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REX BENNETT

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Full Name: Rex Bennett
Nationality: American
Organization: American Intelligence
Occupation Agent

Creator: Unknown
Time Span: 1943 - 1943

ABOUT THE SERIES

       Rex Bennett is an agent with the American government.
       Looking at the title of the first recorded adventure of Bennett, the use of the term 'G-Men' would make one believe he is a member of the FBI since that is the moniker they are most known by. However, there is nothing else to point that way. When we first meet him, he has his office in a federal building in Los Angeles; on his door is the title "Rex Bennett, Special Investigator". There is no indication that it is part of the Bureau's L.A. offices. Add to that the fact that his second adventure takes him far from California to the heart of Africa and it looks like he is working for something else inside the U.S. government.
       Bennett is likely in his mid-30's on that first adventure. He is a ruggedly built man with a solid firm looking face, not exactly handsome per se but by no means unattractive, especially considering his tall physique and demeanor. He is quick to smile and inclined to be amiable by nature but his civility can disappear instantly should people decide to be unpleasant. As he demonstrates no hesitation to use his fists in a scuffle or to pull his revolver when fired on, Bennett can prove he is no easy mark.
       The facts that he has his own office, with his name on the door, and a secretary to announce visitors, shows he has been around awhile and risen more than a couple of rungs in the career ladder. Adding to that is the fact that he is on a first name basis with agents of foreign governments. While we do not learn anything about his previous experiences, there is no doubt that he not only had a good number of them but that they also ended in his favor.

MOVIES

Number of Movies:2
First Appearance:1943
Last Appearance:1943

1 G-Men vs. the Black Dragon G-Men vs. the Black Dragon
Directors: Spencer Gordon Bennet, William Witney
Writers: Ronald Davidson, William Lively, Joseph O'Donnell, Joseph F. Poland
Actors: Rod Cameron as Rex Bennett, Roland Got as Chang Sing, Constance Worth as Vivian Marsh, Nino Pipitone as Oyama Haruchi
Released: 1943

The Japanese secret organization known as the Black Dragon Society is smuggling enemy agents into the States, disguised as mummies. Rex Bennett is asked to help stop them, joining with agents from China and England.

This four-hour movie was released as a 15-part serial. The names and lengths of each section are:
- The Yellow Peril (25min 26s)
- Japanese Inquisition (15min 34s)
- Arsenal of Doom (15min 32s)
- Deadly Sorcery (15min 34s)
- Celestial Murder (15min 36s)
- Death and Destruction (15min 35s)
- The Iron Monster (15min 35s)
- Beast of Tokyo (15min 39s)
- Watery Grave (15min 31s)
- The Dragon Strikes (15min 34s)
- Suicide Mission (15min 35s)
- Dead on Arrival (15min 31s)
- Condemned Cargo (15min 34s)
- Flaming Coffin (15min 34s)
- Democracy in Action (15min 40s)

It was later re-edited to become a 100-minute movie for television release.

2 Secret Service in Darkest Africa Secret Service in Darkest Africa
Also known as Manhunt in the African Jungle, The Baron's African War
Director: Spencer Gordon Bennet
Writers: Royal K. Cole, Ronald Davidson, Basil Dickey, Jesse Duffy, Joseph O'Donnell, Joseph F. Poland
Actors: Rod Cameron as Rex Bennett, Joan Marsh as Janet Blake, Duncan Renaldo as Pierre LaSalle, Lionel Royce as Baron von Rommler, Kurt Kreuger as Ernst Muller
Released: 1943

Aided again by agents from the other Allied nations, Rex Bennett is sent to Africa to stop German Baron von Rommler. That man has kidnapped Sultan Abou Ben Ali and is taking his place in disguise to unite the continent against the Allies.

This four-hour movie was released as a 15-part serial. The names and lengths of each section are:
- North African Intrigue (25min 26s)
- The Charred Witness (15min 35s)
- Double Death (15min 33s)
- The Open Grave (15min 34s)
- Cloaked in Flame (15min 36s)
- Dial of Doom (15min 36s)
- Murder Dungeon (15min 35s)
- Funeral Arrangements Completed (15min 35s)
- Invisible Menace (15min 35s)
- Racing Peril (15min 34s)
- Lightning Terror (15min 34s)
- Ceremonial Execution (15min 33s)
- Fatal Leap (15min 33s)
- Victim of Villainy (15min 33s)
- Nazi Treachery Unmasked (15min 33s)

It was later re-edited to become a 100-minute movie for television release.

COLLECTIBLES

Number of Collectibles:1
First Appearance:1943
Last Appearance:1943

1 The Yellow Peril LC Set The Yellow Peril LC Set
Lobby Cards
Republic Pictures
Copyright: 1943

A series of 8 color cards that features a mini poster and 7 still photo scenes for the 1st Chapter of the movie serial G-Men vs. the Black Dragon. These were sent to theaters in the U.S. to put in their lobbies who played it.

MY COMMENTS

       I have had a fondness for film serials for decades. I love the idea of cliffhangers, though the resolution to the horrible situation the hero finds him/herself in is usually quickly resolved at the start of the next episode.
       These two 15-part serial adventures definitely pack a ton of action inside them. The characters are fun and interesting. Rex Bennett is also an interesting fellow who allows himself to get a bit riled here and there, natural since people are always trying to kill him, but he never falls into the ruffled stage. He can take care of himself and shows it. So do the females he will work with, which is good.

GRADE

My Grade: B

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