Rocket Men Movie Serial Cliffhanger Collection: King of the Rocket Men (1949), Zombies of the Stratosphere (1952), Radar Men from the Moon (1952), Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe (1953) (8 x DVD)
Rocket Men Movie Serial Cliffhanger Collection
King of the Rocket Men (1949)
King of the Rocket Men is a 1949 12-chapter black-and-white Republic movie serial, produced by Franklin Adreon, directed Fred C. Brannon, that stars Tristram Coffin, Mae Clarke, Don Haggerty, House Peters, Jr., James Craven, and I. Stanford Jolley.
This serial is notable for starring the only serial character who is actually called "Rocket Man", a misnomer fannishly applied to other Republic rocket-powered-suited heroes in serials that followed: Radar Men from the Moon (1952), Zombies of the Stratosphere (1952), and Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe (1953).
Zombies of the Stratosphere (1952)
Zombies of the Stratosphere is a 1952 black-and-white Republic Studios serial that was intended to be their second featuring "new hero" Commando Cody and the third 12-chapter serial featuring the rocket-powered flying jacket and helmet introduced in King of the Rocket Men (1949). Instead, for reasons unknown, the hero was renamed "Larry Martin," who must prevent Martian invaders from using a hydrogen bomb to blow Earth out of its orbit, away from the Sun, so that Mars can take its position. As in Radar Men from the Moon (also released in 1952), most of the screen time for each of the dozen chapters is spent on fistfights and car chases between the heroes and a gang of crooks hired by Narab and his extraterrestrial colleague Marex to steal and stockpile the Atomic supplies needed for construction of the H-bomb.
The serial was directed by Fred C. Brannon, with a screenplay by Ronald Davidson, and the special effects by Republic's Lydecker brothers. The serial is best remembered today as one of the first screen appearances of a young Leonard Nimoy, who plays one of the three Martian invaders, Narab. In 1958, a feature film version of this serial, retitled Satan's Satellites, was made by editing down the serial's footage to feature film length.
Radar Men from the Moon (1952)
Radar Men from the Moon is a 1952 black-and-white Republic Pictures' 12-chapter movie serial, the first Commando Cody serial starring newcomer George Wallace as Cody, Aline Towne as his sidekick Joan Gilbert, and serial veteran Roy Barcroft as the evil Retik, the Ruler of the Moon. The director was Fred C. Brannon, with a screenplay by Ronald Davidson, and special effects by the Lydecker brothers. This serial recycles the flying sequences from Republic's earlier 1949 serial King of the Rocket Men. It was later released by Republic in 1966 as the 100-minute television film Retik the Moon Menace.
Commando Cody (George Wallace) is a civilian researcher and inventor with a number of employees. He uses a streamlined helmet and a sonic-powered rocket backpack attached to a leather flying jacket. Cody also uses a rocket ship capable of reaching the Moon. When the U. S. finds itself under attack from a mysterious force that can wipe out entire military bases and industrial complexes, Cody surmises (correctly) that the Earth is coming under attack from our own Moon. He then flies his rocket ship there and confronts the Moon's dictator, Retik (Roy Barcroft), who boldly announces his plans to both conquer Earth and then move the Moon's entire population here using spaceships.
Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe (1953)
Dangerous weather and climate changes are ravaging the earth and masked super-scientist Commando Cody is approached by the government to investigate. Among the tools at his disposal are a jet-powered one-man flying suit, and a rocket ship. With his colleagues Joan and Ted, who is later replaced by Dick, he ascertains the disasters are being caused by space-alien forces led by a mysterious "Ruler" of unknown planetary origins, with occasional help from earth-born criminals. Warding off dangers, Cody and his associates are able to methodically close in on the culprits, and reveal The Ruler to be a rogue from Venus who meets his end on Mercury with the help of the Mercurians.
Contained in: Transparent Plastic Wallets.
Format: Either PAL or NTSC (depending on world location), Region 0 (Multi-Region/Worldwide).