1950s superman tv series

1950s superman tv series


  • Adventures of Superman
  • collider.com
  • www.cbr.com
  • Adventures of Superman TV shows to watch free online
  • Adventures of Superman, The
  • Adventures of Superman

    Share Tweet Email "Look! Up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Superman! If you really want to appreciate the achievements of modern-day superhero TV shows and movies, do yourself a favor and revisit this classic television series which has origins that reach back before the advent of color TV. It's also an absolute necessity for the Superman completists among you. Running for six seasons and episodes from to , Adventures of Superman took the title hero out of the radio recording studio and onto television screens in living rooms across the nation.

    Known for a grueling filming schedule, a bargain-basement effects budget, and tumultuous personal issues for cast members, Adventures of Superman nonetheless became a surprise hit, thanks in part to the popularity of the Superman comics and the fact that it was eventually filmed and broadcast in color. In concert with "Superman Week" here on Collider, we've put together a selection of some must-watch episodes of the series that you simply need to see; it'll certainly make you appreciate just how far the Man of Steel has come in 60 years.

    Honorable Mention: "Superman and the Mole Men" Our first episode on the must-watch list is actually an honorable mention because it's a two-part TV movie that served as the pilot for Adventures of Superman. Half police procedural and half sci-fi short, "Superman and the Mole Men" has a lot of the familiar elements that fans of the series would come to know and love, but it also has a fairly ambitious approach to storytelling. Rather than having Superman simply swoop in to save the day, this special actually attempted to use the hero to make some social commentary.

    While this certainly doesn't sound thrilling, things soon take a Twilight Zone type turn. Before long, radioactive mole men from the center of the Earth crawl up through the six-mile deep hole and begin to cause a panic in the local community. What's interesting in this tale is that Superman doesn't simply fight the diminutive mole men, but actually protects them from a violent and unruly mob that springs up. At one point, Superman literally calls the townspeople "Nazi stormtroopers" and then takes their guns away from them after they injure one of the mole men.

    Superman's only allies in town are Lois, a rebellious doctor who volunteers to operate on the wounded mole man, and the local boss of the oil-drilling operation.

    The conclusion isn't exactly a feel-good ending, but rather a bittersweet one. Don't get me wrong, "All That Glitters" is very silly. It's clearly one of the show's color broadcasts, which were so expensive at the time that little money was left for the cast, crew, and special effects. That fact, along with the fatigue and declining morale on set in later seasons, led to some lackluster and lackadaisical episodes.

    This final episode features Phil Tead in his occasional role of Professor Pepperwinkle, a bumbling scientist whose experiments tend to cause trouble for Superman.

    This time around, Pepperwinkle appears to have solved the age-old alchemical quest to turn scrap metal into gold. When Jimmy Olsen blabs about the Professor's research, two greedy goons kidnap Pepperwinkle and finance his operation, hoping to get rich on ill-gotten gold. This is all pretty straightforward until Jimmy gets knocked on the head by one of Pepperwinkle's traps meant to subdue the crooks, and in his stupor he hallucinates that he and Lois take some Kryptonite pills that grant them the powers of Superman.

    What follows is a fun series of events that sees Lois and Jimmy flying, crashing through walls, and taking down the crooks with their new abilities. Of course this is all in Jimmy's head. It comes down to Superman to save the day in the end. I guess I never will. This half hour is a classic telling of Superman's origin story and might actually be my favorite version of the oft-told tale. It's a sweeping sci-fi story that starts out with our narrator taking us through space to the planet Krypton where a council has been gathered to discuss plans to manage the natural disasters afflicting their world.

    Jor-El, their best scientist, lays out a rather apocalyptic scenario and a far-fetched escape plan, but the other council members literally laugh him out of the meeting. What follows is the well-trod tale of baby Kal-El being placed into the test rocket and sent to Earth as Krypton is destroyed in delightfully low-tech effects fashion.

