Brenda Starr, Reporter (1945, Wallace Fox), Chapter 7: Hideout of Terror

There’s a hideout in Hideout of Terror, but there’s no actual terror in that hideout.

Most of the chapter is kidnapped Joan Woodbury being traded between kidnappers. First it’s Jack Ingram, then he gets nabbed by Wheeler Oakman. Ingram gets most of the chapter’s action–he’s got to leave Woodbury in the Hideout to get orders from boss George Meeker–followed by doofuses Syd Saylor and Joe Devlin.

Though Saylor proves a lot smarter than Devlin, which isn’t a surprise. They’re trying to find Woodbury, but only know her car is missing. Eventually main copper Kane Richmond gets involved but he’s no more effective than anyone else. The purpose of Hideout is to stall long enough for Woodbury to get to her mark for the cliffhanger.

Eventually there a shootouts and fisticuffs and chase scenes and an abandoned mine (where Woodbury needs to get). But Woodbury gets almost no lines in the chapter and, even when she’s in the action being pursued, the chapter follows the pursuers.

Makes one forget why the serial’s called Brenda Starr, given how little Woodbury actually gets to do. But if it weren’t called Brenda Starr, it’d just be Bland Columbia Serial, so maybe not.

CREDITS

Directed by Wallace Fox; screenplay by Ande Lamb and George H. Plympton, based on the comic strip by Dale Messick; director of photography, Ira H. Morgan; edited by Charles Henkel Jr.; music by Edward J. Kay; produced by Sam Katzman; released by Columbia Pictures.

Starring Joan Woodbury (Brenda Starr), Kane Richmond (Lt. Larry Farrell), Syd Saylor (Chuck Allen), George Meeker (Frank Smith), Wheeler Oakman (Heller), Cay Forester (Vera Harvey), Marion Burns (Zelda), Lottie Harrison (Abretha), Ernie Adams (Charlie), Jack Ingram (Kruger), Anthony Warde (Muller), John Merton (Joe Schultz), William ‘Billy’ Benedict (Pesky), and Joe Devlin (Sgt. Tim Brown).


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