Series notes / Movie notes / General notes
These notes were written by me after viewing numerous episodes. I am not an expert. So if you have any feedback, please let me know. firstname.lastname@example.org. I welcome your responses and corrections. I have verified the episodes as correctly as I can by viewing the 16mm film prints and getting the production information from the film leaders and viewing episodes acquired from MovieCraft, Alpha Video, film collectors, and collector's tapes. There are some facts I'm pretty sure of but won't list them as correct if I can't verify them.
52 episodes were produced, filmed in black and white on 35mm film, approximately 26 minutes each
produced by Arrow Productions, Inc
released by Independent Television Corporation (ITC)
Executive Producer Leon Fromkess
Produced by Rudolph Flothow
The Episodes are set in Africa and India, but filmed in California at Corriganville, Ray Corrigan Ranch, Simi Valley, California
Jon Hall as Ramar, research scientist Dr. Tom Reynolds
Ray Montgomery as Chemistry Professor Howard Ogden
James Fairfax as Charlie, Cockney Guide (in Africa)
Victor Millan as Zahir, Indian Guide (in India)
Nick Stewart as Willy, African Guide (in Africa)
Ludwig Stossel as Peter Van Tyne, trading post proprietor (in Africa)
M'liss McClure as Trudy Van Tyne, daughter of Peter Van Tyne
Directors: Wallace Fox, Paul Landres, Sam Newfield, and Spencer Gordon Bennet, each directing one series of 13 episodes
Assistant Director: Stanley Neufield
Writers: William Lively, Dwight Babcock, Sherman Lowe, Eric Taylor, and Barry Shipman
Cinematography: Clark Ramsey, Kenneth Peach, and William P. Whitely
Film Editing: Dwight Caldwell
Four series were produced starting 1n 1952. There were 13 episodes in each, released for syndication in October 1952, January 1953, October 1953, and January 1954. The first 26 episodes (series 1 and series 2) are considered the first season with stories taking place in Africa and then India. The second 26 episodes, taking place in Africa, are referred to as the second season. Each director was credited for one series of 13 episodes, and each is distinguished by different opening and closing credits.
The shows were released in syndication. Thus there is no "brought to you by" a specified sponsor like network shows would have. That means they were sold on the open market by Arrow Productions. Soon after the show was produced, Arrow merged with T.P.A. and later was bought out by I.T.C. When I.T.C. owned them they created six television films from the episodes. Where Epi-log Magazine got their syndicated airdate information, I don't know. I can not verify these dates other than to trust their research. I wish I knew what their source was. But, these are only airdates. If the episodes were originally aired in that order the storylines are out of sequence. If you want to watch the stories in chronological order, you need to watch them in production order. The production order is different than the order of airdates and storylines and indications on the original film leaders confirm this. For example in syndicated episode #2 White Savages, the White Goddess and her accomplices die, yet in #4 Tribal Feud the White Goddess is alive. In syndicated #7 Voice in the Sky, Ramar and Howard are in India, yet in the beginning of #11 Mark of Shaitan they are shown just arriving in India. There are numerous examples of these chronoligical inconsistencies. Thus, I have made available a chronological production list of episode titles from the ones I can confirm. If I can't confirm the episode number, I can at least confirm the series. For me, that is what's most important. For my convenience, I also prepared an alphabetical list of titles.
The credits change with each director and each series which helps to identify the chronological order in which the episodes were filmed. The styles of lettering of the titles change and the opening and closing scenes change. The music remains the same.
First series episodes open with a lion walking in the jungle. Ramar comes upon it and fires his rifle at the screen (the lion). Closing credits are shown over a jungle landscape. I believe it is the same landscape used in the opening title. These episodes take place in Africa. All of these episodes (1-13) are directed by Wallace Fox. In the first episode of the series, Evil Trek, Ramar introduces himself to the Van Tyne's and explains his reasons for being in Africa. Charlie is Ramar's guide and is announced as having been hired on in Capetown. Ramar and Howard live in a house at Cooper's Corral that was built years ago by a big game hunter. Theses are the only episodes featring the Van Tynes as these are the only episodes where they stay at the house at Cooper's Corral. And the only episodes with Charlie as guide. When they return to Africa in series three they travel and live in a tent and have a different guide. All of the thirteen episodes of this series turn up in one of the movies. Three in the White Goddess, and others in The Jungle Secrets, The Burning Barrier, and Jungle Voodoo.
