...To Those Thrilling Days of Yesteryear! That's right Classic TV western fans - it's finally happened. Hi-Yo Silver, Away! Our favorite hero, The Lone Ranger, rides again! He is being given the DVD respect he deserves but has never received.
The years of wasting money on Lone Ranger DVDs only to get release-after-release of public domain junk that should have been dumped into the trash bin rather than the cut-rate DVD bin are over. Classic Media has produced the best quality and most extensive compilation of RE-MASTERED episodes of this icon of so many of our childhoods - whether male or female.
The Lone Ranger - the 75th Anniversary Collector's Edition includes every episode from Season 1 and Season 2, which aired on ABC from 1959-1960, together in one package. (In these seasons, Clayton Moore portrayed The Lone Ranger and Jay Silverheels was Tonto, his Native-American partner.)
In the classic story, our hero is a lone Texas Ranger who survived an ambush and was nursed back to health by Tonto, who referred to him as 'Kemo Sabe.' They bankrolled their efforts to do good via a silver mine, which also supplied the Ranger with the silver bullets -- the calling card he becomes known by throughout the West.
Enter the Lone Ranger! The first three episodes tells the origin of our hero, and how he met and joined forces with Tonto, as well as how he found his trusty steed, Silver. (Tonto rode Scout.) After that, the episodes chronicle their exciting adventures.
In addition to the 78 episodes (1,900 plus minutes) of the show on about a dozen photo-discs, this Anniversary set also includes three bonus episodes from the '60s cartoon series, a classic episode of Lassie featuring The Lone Ranger, and an original Lone Ranger radio show broadcast from 1950. But, not to end there, this great package includes an 88-page Commemorative Book, a complete episode guide, reprints of rare comic books and photos, and limited edition collectibles, too.
Fran Stiker and George W. Trendle created the Lone Ranger as a local radio program in 1933. It quickly went nationwide and was the cornerstone of the old Mutual Radio network. The "Hi-Yo Silver!" shout at the beginning of each episode is a recording of Earle W. Graser, who played the Lone Ranger on radio from 1933-1941.
Here is the complete Classic TV opening (which played over the strains of Rossini's `William Tell' Overture):
"A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust and a hearty `Hi Yo Silver!' The Lone Ranger...`Hi Yo Silver, away!' With his faithful Indian companion Tonto, the daring and resourceful masked rider of the plains, led the fight for law and order in the early west. Return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear. The Lone Ranger rides again!"
At the end of most episodes, the towns folk or others who were saved from the desperados often asked, "Who was that Masked Man?" to images of The Lone Ranger and Tonto galloping away into the sunset.
The Lone Ranger is truly immortal, with three feature films, more than 3,000 Classic Radio shows, 220 Classic TV shows, 18 novels, hundreds of comic books, and a Star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame. (In 1952, B-film actor John Hart replaced Clayton Moore, who had threatened to quit after 1950. He was being paid only $500 an episode for his hit show, and wanted a substantial raise. Audiences rejected Hart in the role, and after a mere 36 episodes Moore was back atop Silver. Moore wore the mask in 169 episodes through the end of the show's run in 1957, while Silverheels was Tonto for each episode of the TV series. Moore also brought and won a famous lawsuit to allow him to wear THE MASK and costume in personal appearances after he left the show. While the suit was pending, he wore wraparound sunglasses and starred in an equally famous sunglass commercial that asked, "Who was that Masked Man behind those Foster Grants?")
Still today, the Ranger remains a symbol of truth, justice, courage and friendship, embodied in the Lone Ranger creed, a copy of which is included in this boxed set, and reads in part: "I do solemnly swear to be honest and truthful...to pledge my hand to the weak...to pledge my heart to the helpless...to pledge my life to my fellowmen."
Hooray to Classic Media for this truly classic, and long-overdue, DVD tribute to the Ranger for both old and new fans alike.