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Still Watching the Skies: Episode 44 “Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze”

Posted on Apr 1, 2018 by | 0 comments

Nat, Cody, and Robert have no fear, because Doc Savage is here. Once again the Still Watching the Skies crew shows their bravery, intelligence, and superior upbringing by grappling with films that lesser podcasts wouldn’t touch. That’s right, this month we’re on an adventurous undertaking with 1975’s DOC SAVAGE: THE MAN OF BRONZE.

Clark Savage Jr., better known as Doc Savage, was one of the premiere pulp characters of the 1930s having globe trotting adventures with his group of compatriots, the Fabulous Five, and defeating evil through a combination of intellectual brilliance and unbridled physical prowess. Yet it wasn’t until the more cynical time of the 1970s that he had his first big screen adventure, a time that seems ill suited to the hero as the film wavers between straight forward retro adventure and campy send up.

Starring Ron Ely, most famous for his work as Tarzan, directed by Michael Anderson, who was responsible for AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 DAYS and THE DAM BUSTERS, and produced by George Pal, all the ingredients are there for a faithful, exciting adaptation of Doc Savage. Except studio support that is and the unfortunate timing of opening in June 1975 opposite JAWS. DOC SAVAGE: THE MAN OF BRONZE is precisely the type of retro throwback that George Lucas and Steven Spielberg were able to tap into to great effect, but which eludes the makers of this film.

Still, that doesn’t mean that there’s nothing to discuss here. Doc Savage has a tremendous amount of influence including Superman and Buckaroo Banzai. We discuss the sundry influences, the pulp revival of the 1990s, and just what makes a film a science fiction film anyways.

If that’s not enough, we also read listener email including a discussion of what are the worst science fiction films that we’ve seen.

So feel free to join us on this blazing adventure. You can give us a play below or Download the episode. Also, feel free to let us know what you think by commenting below or Email Us at [email protected] as we appreciate feedback.

Next month, we go on another serial inspired adventure with 1980’s FLASH GORDON and it’s infamous sendup FLESH GORDON. We hope you’ll join us.

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Robert Reineke
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