    Adventures of Superman gives us a variation on Superman's adopted parents as Sarah and Eben Kent come across the crashed rocket and raise the baby inside it as their own. The show even takes time to check in on a year-old Clark who's worried about why he's so different from all the other kids. Don't worry though, a year-old Clark soon makes his way to Metropolis--after Pa Kent dies of a heart attack--and soon earns his position on the Daily Planet staff when he shows that he has a connection with the mysterious and recently arrived hero, Superman.

    There's a cute little back and forth between Clark and Lois in which Clark almost literally winks at the camera; he might as well say, "I'm totally Superman. In the penultimate episode, "The Perils of Superman", a disgruntled crook wearing a giant lead mask that's locked onto his neck Dressed in his clever or so he thinks disguise that's impervious to Superman's x-ray vision, the unnamed criminal promises Clark, Lois, Jimmy, and Perry that he has a team of 10 men dressed exactly like him, and that they'll soon come for them to give them their just deserts.

    With Superman distracted by the various crooks, he'll be unable to save all of the Daily Planet workers What unfolds is a zany if at times lazily acted plot that finds Perry White strapped to a log at a saw mill, Lois Line tied to railroad tracks on the other side of town, Jimmy Olsen driving down a curvy mountainside road with sabotaged brake and steering lines, and Clark suspended above a vat of boiling acid.

    The head crook--who certainly has severe lead poisoning at this point--admits to Clark that he's a fan of classic movies and the way they dispose of do-gooders, just before leaving the reporter to be disintegrated. But of course, Superman is unaffected by the vat of boiling acid so he simply crawls out and flies off to rescue his compatriots.

    It's a fun sequence in which Superman busts in in the nick of time to save each of them, with enough spare seconds to stop and chat about the other friends of theirs who are in peril.

    Luckily, Jimmy has the presence of mind to dive out of his car before it goes over the cliff since Superman doesn't quite make it in time to prevent that.

    What's interesting here, other than the ridiculousness of the scheme, is that Superman IDs the ringleader of the gang based on the fact that his x-ray vision reveals the key in his pocket that unlocks all the masks. This is also one of three episodes directed by Reeves. The third is "The Brainy Burro. Though most of the stories in Adventures of Superman feature the title hero taking on very human criminals in situations that are just a bit too hairy for the police to handle, this Season 2 episode actually pits Superman against a threat that only he can take on.

    A meteor threatens to smash into the Earth and its point of impact just so happens to be Metropolis. You'd think that Superman could handle a simple asteroid bound for Earth, right? Well, as the snarky scientist at the observatory points out, the space rock could be full of foreign chemicals that could very well affect Superman in unexpected ways. And that's exactly what happens. Though Superman stops the meteor from falling onto Metropolis--it now orbits the Earth like a second moon--the resulting collision knocks him back to Earth and gives him amnesia.

    The Daily Planet staff tries to jog his memory, even as Clark nearly reveals his identity as Superman by undressing in front of Jimmy, but it's to no avail. It's not until the meteor starts to fall back to Earth that the threat of world destruction forces Clark to take action, even though he doesn't know that he's actually Superman.

    He takes a literal leap of faith out of his apartment window and finds, to his relief, that he can still fly. This episodes takes a crazy turn as Superman doesn't just smash up the asteroid, he actually lands on it and uses an explosive device cobbled together by the elderly scientist to blow it up. Except he gets himself caught in the explosion in the process; no matter, though, because he's Superman. I love that, even up until the end, Clark wasn't quite sure that he'd be able to survive the blast but went ahead with the plan anyway because it was the necessary thing to do.

    It's a fantastic episode that gives Superman some rarely seen moments of vulnerability that put the planet in actual peril, even if we knew that everything was going to be fine all along. For one thing, it gave Reeves the opportunity to add a third face to his character. He'd been playing the mild-mannered Clark Kent and the heroic Superman for quite a few episodes at this point, but this installment allowed him to play the hilarious small-time crook known as Boulder.

    The premise of "The Face and the Voice" is that a clever criminal hires the henchman Boulder Reeves and pays him to undergo plastic surgery and voice training to take on the appearance of Superman.

