Tuesday, March 14, 2017

The Disappearance of Flight 412

The Disappearance of Flight 412, featuring Glen Ford as Colonel Pete Moore and David Soul as Captain Roy Bishop. This is a 1974 TV Movie that I must have missed back in the day, and I wonder how widely it was distributed. At Whitney AFB, a Radar Test Group, their aircraft have been experiencing electrical problems lately, and a plane crew of four men, piloted by Captain Roy Bishop, are sent up to test their plane when three bogies appear on their radar scope, as well as ground radar. Marine jets are sent up to investigate and disappear, then Flight 412 is ordered by Digger Control, an SID team to an abandoned military base where they are held prisoners while being “debriefed”. Colonel Moore is upset that his men have been spirited away from him and follows the plane by radar, eventually discovering where they are being held and takes his aide to retrieve the men. They are met by Colonel Troutman, in charge of the SID Team, who claims National Security, and holds them until he’s satisfied the men will not reveal what they know about the UFO incident. This was an interesting story, actually filmed on a couple AF Bases that shows the cover up of UFO incidents by the military. I’m not sure how they got this filmed, as there were lots of incidents during this time period involving UFOs over restricted areas containing both missiles and aircraft loaded with nuclear weapons. Although part documentary, the UFOs are only seen on radar, and some black and white film from old reports are presented. This is basically a character study of the men involved in the incident, and Glen Ford and David Soul are excellent, as are the rest of the cast. This was a very enjoyable movie.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Death Is My Shadow

Death Is My Shadow by Edward S. Aarons:  Pete Byrum is home after being called up for Naval maneuvers for six months. His partner in The Pelican, a club and casino they own in Oswanda, Louisiana, has been arrested for murder, and the syndicate’s man, Alden Thayer, is now running the casino. Pete wants the club back, but the syndicate now controls the town, the sheriff, and his lawyer, and the deck is stacked against him. Pete Helps his partner escape jail when he discovers the man he’s suspected of murdering is really alive. Now Pete is wanted for the man’s murder, while his partner runs away with Thayer’s wife and the syndicate’s money. This was really a good story, and had all the backstory for what would eventually be Aarons’ later Assignment spy series, featuring Sam Durell.

Monday, February 6, 2017

The Skin Swindle

Ninja Master #7: “The Skin Swindle” by Wade Barker (Unknown). Brett Hartley reads a newspaper article about pornography in Los Angeles, and the mysterious Porn King that runs the network of smut films and kiddie porn, and decides he wants to put a stop to it. He brings his pal, Jeff Archer with him from San Francisco, and he sets up a meeting with the reporter, Samantha Loring to get inside information, pretending to be a reporter from Japan. The story is long and boring, the first 75 pages is nothing but the set up, describing child pornography, and is so badly written I wonder how it was ever considered for publication. 7 to 10-year-old kids talk like children one minute and adults the next. But, then, pornography does sale, and that’s basically all this was. We do see some martial arts later on, but it was laughable, and I’m still wondering why Jeff Archer was included. He never did anything right. Maybe he was just there to show how good Brett Hartley is? This isn’t worth reading, so save your money. It should have been titled The Book Swindle.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Night of The Assassin

Secret Mission #16: “Night of The Assassin” by Don Smith. Phil Sherman, now an agent of the CIA, is sent to Albania to check on rumors that the Chinese have nuclear warheads on rockets based there. The information seems planted, and no one truly believes in the nuclear situation. But the report had hidden meanings, and in the end it isn’t nuclear warheads that are the problems, it’s an assassination that could throw the world into a nuclear war. This was another good story. The author knows world history, and the Cold War set up that he writes about. A fun story.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Death Stalk In Spain

Secret Mission #14: “Death Stalk In Spain” by Don Smith. Phil Sherman, now a private detective, with his Paris machine equipment company as a cover, is attached to the CIA. In this latest case, he’s working for a Navy captain in Intelligence. A lieutenant pilot of a new submersible has killed his partner and disappeared with the little submarine. In Spain he discovers that the lieutenant may have discovered the sunken ship with ten tons of gold the Nazis were responsible for. It’s what the lieutenant wants, and standing between him and the NAZI commander that sunk the ship is a beautiful girl who may be playing everyone for a fool, including Sherman. This was another pretty good yarn, though the author has got to run out of NAZIs soon. Lots of fun.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Lucifer's Weekend

Digger #4: “Lucifer’s Weekend” by Warren Murphy. Digger, Julian Burroughs, is sent to Belton, PA to try to talk the widow, Louis Giillette, in accepting the accidental death clause of one million dollars in her husbands death, but she refuses, saying it would make her genius husband look like an idiot. She only wants the 500 thousand dollars, and forget the accident.  He had been electrocuted while attempting to change a fuse in a breaker box, when there are no fuses in a breaker box, and he’s an electrical genius and would have known that.  She and her daughter are the only ones in town who think he was murdered. Now Digger does also, and he’s willing to investigate. The usual tomfoolery and craziness, but a fun story, nonetheless.