The second series episodes open with a scene of a roaring tiger. The end credits are shown on top of an Indian design. All of these episodes (14-27) take place in India and are directed by Paul Landres. In the first episode of the series, Mark of Shaitan, Ramar and Howard are on a plane for Bombay, India and talk about leaving their adventures in Africa and finding more adventures in India. In this episode Ramar is introduced to Zahir, who has been assigned by the Maharaja as his guide. Ramar and Howard live in a tent and travel by Jeep, which gives them the mobility to change locations for their different adventures. In dialogue throughout the episodes they clearly indicate this. Finally, the series concludes and the Maharaja bids them farewell to return to Africa.
The third series episodes open with a scene of a river in the African jungle. The style of lettering used for the titles takes on an upward slant. Closing credits are printed over a native mask. All of these episodes (28-39) are directed by Sam Newfield and take place in Africa. In the first episode of the series, Call to Danger, Ramar arrives at a missionary's home and explains that he is glad to be back in Africa. In this series Willy is Ramar's guide and they say only that he was hired as the guide. We find out later that he is of the Kanga tribe and has been a guide before. Ramar and Howard live in a tent in the Jungle, but are not mobile as they were in their adventures in India. The Van Tyne's and the trading post are no longer in these episodes because Ramar has returned to a different part of Africa. In the first episode, Call to Danger, the monkey Babette belongs to the missionaries. But she is later a gift to Willy of the missionaries and stays with him throughout the remainder of the season.
Fourth series episodes open with a native tribe dancing in a village. Credits at the end are over an African mask, same as the third series. All of these episodes (40-52) are directed by Spencer Bennet. These episodes continue to take place in Africa and Willy remains as Ramar's guide.
Production Episode List:
This production episode list indicates chronologically how the four series of episodes were produced. It is derived mostly from the numbers on the film leaders or very reliable sources. If I don't know for sure which episode is that exact number, I simply list it with the series in which that episode belongs. For example, I know The Mask of Kreenah is from the first series, I just don't know which episode of the series it is. Asterisks indicate a very strong probability that the episode number is correct.
1st series: Directed by Wallace Fox. Africa. Charlie is guide.
Opening Title: Lion, Ramar shoots at it. Closing credits: jungle landscape
1 Evil Trek
3 Jungle Terror
4 Striped Fury
5 Blue Treasure
7 Sacred Monkey
8 Drums of the Jungle
9 Doomed Safari
10 Tribal Feud
12 Danger in Disguise
13 White Savages
Mask of Kreenah
2nd series: Directed by Paul Landres. India. Zahir is guide.
Opening Title: roaring tiger. Closing credits: Indian design
14 Mark of Shaitan
15 Devil Soul
16 Urn of Destiny
18 Crocodile God of Kaa
19 Tiger's Claw
20 Forbidden Village
23 Bride of the Idol
24 Road of No Return
25 Unknown Terror
Flower of Doom
Voice in the Sky
3rd series: Directed by Sam Newfield. They return to Africa. Willy is guide
Opening Title: jungle river. Closing credits: Over native mask
27 Call to Danger
28 Blind Peril
29 Jungle Vengeance*
30 King of the Watus
31 Idol Voo-Doo
32 Mark of the Bola
33 Curse of the Devil Doll*
34 Dark Venture
35 Lady of the Leopards
36 Drums of Doom
37 White Man's Magic
38 Voice of the Past
39 Savage Challenge
4th series: Directed by Spencer Bennet. Africa. Willy is guide
Opening Title: Tribe dancing. Closing credits: Over native mask, same as third series
40 Lost Safari
41 Golden Tablet
42 Flaming Mountain
43 Zombie Terror
46 Trail to Danger
47 Jungle Treasure
49 Thunder Over Sangoland
51 Evil Strangers
52 Dark Justice*
Queen of the Sidonis
Tree of Death
Valley of No Return
Alphabetical Order of Episodes cross referenced with chronological order:
Here, for my use, I have listed the episode titles alphabetically and referenced them with series and chronological order. My notes for series and episode indicate which of the four series the episode was produced in and which episode number of the total 52 it is. If I am not absolutely sure, I indicate with a #. For example, 2.18 Crocodile God of Kaa is confirmed to be from the second series of episodes, and number 18 of the total of 52 produced. Thus, being number 18 it was directed by Paul Landres, takes place in India and features Zahir as the guide.
