The Blackhawk movie serial, chapter synopsis

Thanks to David Chapman for providing this additional information about the Blackhawk serial.


Blackhawk (Kirk Alyn) and Chuck (John Crawford) over hear Stanislaus (Rick Vallin) refuse the plea of sabotage chief Laska (Carol Forman) that he return to his native country. Laska substitutes a double for Stan; Boris(Rick Vallin), the impersonator, is discovered overpowering Hendrickson (Frank Levy) but Chop (Weaver Levy) fails to prevent the saboteur from mining the airfield. Blackhawk lands. There is a terrific explosion from the airfield!


The mines were exploded prematurely, allowing Blackhawk to escape destruction. Boris flees with Chop as hostage, trailed by Blackhawk and Andre (Larry Stewart). Fruitless investigaton of the getaway car involves them in a near-death explosion. Following the trail they rescue Chop who has learned of a sabotage plot. The Blackhawk reach the plant where Boris has already started a fire. Caught off guard, Blackhawk is knocked out. Blazing debris topples onto the unconscious airman!


Blackhawk escapes death by rolling into a packing case. A guard shoots Boris. Mistaken for Boris, Stan goes with Laska and her men. Laska becomes suspicious when she catches Stan at the radio, but Stan tricks her and the gang with a phony message, sending them to Palm Valley. Blackhawk races to Palm Valley to trap the saboteurs. Stan's deception is discovered and he is tied to a post in the path of an oncoming plane which is on the field.


Blackhawk grabs the rudder, swerves the plane and saves Stan. The Blackhawks capture some of the subversives. A message sends Blackhawk to Dr. Rolph (William Fawcett). Threats have been made against the scientist who is perfecting a deadly electronic ray. Rolph is abducted by Laska's men with Blackhawk in pursuit. Blackhawk's car is pushed, by another auto driven by Laska' henchman, in front of a speeding locomotive!


Blackhawk manages to start car and drive off tracks. Blackhawk secures Defense Council permission to move Rolph's invention. It is stolen. Blackhawks learn the location of the machine and the captured Rolph. Attempting to blast his way to freedom, Rolph turns on his ray just as Blackhawk bursts into the Laska stronghold. The electrical blast smashes him to the floor in a sudden burst of sparks!


Just before the blast, Blackhawk tosses the ray's target disc into a basket, escaping destruction. In the confusion, the saboteurs flee with Rolph who manages to signal for help. While State Police dragnet the area for the missing scientist, Blackhawk and Chuck seek clues to the saboteurs by plane. Laska fires the electronic ray at the plane which catches fire. Chuck parachutes from the plane, but Blackhawk's chute fouls and he plummets down!

Chapter 7: MYSTERY FUEL!

Chuck cleverly manages to catch Blackhawk on his chute. Uncovering the saboteur hideout, the Blackhawks rescue Rolph. A secret Defense Council message, telling Blackhawk of a meeting in an oil field, is stolen by the subversives. Regaining the message, the Blackhawks speed to the field, finding two suspicious men who have planted a bomb. Blackhawk falls in the fight on a derrick platform. The bomb explodes, toppling a flaming rig over freedom's fearless champion!


Using his belt, Blackhawk escapes down a guide wire. Defense Council member William Case (Michael Fox), secretly allied with the subversives, drives off with the new ELEMENT X, ostensibly to a safer place. Blackhawk and Chuck trail him, but are smashed-up by gang-member and Case is robbed. Blackhawk and Chuck take off to test ELEMENT X as a fuel. The saboteurs send a robot disc (same flying saucer used in Superman serial) against the plane; it explodes in a deadly burst of flame.


Diving, Blackhawk's plane is undamaged. Below, the Blackhawks battle the saboteours controlling th robot disc. Blackhawk lands and gelps to scatter the gang. Dyke (Pierce Lyden) a stowaway thug, escapes with ELEMENT X, and then makes a deal with Blackhawk.Dyke is shot down by the saboteurs. Blackhawn and Chuck trace ELEMENT X to a cold storage plant, where the killers knock them out. Chuck and Blackhawk fall into poisonous ammonia fumes!


