The Serial Squadron Cinema Cliffhanger Archive


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✦✦✦ (Republic, 12 Episodes)
Charles Quigley, Linda Stirling, Clayton Moore
D: William Witney

Professor Chambers demonstrates his new invention, the cyclotrode, to his associates, and soon after is pursued by agents of a caped fiend called the Crimson Ghost, a disguised and demented University professor wearing a skull mask and hooded crimson cape. The Cyclotrode is capable of disrupting all sorts of electronic signals and said to even be able to assume control of a nuclear missile, and with it the Crimson Ghost desires to assume total power. Criminologist Duncan Richards tries to avoid the masked villains' mind‑control collars, which bend victims to his will, and uncover his true identity.

Contents: 12 Episodes, restored excellent quality picture and audio, Theatrical trailer

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(Entire serial on 1 disk, full quality)

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Gang Busters
✦✦✦✦ (Universal, 13 Chapters)
Kent Taylor, Ralph Morgan
D: Ray Taylor, Noel Smith

Dr. Mortis, a disgraced scientist, creates the League of Murdered Men by having criminals pronounced dead and then reviving them in his subterranean lair to do his bidding. Detectives Bannister and Logan take the case, and reporter Vicky Logan tries to get the story.

View Online Video:
Chapter 1: The League of Murdered Men

Transfer Quality: A sharp Rank Cintel transfer from an original print, in glorious black and white.
DVD Contents: All 12 chapters digitally restored, bios, illustrated menus
Special Features: Original theatrical trailer, cast bios.

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Beatrice Fairfax
✦✦✦ (Wharton, 15 Episodes)
Grace Darling, Harry Fox
D: Ted & Leo Wharton

The original advice-to-the-lovelorn reporter and her comical and clever friend Jimmy Barton investigate unusual situations brought to their attention by letters written to the Evening Standard newspaper. Filmed in Ithaca, New York
Influenced by: The Active Life of Dolly of the Dailies serial
Influenced: Perils of Our Girl Reporters, possibly Lois Lane and Jimmy Olsen in Superman stories

View Online Video: Episode 2: The Adventure of the Jealous Wife

SECOND EDITION December 2018

DVD Contents: 2-DVD Set; Includes all new updated titles, all 14 restored and newly scored episodes, reconstructed Episode 1, the previously missing original ending of "Billy's Romance," an introductory documentary, and a cast "curtain call" (about 7 hours of content) See the Wharton Serials Collection DVD page for the complete episode listing.
Special Features: Mini-documentary about the real-life Beatrice Fairfax and her column as well as the fictional character’s history, cast "Curtain Call" (photo slideshow)

This title is also available as a Hybrid Blu-Ray
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The Wolf Dog
✦✦✦✦ (Mascot, 12 Chapters)
Frankie Darro, George Lewis, Rin Tin Tin
D: Colbert Clark/Howard

Young Frank Courtney, who discovers he is heir to a shipping line, escapes an abusive stepfather in Alaska and heads for California only to find himself marked for death by the crooked president of the company he has inherited. Frank is defended by Bob Whitlock, a ship's radio operator, and Pal, a German Shepherd raised by wolves.

An underrated, dramatic and suspenseful serial that keeps your interest throughout, and a nice transfer too. The cast also includes silent film star Henry B. Walthall.

View Online Video: Chapter 1: The Fugitive

Transfer Quality: All-new digital transfer from an extremely rare 16mm original print which exhibits occasional minor defects but the picture and audio quality in general is excellent.

DVD Contents: DL-DVD, black and white, complete serial
Released February 18, 2015

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The Lost Special
✦✦✦ (Universal, 12 Chapters)
Frank Albertson, Cecelia Parker
D: Henry MacRae

After the local police have failed to discover its location, college adventurers Tom Hood and Bob Collins and reporter Betty Moore think they can find a train which has disappeared without a trace.

Transfer Quality: Restored from videotape source. Print quality is excellent with no scratches, artifacts, or splices. Transfer quality is not great; image is stable but focus is soft and contrast is sometimes OK sometimes not. Ch. 11 is grainy and has been partially smoothed. Audio restored to remove 95% of hiss; some auto-level artifacts remain; missing sound at end of Ch. 8 replaced. General effect is average old VHS quality with strong sound.

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DVD Contents: Complete serial
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Holt of the Secret Service
✦✦✦ (15 Chapters)
Jack Holt, Evelyn Brent D: James W. Horne

Jailbreak at the state prison! Use caution -- these men are desperate!
Gangsters try to outrace hawk-faced mob smasher and secret service man Jack Holt on the highway (Step on it! The police are on our tail!) and the tough talk and action never stops from there. Tris Coffin and gang are operating a counterfeiting scheme from their cliffside hideout, down the rapids and past a roaring waterfall. Holt and his boss Malloy (Zorro's Fighting Legion's C. Montague Shaw) decide to try to pass Holt off as wanted felon Nick Farrell to infiltrate the gang. Equally tough-talking (Want me to weep in a bucket?) Miss Drew poses as his wife (not moll -- wife, and don't you forget it. Want to see the certificate?) and fights beside Jack to defeat the gangsters' schemes.
Influenced: Fearless Fosdick character in Dick Tracy comic strip

View Online Video: Chapter 1

Transfer Quality: Digitally mastered from an excellent quality original TV print with superior contrast and grey tones,
DVD Contents:
15 chapters, featuring illustrated menus with chapter indexes, and scene markers within chapters. In glorious black and white, with restored sound.
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Radio Patrol
✦✦✦ (12 Chapters)
Grant Withers, Frank Lackteen
D: Ford Beebe, Cliff Smith

Kindly John P. Adams develops a formula for flexible, bulletproof steel and is murdered by someone who wishes to obtain the formula. At least three groups, as it turns out, are scrambling to grab the secret, including a mysterious inhabitant of the city's Egyptian quarter called Tahata who uses his powers of hypnotism to control the minds of underlings. Pat O'Hara, the radio patrolman is assigned to the case, and is assisted by Pinky Adams, the inventor's young son.

Transfer Quality: Digital transfer from excellent quality original 16mm print with one chapter in lesser quality than others; audio restored
DVD Contents: 2-DVD set, complete serial
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The Iron Claw
✦✦✦ (15 Chapters)
Charles Quigley, Charles King
D: James W. Horne

Reporter Bob Lane and photographer Jack "Flash" Strong investigate mysterious doings at the Anton Benson mansion after the murder of Anton's brother and discover that a gangster called Silk and his hoodlums would like the treasure that Anton is desperately trying to move to safer territory. Equally active in mischief is the Iron Claw himself, who thrives on sliding panels and elaborate lethal devices.
Influenced by: Silent serial The Iron Claw featuring Pearl White and Sheldon Lewis
Influenced: The Perils of Penelope Pitstop villain "The Hooded Claw"