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O.S.S.

oss_cb_03 oss_cb_01 oss_cb_07 oss_cb_09 oss_cb_02 oss_cb_08 oss_cb_06 oss_cb_04 oss_cb_05
 
Full Name: Frank Hawthorne
Nationality: American
Organization: OSS
Occupation Agent

Creator: Paul Dudley
Time Span: 1957 - 1959

ABOUT THE SERIES

Frank Hawthorne is an agent with the O.S.S.

Obviously since that organization existed only during the Second World War, that is the time frame of this operative's activity. Hawthorne is a Major in the American Army, stationed in Great Britain but using it largely as a staging area for his numerous excursions into German-controlled lands on the Continent.

Though the name of the collection of Hawthorne adventures is that of the department for which he works, the stories themselves deal with him as the main character week after week. And it is about him that the narrator begins each mission's depiction with:

"This is an agent of the OSS, en-route to a mission behind enemy lines. One of the nameless, faceless army, who fought the lonely war - the silent war. To this day, stories untold of heroes unknown. This is a mission from the annals of the Office of Strategic Services -The OSS."

We do not learn very much about Hawthorne's life before the War. He is in his late 30s when we first meet him and is already firmly established inside the O.S.S. but whether he was an officer first, pulled into the organization when needed or a civilian given a commission when he joined the group is not known - and it really does not matter.

What we do know is that his dedication to fighting the enemy is matched by his desires to help the Resistance groups he meets to do the same.

Working side-by-side with Hawthorne is the intrepid, stalwart Sgt. O'Brien. Largely unsung for his bravery, O'Brien is routinely seen leaping out of the same airplane or landing on the beach in the same raft as Hawthorne.

TELEVISION


Number of Episodes:26
First Appearance:1957
Last Appearance:1958
Network:ITV,ABC

REGULAR CAST
Ron RandellFrank Hawthorne [ 1 ]
Lionel MurtonThe Chief [ 1 ]
Robert GallicoO'Brien [ 1 ]
1 Operation Fracture
Episode S1-01, first aired 09/26/1957
Director: Peter Maxwell
Writer: Paul Dudley

On an airplane in trouble, Frank Hawthorn must bail out in a parachute. He awakens in a hospital and must maintain his cover identity while trying to learn exactly where he was.

2 Operation Tulip
Episode S1-02, first aired 10/03/1957
Director: Peter Maxwell
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank Hawthorne travels to the Netherlands where he must work with the Dutch underground to destroy a German submarine visiting there. The German find using innocent civilians as hostages is a useful tactic.

3 Operation Powder Puff
Episode S1-03, first aired 10/10/1957
Director: Robert Siodmak
Writer: Paul Dudley

A bridge important to the German defenses needs to be destroyed and Frank steps up. It means going behind enemy line and Hawthorn needs to use every trick and catch ever break to succeed.

4 Operation Death Trap
Episode S1-04, first aired 10/17/1957
Director: Lawrence Huntington
Writer: Paul Dudley

Josette, an attractive French partisan, has been captured by the Germans. Frank must infiltrate where Josette is held and if he's unable to rescue her, he must kill her before she reveals important info under torture.

5 Operation Orange Blossom
Episode S1-05, first aired 10/24/1957
Director: Lawrence Huntington
Writer: Paul Dudley

For the next mission, Frank Hawthorne must join with fellow agent Virginia to travel as newlyweds as they travel to Casablanca.

6 Operation Pay Day
Episode S1-06, first aired 10/31/1957
Director: Pennington Richards
Writer: Paul Dudley

A friend and colleague in the OSS was killed on a mission to Italy after being tortured. Now it falls to Frank Hawthorn to take on and complete his mission which is to act at paymaster to the Resistance forces fighting the Fascists.

7 Operation Foulball
Episode S1-07, first aired 11/07/1957
Director: Robert Siodmak
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank Hawthorn learns of two brothers working on opposite sides of the espionage war. One has information on V1 rockets is intends to turn over to the enemy. His army officer sibling intends to stop him with Frank's aid.

