The Mystery Squadron


The Mystery Squadron
Mascot 1933 / 12 Chapters
Directed by Colbert Clark and David Howard

Starring Bob Steele as aviator Fred Cromwell
Guinn "Big Boy" Williams as Bill "Jelly Bean" Cook
Jack Mulhall as Hank Davis Lucile Browne as Dorothy Gray
J. Carroll Naish as Collins Bob Kortman as Bracken
Lafe McKee as Stephen Gray Edward Hearn as the Sheriff

Near San Juan, New Mexico, the mysterious Black Ace and his squadron of phantom flame-throwing planes tries to sabotage Stephen Gray's dam project.

Gray's assistant Hank Davis hires Fred Cromwell (Western star Bob Steele) and Bill "Jelly Bean" Cook (Guinn "Big Boy" Williams), two of the greatest fliers in the world, to track down the Mystery Squadron, infiltrate their mountain hideout and discover the true identity of the Black Ace before it's too late.

Mystery villain "The Black Ace"

A great deal of care has been put into restoring this serial for DVD presentation. The original film print is not complete and is missing footage in chapter openings and end titles.

The opening title has been painstakingly restored using footage from multiple chapters and is now complete but for the line "Nat Levine Presents" which was originally at the top of the screen. This was not replaced in this presentation because it was removed from most original chapters and could not be replaced without adding an undesirably distracting bouncing element to every opening title sequence.

All chapter ending titles, mostly missing in the original, have been restored using the same display font Mascot used originally.

The musical fanfares which accompanied chapter endings in the original but which do not exist in most prints or video versions have also been restored.

Reel change markers have been removed throughout.

A few reels of the original print (Chapter 1 reel 1, Chapter 2 reel 1, Chapter 4 reel 2, and Chapter 5 reel 1) were either soft in focus or grainy. These reels have been video-noise reduced to remove grain and then sharpened about 15%, which makes them look better on this DVD than they did in the original print. Some graininess is still evident in some sections of what remains but it is minor.

Chapter summaries have been slightly letterboxed and contrast-adjusted for readability.

White-noise hiss which was present in the audio of the entire serial has been completely removed, and the sound has been normalized to about 85% (that means it is nice and strong). There is very little background audio noise at all remaining in the DVD. Most chapters sound like they would have in the original theatrical presentation, or better, because all that hiss is GONE.

We guarantee you this is the sharpest version of this serial with the best sound available, possibly the best-looking version that will ever exist.

No music or other audio effects have been added to this presentation.

The entire serial is presented in a silvery cool black and white. (Frame above is from the actual finished DVD showing the black and white tone used in the final presentation)

2-DVD Set
English - 1:33:1 - Full Screen - Black and White - 1933 - 12 Chapters - Digitally remastered - Noise reduced - Chapter and scene selections - Suitable for all audiences

Released February 2008

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