title     /    series.episode
Blind Peril       3.28
The Blue Treasure    1.5
The Bride of the Idol    2.23
The Burning Barrier    1.#
Call to Danger    3.27
The Crocodile God of Kaa    2.18
Curse of the Devil Doll    3.#
Danger in Disguise    1.12
Dark Justice    4.52
Dark Venture    3.34
The Devil Soul    2.15
The Doomed Safari    1.9
Drums of Doom    3.36
Drums of the Jungle    1.8
Evil Strangers    4.51
Evil Trek    1.1
The Flaming Mountain    4.42
The Flower of Doom    2.#
The Forbidden Village    2.20
The Golden Tablet    4.41
The Hidden Treasure    2.#
Idol Voo-Doo    3.31
Jungle Terror    1.3
Jungle Treasure    4.47
Jungle Vengeance    3.#
King of the Watus    3.30
Lady of the Leopards    3.35
The Lost Safari    4.40
The Mark of Shaitan    2.14
Mark of the Bola    3.32
The Mask of Kreenah    1.#
The Mystic Pawn    2.#
Queen of the Sidonis    4.#
The Road of No Return    2.24
The Sacred Monkey    1.7
Savage Challenge    3.39
Savage Fury    4.#
Striped Fury    1.4
Thunder over Sangland    4.49
The Tiger's Claw    2.19
Trail to Danger    4.46
The Tree of Death    4.#
Tribal Feud    1.10
The Unknown Terror    2.25
Urn of Destiny    2.16
Valley of No Return    4.#
The Voice in the Sky    2.#
Voice of the Past    3.38
White Man's Magic    3.37
White Savages    1.13
Zombie Terror    4.43
Remember this is a syndicated show and the order in which the episodes were filmed is not the same as the order in which they aired. There are many inconsistencies in the order of storylines and chronological events that must have confused the viewers. But the kids who loved the show probably didn't even realize it. For example if the episode Flower of Doom was aired in March of 1954, how did it get to be part of the movie Eyes of the Jungle released in 1953? If the White Goddess dies in the episode Savage Challenges in April, 1953, how does she come back alive again next month in the episode Tribal Feud? But who cares. It was just fun!
The four movies were derived from each of the four series by editing together three episodes from each. The first two movies (1953) were created from the first, last, and one of the middle episodes of that series. For example in the movie White Goddess, Evil Trek, the first episode, starts the story, Tribal Feud, #10, continues the story, and White Savages, #13, ends the story. The last two movies (1955) appear to be created from the first three episodes of series' three and four. Makes sense as the second season episodes hadn't finished filming yet. Thus, four theatrical movies were planned ahead and rather inexpensively created by splicing the episodes together.
In 1964 ITC realized more money could be made by releasing Ramar to television, so six television movies were edited from various episodes. Of course, by now 52 episodes were available to draw from but they did have to be careful to use episodes with the same characters for consistency. The stories were often disconnected as the episodes weren't related. That's why such comprehensive titles as "The Hidden Terrors" or "The Savage Challenges" were used. All that was needed was a narrator to tie everything together.
White Goddess (1953)
In this first movie Ramar and Howard live in a wooden house in Africa, at Cooper's Corral, with Charlie and Walter. I have never seen this movie but have seen these episodes and the promotional literature for the movie. From the available descriptions, Ramar searches for valuable medicinal herbs, and encounters a tribe of natives ruled by a White Goddess. Lobby Cards and other promotional data confirm this story and these episodes. I have no doubt of the correctness because all episodes and numbers fit the storyline.
The movie is composed of episodes from series one: Evil Trek #1 / Tribal Feud #10 / White Savages #13
Eyes of the Jungle (1953)
The second movie takes place in India and is composed of episodes from series two: Mark of Shaitan #14/ Flower of Doom # / Voice in the Sky #26
I have never seen Flower of Doom as an individual episode, but the description and production number fits. If the pattern continues then Voice in the Sky would be episode #26 of the series. I have no doubt as to the correctness of this, but until I see a film leader with the #26 marking or see official documentation, I can not absolutely verify its number.
Thunder Over Sangoland (1955)
The third movie has Willy as the guide with his pet monkey, Babette. Episodes are, of course, from the third series. The team lives in a tent in Africa.