    It's a crazy plan, made crazier by the fact that another henchman by the name of Scratchy sneaks into Perry White's office to steal a prized record of "A Speech by Superman" from the editor's personal files. What really sells the silliness in this episode is Reeves' surprising range and convincing portrayal of Boulder, a stereotypical thick-headed gangster who struggles with his transformation into Superman.

    The plot then thickens as the fake Superman begins robbing local shops and jewelry stores, but then inexplicably donates the ill-gotten gains to charity.

    The plan takes a weird turn when it's revealed that the mastermind intended to confuse the real Superman into making him think he was losing his mind. Then, in the meantime, the fake Superman would convince the politicians and the police that they couldn't do anything to stop him, so they should just stay out of his way, for instance, when he goes to rob a gold delivery. Surprisingly, the plan seems to work since Clark goes to his doctor friend for a psychological examination and isn't convinced when he gets a clean bill of health.

    It's such a silly episode, but Reeves shines in a role that lets him flex his humorous abilities. After all, Adventures of Superman is a show about an alien humanoid who flies around in his underwear to rescue folks from lead-headed gangsters, meteors, and mole men; it's okay to have a little fun with it. Do you have a favorite episode? Let us know in the comments below! And you can check out every episode of Adventures of Superman on Amazon now! Catch up on the rest of our Superman Week coverage below:.

    collider.com

    Yes, it was low budget. Yes, they used stock footage. But oh, how we loved it! The storyline of the Man of Steel is known to all. Beginning as a comic written by teens in , through radio in Bud Collyer played Superman , as feature length cartoons from to , to 15 movie serials in and Kirk Alyn as Superman , then to the big screen in as Superman and the Mole Men with George Reeves in the lead, the Man of Steel grew in popularity.

    Television propelled mild-mannered Clark Kent and his alter ego Superman into millions of American homes. After that we all knew that Kryptonite was a really bad thing and that Superman must have had a problem with doors as he usually crashed through a wall to enter a room.

    We waited for Lois Lane to figure it out. For a smart woman, she seemed oblivious to the odd coincidence that Clark vanished whenever Superman appeared. Phyllis Coates left the show. She had always wanted to be a comedienne and did try in a couple of other series, all of which were short-lived. She was ably replaced by Noel Neill. Superman the character continued on with Christopher Reeve in the feature films role. This piece of casting would present a particularly heart wrenching contrast after Mr.

    Passings Regrettably, in , George Reeves was found in his home, dead from a handgun shot. His death was ruled an apparent suicide caused by his depression over being unable to find suitable work because he had been typecast as Superman.

    However, the circumstances were conflicting, and many believe, to this day, that he was murdered. John Hamilton died in of a heart attack, as did Robert Shayne in Noel Neill lived to be 95, she passed peacefully in Noel Neill and.

    Share Tweet Email "Look!

    www.cbr.com

    Up in the sky! It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Superman! If you really want to appreciate the achievements of modern-day superhero TV shows and movies, do yourself a favor and revisit this classic television series which has origins that reach back before the advent of color TV.

    It's also an absolute necessity for the Superman completists among you. Running for six seasons and episodes from toAdventures of Superman took the title hero out of the radio recording studio and onto television screens in living rooms across the nation.

    Known for a grueling filming schedule, a bargain-basement effects budget, and tumultuous personal issues for cast members, Adventures of Superman nonetheless became a surprise hit, thanks in part to the popularity of the Superman comics and the fact that it was eventually filmed and broadcast in color.

    In concert with "Superman Week" here on Collider, we've put together a selection of some must-watch episodes of the series that you simply need to see; it'll certainly make you appreciate just how far the Man of Steel has come in 60 years.

    Honorable Mention: "Superman and the Mole Men" Our first episode on the must-watch list is actually an honorable mention because it's a two-part TV movie that served as the pilot for Adventures of Superman. Half police procedural and half sci-fi short, "Superman and the Mole Men" has a lot of the familiar elements that fans of the series would come to know and love, but it also has a fairly ambitious approach to storytelling.

