Daredevil stunt pilot Smilin’ Jack Martin takes on the air war in China during the darkest days of WWII.
Adventures of Smilin’ Jack
Ep. 02: The Rising Sun Strikes
Escaping from their burning plane in the first chapter, Jack and girlfriend Janet discover to their horror that Jack’s parachute refuses to open. Just as he is about to slam into earth, Jack finally manages to pull the string and both land safely. Aided by local farmers, the two are shown the way to the city of Mandon, where Janet’s brother, Tommy, has learned of a secret passage from China to India. Axis agent Fraulein Von Teufel has ordered one of her henchmen, Yoshudo, to track Jack, who is in the employ of Chinese general Kai Ling. Having arrived before our heroes, Yoshudo is about to persuade Mandon leader Mah Ling to draw a map to the secret passage when Jack and Janet arrive on the scene. All are arrested, but Jack manages to escape and sabotage the Japanese airplane. Discovered by the enemy, Jack, Janet, and Tommy seek sanctuary with Mandon high priest Lo San, but are followed by Yoshudo, who shoots Jack at point-blank range.
Set just before the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor, Jack Martin helps the Chinese obtain the Mandon Secret, a secret route from China to India, lying in an isolated Chinese sector, which would aid the Chinese in the war effort or cause disaster if fallen into the hands of the Black Samurai, a Japanese espionage organization in partnership with the Nazis, and its leader the elusive Fraulein Von Teufel, who assumes the guise of Trudy, a press correspondent and friend of Jack. For thirteen chapters, Jack goes in and out of danger in order to assist the allied war effort. The serial’s main drawback is that it didn’t follow the comic strip (with a Jack Holt looking Jack, a Peter Lorre-ish villain called The Head, and aerial escapades) and its characters, which suggests that the character was tied in to the serial, just so it could be used. Its a good serial, but could have been better.
Cast and Crew:
* Tom Brown/’Smilin’ Jack’ Martin
* Rose Hobart/Gertrude Muller
* Edgar Barrier/Tommy Thompson
Director: Lewis D. Collins, Ray Taylor
Producer: Ford Beebe
Production Company: Universal Pictures
Audio/Visual: sound, black & white
Date Release: 1943
Additional details in: IMDB
Video streaming: courtesy of www.finemoviesonline.com
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Filed Under: Adventures of Smilin Jack