1966-1967). In order to save the show and boost ratings,the two superheroes met on an "Batman" episode titled "A Piece Of The Action"(3/1/67),and its continuation "Batman's Satisfaction"(3/2/67)where The Green Hornet and Batman(along with Robin and Kato)take on a diabolical villain played by Roger C. Carmel. As the result of low-ratings,The Green Hornet was cancelled by ABC after just one season,but with the episodes it was rarely run or rarely seen in its original form in syndication,which is still rarely seen today but can be seen again through the advanced technology of video and DVD. Shortly after the demise of the series,the success of Bruce Lee proved phenomenal beyond belief. After his death in 1973,he was still quite popular,and a compilation film consisting of Green Hornet episodes was released here in the states to great acclaim. The films were released between 1973 and 1976. The second Green Hornet film called "Fury Of The Dragon",released in 1976 was a smash hit with audiences.
In recent years,there has been talk of bringing the adventures of The Green Hornet to the big screen,and there is a feature film in the works directed by Kevin Smith and starring Jason Mewes as Britt Reid and Jet Li as Kato.
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