    Rather than having Superman simply swoop in to save the day, this special actually attempted to use the hero to make some social commentary.

    Adventures of Superman TV shows to watch free online

    While this certainly doesn't sound thrilling, things soon take a Twilight Zone type turn. Before long, radioactive mole men from the center of the Earth crawl up through the six-mile deep hole and begin to cause a panic in the local community.

    What's interesting in this tale is that Superman doesn't simply fight the diminutive mole men, but actually protects them from a violent and unruly mob that springs up. At one point, Superman literally calls the townspeople "Nazi stormtroopers" and then takes their guns away from them after they injure one of the mole men. Superman's only allies in town are Lois, a rebellious doctor who volunteers to operate on the wounded mole man, and the local boss of the oil-drilling operation.

    The conclusion isn't exactly a feel-good ending, but rather a bittersweet one.

    Adventures of Superman, The

    Don't get me wrong, "All That Glitters" is very silly. It's clearly one of the show's color broadcasts, which were so expensive at the time that little money was left for the cast, crew, and special effects. That fact, along with the fatigue and declining morale on set in later seasons, led to some lackluster and lackadaisical episodes.

    This final episode features Phil Tead in his occasional role of Professor Pepperwinkle, a bumbling scientist whose experiments tend to cause trouble for Superman. This time around, Pepperwinkle appears to have solved the age-old alchemical quest to turn scrap metal into gold.

    When Jimmy Olsen blabs about the Professor's research, two greedy goons kidnap Pepperwinkle and finance his operation, hoping to get rich on ill-gotten gold. This is all pretty straightforward until Jimmy gets knocked on the head by one of Pepperwinkle's traps meant to subdue the crooks, and in his stupor he hallucinates that he and Lois take some Kryptonite pills that grant them the powers of Superman.

    What follows is a fun series of events that sees Lois and Jimmy flying, crashing through walls, and taking down the crooks with their new abilities. Of course this is all in Jimmy's head. It comes down to Superman to save the day in the end. I guess I never will. This half hour is a classic telling of Superman's origin story and might actually be my favorite version of the oft-told tale. It's a sweeping sci-fi story that starts out with our narrator taking us through space to the planet Krypton where a council has been gathered to discuss plans to manage the natural disasters afflicting their world.

    Jor-El, their best scientist, lays out a rather apocalyptic scenario and a far-fetched escape plan, but the other council members literally laugh him out of the meeting. What follows is the well-trod tale of baby Kal-El being placed into the test rocket and sent to Earth as Krypton is destroyed in delightfully low-tech effects fashion.

    Adventures of Superman gives us a variation on Superman's adopted parents as Sarah and Eben Kent come across the crashed rocket and raise the baby inside it as their own. The show even takes time to check in on a year-old Clark who's worried about why he's so different from all the other kids.

    Don't worry though, a year-old Clark soon makes his way to Metropolis--after Pa Kent dies of a heart attack--and soon earns his position on the Daily Planet staff when he shows that he has a connection with the mysterious and recently arrived hero, Superman.

    There's a cute little back and forth between Clark and Lois in which Clark almost literally winks at the camera; he might as well say, "I'm totally Superman. We waited for Lois Lane to figure it out. For a smart woman, she seemed oblivious to the odd coincidence that Clark vanished whenever Superman appeared. Phyllis Coates left the show. She had always wanted to be a comedienne and did try in a couple of other series, all of which were short-lived.

    She was ably replaced by Noel Neill. Superman the character continued on with Christopher Reeve in the feature films role. This piece of casting would present a particularly heart wrenching contrast after Mr. Passings Regrettably, inGeorge Reeves was found in his home, dead from a handgun shot.

    His death was ruled an apparent suicide caused by his depression over being unable to find suitable work because he had been typecast as Superman.

    However, the circumstances were conflicting, and many believe, to this day, that he was murdered.


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