Missionaries Richard and Lyla are warned by a native girl of native disturbances and danger. They send for Ramar, who has been in India, for help. Ramar has a record player at his tent which attracts the natives and the missionaries are about to be killed when the record player scares the natives off. Ramar saves a native that has been shot. Willie has a girlfriend named Memoni. They are held prisoner by natives, as they are set up by the two villains, Galvin and Danforth. Galvin and Danforth then kidnap the missionary's wife. The natives find them and capture the girl. Ramar and company rescue her and are trapped in a cave. At the end of the movie, Babette is a gift to Willy from the missionaries.
Although the movie is titled Thunder Over Sangoland, it does not contain the episode of the same name.
This movie is composed of episodes from series three: Call to Danger #27 / Blind Peril #28 / Jungle Vengeance #29
Phantom of the Jungle (1955)
The fourth and final theatrical movie is from the fourth series of episodes and again with Willy and his pet monkey, Babette. The team lives in a tent in Africa.
A group consisting of Dr. Arlington, his daughter Nancy, Blake, and Dexter is on a quest for a Golden Egyptian Tablet. In the first episode, Lost Safari, Blake schemes to get the tablet. Nancy is kidnapped. Dexter takes the tablet and runs. In the second episode, Golden Tablet, Nancy is taken to find her father who has been presumed dead but is being held captive by Blake. Nancy leaves a tape recorder recording the events which serves as a clue for Ramar. The tablet is recovered and given back to natives. Ramar shoots Blake.
In the third episode, Flaming Mountain, the natives hold Dexter, Arlington, and Nancy as prisoners. They escape and Tom and Howard are then held as prisoners. Tom finally gets the tablet back from Dexter and returns it to the natives. A Volcano erupts and all barely escape.
The movie is composed of episodes from series four: Lost Safari #40 / Golden Tablet #41/ Flaming Mountain #42
Ramar and the Savage Challenges (1964)
References sometimes list this tv movie as Savage "Challengers". Even some ITC promotional literature lists the title as "Challengers". The correct title on the film print is "Challenges". Apparently the sales department wasn't always kept informed.
Ramar has four "challenges". The first is to save a tribal chief. In the second a murderer tries to gain oil rights by getting the tribes to fight amongst the whites. The third is to find the truth about the body of a poisoned husband in a grave, and the fourth is of a lady hypnotized to believe she is a leopard. The movie is compiled of film edited from four episodes. A narrator tells the storyline to bring some continuity to the otherwise disconnected episodes. The episode titles are: Savage Challenge, Thunder Over Sangoland, Dark Justice, and Lady of the Leopards.
Ramar and the Hidden Terrors(1964)
Promotional literature lists the title as "Unknown" Terrors. I have viewed the film and the correct title in the credits is "Hidden" Terrors. Again the staff at ITC must not have done their homework. The credits do indicate it was released by I.T.C. in 1964. Four episodes directed by Sam Newfield and Spencer Bennett make up this film. Like the other television movies the episodes are tied together by the voice of a narrator. The episode titles are: Mark of the Bola, Zombie Terror, Curse of the Devil Doll, and King of the Watus. All are available as complete episodes. The movie runs slightly over 80 minutes. At a time when ITC was having financial trouble and not making much revenue off of a ten year old tv show that had been rerun to death, It was easy for them to take four 25 minute episodes, cut out the credits and edit out some stock jungle footage to get about 20 minutes of story, edit four stories together for an 80 minute television film, add a couple of minutes of opening and closing titles, tie the stories together by overlaying a narration track, and sell this to television. All it cost them was a little editing time. The episodes of course had to be from the same production series so that the guides and locations remained the same throughout, but the material was there. With titles like "Savage Challenges" and "Hidden Terrors" you could just about select any four episodes you wanted and make them fit together.
Ramar and the Jungle Voodoo(1964)
Promotional literature lists six titles by I.T.C. This title was unknown until recently released on DVD by Alpha Video. The discovery of this film suggests there may be other unknown Ramar television features out there. Like the others it is a compilation of episodes drawn together by a narrator. However, this one draws from five episodes rather than the usual four. It is directed by Wallace Fox and all are first series episodes with Charlie as the guide. The episode titles are: Doomed Safari, Mask of Kreenah, Danger in Disguise, Contraband, and Sacred Monkey. All except Mask of Kreenah are currently available as complete episodes. The movie runs slightly over 77 minutes.
General Notes and Useless Trivia
The name Ramar has been mislabeled "White Witch Doctor". In the first episode, Evil Trek, and numerous times throughout the series, it is pointed out that the name Ramar means "White Medicine Man". Never in the series is he described as "White Witch Doctor" that I know of. However, many ads and pieces of promotional literature for the series do label Ramar as such. I guess the marketing department was not always aware of the correct information.
