Wednesday, April 18, 2012

(The) Adventures of Superman

I'm a child of the 50s and 60s. That gives me certain rights: Cheap entrees at Denny's and to decree that the best Superman is and always will be George Reeves.

Care to disagree? Care to step outside? That's what I thought.

Come in and let's have a look at REAL television excellence.

Adventures of Superman began filming in 1951. The show's run went from roughly September, 1952 to April, 1958. The first two seasons were filmed in black and white with the remaining four seasons filmed in color. The show was never shown in color until syndicated reruns in 1965.

When this came on the TV screen, I was glued to it. I'll take the trash out later!

Here is the cast of regulars.

Robert Shane as Inspector Henderson, Metropolis Police Department. Friend of Clark Kent. Clark calls him Bill so I suppose it's Inspector William Henderson. All around good guy for a flatfoot.

Robert Shane as Inspector Henderson

John Hamilton as Perry White, Editor of The Daily Planet, Metropolis' newspaper. Boss of Clark Kent, Lois Lane, and Jimmy Olson. All around huffing and puffing blowhard with a heart of gold. When exasperated (which is frequently) he's fond of exclaiming - Great Caesar's Ghost!

John Hamilton as Perry White

Jack Larson as Jimmy Olson. Pal of Clark Kent, Superman, and Lois Lane. Cub Reporter/photographer for The Daily Planet. Calls Perry White "Chief" which exasperates White into exclaiming "Don't call me chief"! All around dork and, with Lois Lane, major league trouble getter inner.

(Did you get that? Getter Inner - noun - a person who "gets in" trouble)

Jack Larson as Jimmy Olson

Phyllis Coates as Lois Lane (first season only). Played the part as a hard nose. The first season was very film noir. And she played it this way to the hilt. I wasn't crazy about her at all.

Phyllis Coates as Lois Lane

Noel Neil as (the real) Lois Lane. Referred to as "that nosey, dame reporter from The Planet" by Metropolis' underworld element. Has a major crunch on Superman. Thinks Clark Kent is wussyness personified. Along with Jimmy Olson, a seriously major league trouble getter inner. All in all a competent reporter.

Noel Neil with a slice of cheesecake. Oops! Wrong picture. Ignore this. Look the other way!

Noel Neil as Lois Lane
 George Reeves as Clark Kent. Mild mannered reported for a great metropolitan newspaper. Competant reporter, typing speed like nobody's business, always seems to be at the right place at the right time and gets there ahead of everyone else (Gee Mr. Kent, how'd you get here so fast? I flew, Jimmy. <wink>) Always wears the same gray double breasted suit in every single episode. Drives a kick ass 1953 Nash Healey.

1953 Nash Healey driven by Clark Kent

Fedora sporting, tortoise shell rimmed glasses wearing, unassuming citizen of metropolis who also happens to be (prepare yourself for this) the alter ego of Superman.

George Reeves as Clark Kent

Superman. Strange visitor from another planet who came to earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men. Superman, who can change the course of mighty rivers, bend steel in his bare hands, and who, disguised as Clark Kent, fights a never ending battle for truth, justice and the American way.

George Reeves as Superman

George didn't have a huge career beyond Superman. He was Stuart Tarleton (one of the tarleton twins) in Gone With The Wind, in 1939.

George Reeves (left) as Stuart Tarleton
But he is cemented into history as Superman. The Superman if you ask me. Here are a few other pix. Enjoy.

Roger, Metropolis control. You are cleared for take off, Superman.

'bout time for a new outfit, Supe!

The rather large diamond Clark is holding he made using a chunk of coal and his super strength.

Flexible pipe. Check. Cardboard boxes. Check. Rubber gloves. Check.

Kind of looks like Mister Greenjeans. That's baby Clark in the blanket.

I love this guy. He was "every crook".

Man,what would you give for that cabinet of mid 50s goodies?

(The) Adventures of Superman is available on DVD. All six seasons. I recommend it. You'll laugh, you'll cry. It'll become a part of you. It's cool. It's cheesy. It's the ultimate 50s superhero show.

We'll be right back with . . . more stuff.


  1. That was super Dave! Get it, Super Dave? ok I guess not.

  2. I agree. George Reeves will always be Superman to me.