Blackhawk revives in time and recues Chuck. The two chase and capture the saboteurs who have hidden the cylinder containing ELEMENT X. A Blackhawk planespots other members of the gang retrieving it, but again the saboteurs manage a getaway. Blackhawk and his men follow to a helium gas plant. In the ensuing struggle, Blackhawk and his opponent slip off a high platform, crashing into the machines below!

Chapter 11: FORCED DOWN

Blackhawk falls safely into a paper-filled trailer. Felling the subversive, Chuck and Blackhawk again take up the chase in a car. They learn that Laska has been ordered by the Mysterious Leader to fly ELEMENT X to the town of Valdez, below the border. Pursuing, Blackhawk engages the Commandante of Police to help in the hunt. Concealed in a hay wagon, the Blackhawks close in on suspect Senor Borego. Laska's men attack. The wagon is set afire and topples in a flaming mass of destruction!

Chapter 12: DRUMS OF DOOM

Leaping from the wagon, Blackhawk and Chuck jump the saboteurs. They capture one and head for the Borego ranch. Yaqui Indians ambush and overpower the Blackhawks. They are confronted by Senor Borego who actually is the disguised Case. The real Borego returns and routs the Indians. While following a member of Laska's gang, Blackhawk is knocked out in the path of heavy oil drums, hurtling down upon him!


Blackhawk avoids sdisaster by rolling away in time. Meanwhile Chuck has followed another saboteur, but also is attacked. Blackhawk comes to his aid, and both encounter Case, who agrees to lead them to ELEMENT X. A gang ruse is foiled by the Blackhawks who retrieve and flee by plane with the precious element, taking Case along. However, an explosive has been planted int he cylinder. The plane blows up!


Before the cylinder explodes, Case shouts a warning and they all bail out. Landing safely, Blackhawk and Chuck find Case dead, but his wrist radio is flashing a message from Laska. The Blackhawks arrange a meeting with her and a trap is set. However, Laska and her gang elude capture and there is a race for the border. The Blackhawks find Laska's deserted car. It blows up as Stan opens the door. (see chapter 2)


Blackhawk shout a warning. They all drop to the ground, avoiding the impact. Blackhawk cars continue the search but Laska eludes them. Police aid is enlisted in finding her, and she finally is trapped in the secret office of the Mysterous Leader. She denounces him for his efforts to destroy her as the Blackhawks enter. Laska treacherously murders the Leader, a double for Defense Council member Case, but is captured by Blackhawk. The last of the sabotage gang has been brought to justice by BLACKHAWK.
BLACKHAWK - Columbia Serial 1952

Written by George H. Plympton, Royal K. Cole, Sherman L. Lowe

Directed by Spencer Bennet, Fred F. Sears

Assistant Director - Charles S. Gould

Director of Photography - William Whitley

Art Director - Paul Palmentola

Film Editor - Earl Turner

Set Decorator - Sidney Clifford

Special Effects - Jack Erickson

Set Continuity - Moree Herring

Musical Director - Mischa Bakaleinikoff

Production Manager - Herbert Leonard

Sound Engineer - Josh Westmoreland

Produced by Sam Katzman


ALAN G. BARBOUR author; The Serials of Columbia -1967; Day of Thrills and Adventure - 1970; Cliffhanger: A pictorial history of the motion picture serial - 1977; Serial Quarterly # 4 - 1966

KEN WEISS and ED GOODGOLD authors; To be Continued - 1972

JIM HARMON author; The Great Movie Serials - 1972

KIRK ALYN author, actor; A Job for Superman - 1971 autobiography

JAMES VAN HISE; Serial Adventures present Blackhawk -1989

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