8 Operation Blue Eyes
Episode S1-08, first aired 11/14/1957
Director: Pennington Richards
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank Hawthorn's finds out his new job takes him to Milan, Italy where he is to work with a gorgeous agent code named Blue Eyes.

9 Operation Flint Axe
Episode S1-09, first aired 11/21/1957
Director: Jules Buck
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank Hawthorn is in Paris, ordered to track down a suspected traitor named Joe Heinz and possibly eliminate him.

10 Operation Sweet Talk
Episode S1-010, first aired 11/28/1957
Director: Pennington Richards
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank Hawthorn has an assignment to persuade a nightclub singer and dancer named Kyro Caro to become the Allies' version of the notorious Axis Sally. A couple of German agents are out to stop her by use of some bombs.

11 Operation Big House
Episode S1-011, first aired 12/05/1957
Director: Lawrence Huntington
Writer: Paul Dudley

To get at some valuable papers in a German embassy, the OSS must have the aid of the best safecracker. They want a man named Rafferty but he is being held in a prison. Frank Hawthorne's job is to not only break him out but convince him to help in the caper.

12 Operation Lovebirds
Episode S1-012, first aired 12/12/1957
Director: Lawrence Huntington
Writer: Paul Dudley

A German officer Van Kuhl proposes turning double agent in order to free his imprisoned wife. Frank's help is part of the bargain but Van Kuhl adds an extra difficult condition during the operation.

13 Operation Pigeon Hole
Episode S1-013, first aired 12/19/1957
Director: Lawrence Huntington
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank is sent to Italy to impede the Germans as the allies approach the Anzio bridge. Hawthorn gets assistance from a deaf partisan whose ability to read lips proves invaluable.

14 Operation Yo-Yo
Episode S1-014, first aired 12/26/1957
Director: Pennington Richards
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank once again goes undercover behind enemy lines in Germany on a deadly operation.

15 Operation Yodel
Episode S1-015, first aired 01/02/1958
Director: Pennington Richards
Writer: Paul Dudley

Deserters are being smuggled from to Switzerland to Germany for work in clandestine operations for the enemy. Frank goes undercover as a recruit to expose how the operation functions.

16 Operation Sardine
Episode S1-016, first aired 01/09/1958
Director: Allan Davis
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank head to Bergen, Norway where the submarine pens are located. The agency has learned the the enemy has knowledge of allied shipping and the information must be destroyed.

17 Operation Firefly
Episode S1-017, first aired 01/13/1958
Director: Pennington Richards
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank has to free an agent from Brussels

18 Operation Eel
Episode S1-018, first aired 01/20/1958
Director: Robert Siodmak
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank Hawthorn heads to North Africa where he must extract a downed pilot of dangerous conditions.

19 Operation Barbecue
Episode S1-019, first aired 01/27/1958
Director: Allan Davis
Writer: Paul Dudley

American ships carrying cargoes of magnesium have been blown up during air raids. The Intelligence Department are certain that sabotage is the cause. Frank Hawtorne is sent to Liverpool to find if there is an enemy agent at work.

20 Operation Blackbird
Episode S1-020, first aired 02/03/1958
Director: Lawrence Huntington
Writer: Paul Dudley

To collect vital information Frank goes to work in a hospital as an orderly.

21 Operation Post Office
Episode S1-021, first aired 02/10/1958
Director: Lawrence Huntington
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank accepts the difficult assignment of finding then freeing the captive wife of an important French scientist.

22 Operation Newsboy
Episode S1-022, first aired 02/17/1958
Director: Lawrence Huntington
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank must establish himself behind German lines to set up a news outlet to counter false enemy propaganda.

23 Operation Chopping Block
Episode S1-023, first aired 02/24/1958
Director: Robert Day
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank has a treacherous assignment of blowing up a factory located in Germany.

24 Operation Dagger
Episode S1-024, first aired 03/03/1958
Director: Pennington Richards
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank Hawthorne is on a mission in France when he is shot in the leg. He still escapes but must find refuge in a small country estate owned by a blind retired French General.

