Black Arrow (1944)
APPROVED · 4h 30min · Action, Adventure, Western · 20 October 1944
With a plot line mostly lifted from 1941's "White Eagle", Columbia's 24th serial (following "The Desert Hawk-1944" and ahead of 1945's "Brenda Starr, Reporter"), "Black Arrow" finds carpet-baggers Jake Jackson and Buck Sherman arriving in Blue Mesa in search of gold. Refused permission by Indian agent Tom Whitley to enter the Navajo reservation, they enter illegally. Black Arrow, son of Navajo chief Aranho, wins a place on the Council of Elders, nosing out Snake-That-Walks. Jackson and Sherman are intercepted by Aranho and Running Water, both of whom they kill. Before dying, Aranho tells Whitney that his son, believed killed years before in an Indian raid, is alive. With the appearance of a disgruntled tribesman named Snake-That-Walks and the information that the Indian agent has a long-lost son coming about in the first chapter, "The City of Gold", there isn't a whole lot going to happen in the next 14 chapters that hasn't already been telegraphed. But, under Indian law, the white man's chief must also be killed in retribution for the slaying of the Indian chief, and when Black Arrow refuses to kill Whitley he is driven off the reservation. At Big Mesa, Black Arrow teams up with Mary, general store operator, his friend Pancho and Whitley in an effort to find out to murdered Aranho. With Jackson, Sherman, Snake-That-Walks and an assortment of renegades and henchmen throwing pitfalls at him in 14 cliff-hanging chapter endings, Black Arrow gets justice, retribution and revenge by the end of Chapter 15, "The Black Arrow Triumphs."
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