Nick Stewart who played Willy the guide played Lightnin' in the Amos 'n Andy tv series.
The name of the trading post is the Van Tyne's Trading Post and it is located in a village near Cooper's Corral. Cooper's Corral was built by Big Game hunters. You can find this in the first episode Evil Trek and other first series episodes.
Peter VanTyne is from Holland and has not been back to his native country in many years. Trudy has never been to Holland. ep: Tribal Feud
In the series Tom Reynolds, Ramar, is returning to Africa. His parents were missionaries there when he was a child. They died of fever and he was sent back to the States. Peter Van Tyne remembers him as a child and remembers his parents. This is made clear in the opening of the first episode Evil Trek.
What kind of doctor is Ramar? Howard introduces him as a Doctor of Medical Research. ep: Evil Trek.
The Van Tyne's houseboy is Jaba.
Howard mentions that he grew up in Vermont. ep: The Sacred Monkey, just before the panther attacks him.
The Gitflower plant is believed to be the plant of long life. The team recovered a sample from the White Goddess. ep: Evil Trek
The Garu monkey that heals Howard may also hold the key to long life.
Charlie Smart, the Cockney guide, was hired in Capetown when Ramar and Howard arrived in Africa.
Charlie's parrot is named Walter.
Jack O'Malley, the animal trainer, knew Charlie and Walter in Capetown. Charlie was his guide on a couple of occasions. ep: Striped Fury.
Irma Millikin is the White Goddess. Her husband met the two escaped convicts in jail. ep: White Savages
Willy's pet monkey Babette belongs to the missionaries they meet in the beginning of the third series. Richard and Lyla present Babette to Willy as a gift.
Willy's girl friend is Mirmonee.
Willy is of the Kanga tribe, from Kangaland. ep: White Savages.
In the third series Willy sometimes refers to himself as Willy-Willy. At the end of White Man's Magic he refers to himself as William. One collector made an interesting point about this. If his name is William he most likely had a last name. Thus, his name is likely Willy and a last name with a similar pronunciation. However, I wouldn't expect someone from the Kanga tribe to be named William when all of the others have distinctly native names.
The Kutchi Gundi tribe are the "Pack Rats". Gundi means "Rat", Kutchi means "storage". From the Golden Tablet.
Ronald believes he hears his dead wife Ann's ghost calling for him in Voice from the Past. "RRRonn...aald"
In Voice in the Sky, Howard says it sounds like the voice really is coming from the sky, and Tom replies that it is just an echo from the surrounding hills. Now if this guy is a professor and he can't tell what an echo is.....
But that's what makes the series fun!
Remarkable lines: The chief says "gun make no boom boom", Howard replies "you mean the gun had a silencer?" and the chief replies "No boom boom". I love that dialogue! from Mask of Kreenah.
The Native chief has a heavy southern accent in Savage Fury. I enjoy his line "This is a saaad day for mah people".
In Crocodile God of Kaa Ramar talks of fighting the Chief of the Muggermen and says he will "pin his ears back". Now there's a 50's expression!
In Crocodile God of Kaa Ramar asks Zahir to send a message to the Chief of the Muggermen that Ramar challenges him to a fight to the death. You hear a few pounds on the drums and the message is complete. A few more drums and Zahir reports the reply to Ramar. I always get a chuckle from that scene. A few drumbeats can say a lot.
Blooper? In White Man's Magic Conway's dummy is named Albert. Listen carefully and one time you will hear Ramar mistakenly call him Alfred.
Blooper? In Tribal Feud Trudy Van Tyne is being held in a native hut. Ramar enters to rescue her. In the hut she is unconscious, her eyes are closed. As he carries her out, her eyes are open. In the next scene, in the jungle, she is again unconscious.
Blooper? In Evil Trek Howard says he is a chemist. In Striped Fury we learn that he has been trained as a Botanist. So what is he?
The last time I know of Ramar being on television, I recall seeing the made for tv Ramar movies on Turner's television station back in the 70s. It was Superstation WTCG Channel 17 from Atlanta. They were on in the early morning hours on weekdays. Wish they had VCRs back then!
OK, Ramar fans out there. It's your turn. If you have any good trivia or notes for this page, please email them to me.
Epi-Log Magazine, issue #19, June, 1992
Internet Movie Database www.imdb.com