25 Operation Meat Ball
Episode S1-025, first aired 03/10/1958
Directors: Peter Maxwell, Philip Wrestler
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank joins with 3 Canadian Special Ops to blow up a deadly factory deep in Germany. First order of business is to subdue dogs guarding building then the man knowing the escape routes is killed. Frank must make the mission success.

26 Operation Jingle Bells
Episode S1-026, first aired 03/17/1958
Director: Allan Davis
Writer: Paul Dudley

Frank must free two imprisoned agents McGaffrey and Eilers in occupied territory. Reaching France he learns the men are hiding on a partisan farm. Getting them home requires ingenuity as the escapees are clad in their underwear.

COMIC BOOKS, GRAPHIC NOVELS, AND MANGA

Number of Stories:9
First Appearance:1958
Last Appearance:1959

1 Operation Flint Axe Operation Flint Axe
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1958

Graphic illustration of Episode #9, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. 07/1958.
Frank Hawthorn is in Paris, ordered to track down a suspected traitor named Joe Heinz and possibly eliminate him.

2 Operation Fracture Operation Fracture
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1958

Graphic illustration of Episode #1, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. 09/1958.
On an airplane in trouble, Frank Hawthorn must bail out in a parachute. He awakens in a hospital and must maintain his cover identity while trying to learn exactly where he was.
Click here to read the story.

3 Operation - Pay Day Operation - Pay Day
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1958

Graphic illustration of Episode #6, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. 10/1958.
A friend and colleague in the OSS was killed on a mission to Italy after being tortured. Now it falls to Frank Hawthorn to take on and complete his mission which is to act at paymaster to the Resistance forces fighting the Fascists.
Click here to read the story.

4 Operation Tulip Operation Tulip
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1959

Graphic illustration of Episode #2, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. 01/1959.
Frank Hawthorne travels to the Netherlands where he must work with the Dutch underground to destroy a German submarine visiting there. The German find using innocent civilians as hostages is a useful tactic.
Click here to read the story.

5 Operation Sweet Talk Operation Sweet Talk
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1959

Graphic illustration of Episode #10, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. 02/1959.
Frank Hawthorne has an assignment to persuade a nightclub singer and dancer named Kyro Caro to become the Allies' version of the notorious Axis Sally. A couple of German agents are out to stop her by use of some bombs.
Click here to read the story.

6 Operation Big House Operation Big House
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1959

Graphic illustration of Episode #11, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. 03/1959.
To get at some valuable papers in a German embassy, the OSS must have the aid of the best safecracker. They want a man named Rafferty but he is being held in a prison. Frank Hawthorne's job is to not only break him out but convince him to help in the caper.
Click here to read the story.

7 Operation Orange Blossom Operation Orange Blossom
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1959

Graphic illustration of Episode #5, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. 06/1959.
For the next mission, Frank Hawthorne must join with fellow agent Virginia to travel as newlyweds as they travel to Casablanca.

8 Operation Dagger Operation Dagger
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1959

Graphic illustration of Episode #5, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. ??/1959.
Frank Hawthorne is on a mission in France when he is shot in the leg. He still escapes but must find refuge in a small country estate owned by a blind retired French General.

9 Operation Lovebirds Operation Lovebirds
Published by C. Arthur Pearson, Ltd.
Contributors: Unknown (writer and artist)
Copyright: 1959

Graphic illustration of Episode #5, published in Pearson's T.V. Picture Stories series, poss. ??/1959.
A German officer Van Kuhl proposes turning double agent in order to free his imprisoned wife. Frank's help is part of the bargain but Van Kuhl adds an extra difficult condition during the operation.

MY COMMENTS

It is apparent by the fact that there was no second season after the initial 26 episodes were aired, this show never really hit it off with the British viewing public and did not find a home in America, either.

That is a shame because I felt, from the couple of episodes I was able to watch, the half-hour length really worked well for the series, keeping the action going without getting bogged down. And I like the grittiness of the black&white film.

It is nice that a third of the episodes were novelized (in a way) in graphic format and I liked the way they came across.

GRADE

My Grade: B

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