Jor-El (Nelson Leigh), a scientist on the planet Krypton rockets his infant son to Earth just before Krypton explodes. The boy is found on Earth by a farmer, Eben Kent (Ed Cassidy) and his wife, Martha (Virginia Carroll) and they name him Clark Kent (Kirk Alyn). When Clark grows up, his foster father asks him to use his amazing super powers only for good. The mild-mannered Clark gets a job on the Daily Planet as a reporter, and soon, as his alter-ego Superman (Kirk Alyn'), and soon tangles with The Spider Lady (Carol Forman), who considers herself Queen of the Underworld. Meanwhile, a fragment from the planet Krypton reaches earth and falls in her possession. It is the only substance that can render Superman helpless. Written by
Les Adams <email@example.com>
Due to the crudity of special effects at the time (and the incredibly high cost of portraying it convincingly) all images of Superman in flight were animated in a manner similar to the way Superman flew in the Fleischer studios cartoons of the early 1940s. Sometimes animated images were even superimposed onto live action shots. See more »
In chapter 9, when the villains are preparing to blow up the reducer ray, the meter indicates "millimeters" not, at least, milliamps. See more »
What do you want?
[as Clark Kent]
Uh... a job.
Any special kind? Or would mine do?
Well, I would like to be a reporter. I haven't had any experience in writing, but... uh...
That should help.
Well, I have other qualifications that might be valuable.
See more »
An excellent serial...and true to the source material of the times
This is one good serial! There is a lot of action and decent SFX and fairly good (if now stereotypical) characterization.
Kirk Alyn is great as Superman and Clark Kent...a performance that really wasn't surpassed in any media until Christopher Reeve's triumph in 1978. Lois and Jimmy are suitably doltish...though even Lois was a bit more intelligent in the comics than in this serial.
I've been told that the producers had some remorse at the cheapness of the effects (i.e., using animation for Superman flying), but I really don't think it comes off as shoddy...in fact I think it comes off fairly well, or at least better than using a derivative of Republic's effects for making Captain Marvel fly seven years earlier.
Superman is supposedly the most popular chapterplay in history. I don't know about that, but it is very enjoyable and an excellent example of the genre of the movie serial.
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