Siddhesh Joshi (Editor)

The Fighting Devil Dogs

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit
7.2/101 Votes Alchetron
1 Ratings
Rate This

Rate This

Screenplay  Ronald Davidson
Country  United States
7/10 IMDb

Genre  Adventure
Production  Republic Pictures
Language  English
The Fighting Devil Dogs movie poster
Director  William Witney John English
Writer  Franklin Adreon, Ronald Davidson, Barry Shipman, Sol Shor
Release date  May 28, 1938 (1938-05-28) (Serial) January 29, 1943 (1943-01-29) (feature) 1950 (1950) (TV) 1966 (1966) (TV movie)
Directors  William Witney, John English
Cast  Lee Powell (Lieutenant Tom Grayson), Bruce Bennett (Lieutenant Frank Corby), Eleanor Stewart (Janet Warfield), Montagu Love (General White), Hugh Sothern (Ben Warfield), Sam Flint (Colonel Grayson)
Similar movies  The Green Archer, Hitman: Agent 47, Watchmen, Zorro Rides Again, Zorro's Fighting Legion, Mysterious Doctor Satan

The Fighting Devil Dogs (1938) is a 12-chapter Republic movie serial starring Lee Powell and Herman Brix, the latter better known by his later stage name, Bruce Bennett. It was directed by William Witney and John English. While not often considered one of the best serials ever made, as it contains a lot of stock footage and two recap chapters, it is famous for its main villain, The Lightning—the very first costumed supervillain. There is some speculation that George Lucas used The Lightning as a template for Darth Vader.


The Fighting Devil Dogs star wars Did George Lucas base Darth Vader on Lightning from The

The fighting devil dogs serial trailer 1938


The Fighting Devil Dogs The Lightning 12inch Custom Figure Fighting Devil Dogs 1938 YouTube

In Singapore, two Marine Lieutenants, Tom Grayson and Frank Corby, uncover the threat of a masked terrorist called The Lightning, who uses an arsenal of powerful lightning-based weaponry in his bid for world conquest. However, the battle becomes personal when The Lightning annihilates the officers' unit and later kills Lt. Grayson's father as he was helping the investigation of the weapon. Now, the marines have dedicated themselves to stopping The Lightning and bringing him to justice...


The Fighting Devil Dogs The Fighting Devil Dogs Movie Posters From Movie Poster Shop
  • Lee Powell as Lt Tom Grayson
  • Herman Brix as Lt Frank Corby
  • Eleanor Stewart as Janet Warfield
  • Montagu Love as General White
  • Hugh Sothern as Ben Warfield/the Lightning
  • Sam Flint as Col Grayson
  • Perry Ivins as Crenshaw
  • Forrest Taylor as Benson
  • John Picorri as Prof Gould
  • Production

    The Fighting Devil Dogs Homages Ripoffs and Coincidences the fighting devil dogs

    The Fighting Devil Dogs was budgeted at $94,656 although the final negative cost was $92,569 (a $2,087, or 2.2%, under spend) making it one of only three pre-war Republic serials to be produced under budget. It was the cheapest Republic serial of 1938 and the second cheapest of all Republic serials. It has two recap chapters rather than the usual one (or sometimes none), in which the entire plot of the serial so far is repeated, and makes extensive use of stock footage. The cheapest Republic serial was The Vigilantes Are Coming (1936) at $87,655, while the next cheapest after The Fighting Devil Dogs is Undersea Kingdom (also 1936) at $99,222.

    The Fighting Devil Dogs THE FIGHTING SEA DOGS starring Lee Powell

    It was filmed between 10 March and 29 March 1938. The serial's production number was 793.

    The Fighting Devil Dogs Fighting Devil Dogs Chapter 01 of 12 Part 1 The Lightning

    One of the directors, William Witney, believed this to be one of the worst of the serials he ever made.

    The Lightning's Flying wing was taken from the earlier Dick Tracy serial. Aviation was one of the most popular serial genres of the early 1930s, along with Westerns and Jungle serials. Aviation films were even expected to displace Westerns as the most popular genre but science fiction took over instead. Writer Raymond William Stedman claims that the science fiction Flying Wing in this serial was the beginning of the process that killed interest in ordinary aviation.


    The Fighting Devil Dogs' official release date is May 28, 1938, although this is actually the date the sixth chapter was made available to film exchanges.

    A 69-minute feature film version, created by editing portions of the serial footage together, was released on January 29, 1943.


    In the early 1950s, The Fighting Devil Dogs was one of fourteen Republic serials edited to six 26½-minute episodes for TV syndication. Subsequently, it became one of twenty-six Republic serials edited into a TV-movie in 1966, each of which features ran 100 minutes. The title of this version was Torpedo of Doom.

    Critical reception

    The Fighting Devil Dogs is, in Cline's opinion, one of the best mystery serials ever released, with a "colourful" mystery villain, "stirring" musical score and "magnificent" editing. He also notes that it is "apparently one of the least costly" serials ever released, with two recap chapters and stock footage taken from newsreels and earlier serial releases. He states that it should be included in "any list of the ten best sound serials of all."

    Chapter titles

    1. The Lightning Strikes (29 min 28s)
    2. The Mill of Disaster (15 min 56s)
    3. The Silenced Witness (15 min 50s)
    4. Cargo of Mystery (15 min 47s)
    5. Undersea Bandits (16 min 17s)
    6. The Torpedo of Doom (16 min 24s)
    7. The Phantom Killer (14 min 47s) - Recap chapter
    8. Tides of Trickery (14 min 34s)
    9. Attack from the Skies (15 min 07s)
    10. In the Camp of the Enemy (14 min 29s)
    11. The Baited Trap (17 min 24s) - Recap chapter
    12. Killer at Bay (17 min 39s)



    The Fighting Devil Dogs Wikipedia
    The Fighting Devil Dogs IMDb The Fighting Devil Dogs

    Similar Topics
    Hitman: Agent 47
    Mysterious Doctor Satan