Adventures of Superman (1952–1958): Season 6, Episode 5 - The Atomic Captive - full transcript

A nuclear scientist who defected to the U.S. was exposed to nuclear radiation and has only a short time to live has been living in the desert. But agents from his country try to get him to return. Superman stops them but knows there's another agent whom they only by a code number will try to get him. When Clark tells Jimmy and Lois about him they go to see him and because they came in contact with him, they're no exposed to the radiation. They decide to flee not knowing they're going into an area where a nuclear device is to be detonated.


Adventures of Superman!

Faster than a speeding bullet.

More powerful than a locomotive.

Able to leap tall buildings
at a single bound.

MAN 1: Look! Up in the
sky! MAN 2: It's a bird!

WOMAN: It's a plane!
MAN 3: It's Superman!

NARRATOR: Yes, it's Superman,

strange visitor
from another planet,

who came to Earth
with powers and abilities

far beyond those of mortal men.

Superman, who can change
the course of mighty rivers,

bend steel in his bare hands,

and who, disguised
as Clark Kent,

mild-mannered reporter for a
great metropolitan newspaper,

fights a never-ending battle

for truth, justice and
the American way.


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"Warning. Keep away.

"The man in this house
is dangerously radioactive.

Any contact with
him can be fatal."

[RUSSIAN ACCENT] How thoughtful
of Dr. Ladislav to warn visitors

not to come near him.



Friends, Dr. Ladislav.

Go away, whoever you are.

It is dangerous to come in.

Do not worry, doctor.

We know you are radioactive,

but we are in no danger

while we wear these
radiation-proof suits.

We can even touch you
without harm to ourselves. See?

Yes, but what do you want?

What are you doing here?

We have come to take you to
the land where you were born.


You are a brilliant
scientist, Dr. Ladislav.

You have done
magnificent work in Nevada

in the development
of atomic energy.

Now your homeland needs
this knowledge you possess.

But this is my homeland.

I am a loyal citizen
of the United States.

Merely a naturalized
citizen, my dear doctor.

Your loyalty is still
to the old country.

And that is where you are going.

But this... This is ridiculous!

I am not going anywhere.

Perhaps this will convince
you that we mean business.

Your gun doesn't
frighten me, gentlemen.

As you may have heard,

a few weeks ago I was
exposed, accidentally,

to massive nuclear radiation.

Now I have but a
matter of months to live.

But since it did happen,

I am glad it was in the
service of my country.

Your real country
lies across the ocean.

That is where you will spend
what remains of your life

in our nuclear laboratories.


Go ahead and shoot.

I am doomed to die soon anyway.

Well, Igor, as it seems
this cannot persuade him,

I suggest you show him the
other weapon we brought wit us.

An excellent idea, Nikolai.

Do you recognize these
ladies, Dr. Ladislav?

My sisters.

Anna and Sonya.

You have them in your custody?

But I assure you, they are
quite comfortable, up to now.

But you wouldn't harm them.

Not if you come
with us voluntarily.

But if you refuse...

But you cannot take
me on such a journey.

I am radioactive.

And it would be harm to everyone

who would come in touch with me.

Not at all.

We have brought you
a radiation-proof suit

like our own.

When you put it on,

your radioactive power
will be harmless to others.

We will drive you to the coast,

where one of our submarines
is waiting to pick us up.

Now, if you will put
on the suit, please.

I have no choice.


Shoot him, Nikolai. Shoot him!

Well, I think that'll keep
them out of action for a while.

I'll have them picked up
before they're conscious.

Yes? Good.

But you must not come near me.

I wouldn't worry
about that, professor.

I don't think you're
sufficiently radioactive

to bother me.

I understand.

But how did you happen to come

just when I was
about to be abducted?

Well, let's just say that I had

some other business
in the vicinity.

Besides, doctor,

a lot of people are
concerned about you, sir.

A lot of people on our side
and on the other side too.

I suppose I should be grateful.

I am grateful.

And yet, I think it
would be much better

if you had not interfered.

You mean you'd rather return
to the old country with them?

Oh, no, but when
their government learns

what has happened to them,

I am afraid that
my two poor sisters

will be in very great danger.

I see now.

The oldest and the
grimmest kind of blackmail

in the whole world.


But with your help, doctor,

I think we can beat
them at their own game.


Well, these two
are mere hirelings.

But the real head of their
operation in this country

is a man known to
our government as X29.

Only a number, but
he is the most ruthless,

deadly secret
agent who ever lived.

So I've heard. So
I've heard, doctor.

When he learns his
first plan has failed

I'm sure he'll make a
second attempt to kidnap you,

and this time...

This time, he'll
do it personally,

and with you as bait,

we're able to catch both him
and his entire organization.

I am willing, of course.

But what about my poor sisters?

Oh, their situation is
desperate, of course.

But, you know, any
promises made to you

by these other people
are completely worthless.

I know. I know.

Well, cheer up.

Maybe things aren't
as bad as we think.

Let's hope so.

Meantime, I'm at your disposal.


I don't suppose you
happen to have a whistle?

A whistle?

Yes, you know. A bird whistle,

a police whistle,
anything like that?

Why, no.

Well, can you whistle yourself?

You mean like this?


Yes, that's very good.
Now try it again, please.


Good. Now, whenever
you're in danger,

you whistle just like
that, and I'll be here.

By magic? [LAUGHS]

But this whistle will hardly
carry beyond this room.

No, doctor, it isn't magic.

You see, I happen to
have supersensitive hearing.

And I just tuned my
ear to the exact pitch

of that whistle. Yes.

So I can hear you
regardless of wherever I am.

It is remarkable.

I thought you were joking.

Oh, no, doctor, I
assure you I'm not.

And now, if you'll excuse
me, I have business elsewhere.



Yes, I see.

Well, you use your
own judgment on that.

Very good.

Well, Jim, maybe
today will be the big day.

I wouldn't bet on it, Miss Lane.

They've already
postponed the test 17 times

because of bad weather.

Well, think how
the chief must feel.

He sends us out here
to cover this atomic test,

and so far it's been
nothing but a vacation.

If you can call standing
around in a concrete bunker

in the middle of
the Nevada flats

for weeks on end a vacation.

Don't get discouraged.

We'll get a story
sooner or later.

Sure, if we make
one up ourselves.


Oh, General Barrows,

are you going ahead
with the explosion?

We're not quite sure yet,

but we may get the
go-ahead signal any time now.

Well, at least we can wire that
much back to the Daily Planet.

You can wire what
back to the Planet?

Hi, Mr. Kent.

They postponed the test again.

And you're a fine
reporter, walking out on us

and leaving us
to do the waiting.

Where have you been?

Visiting Mr. White's
friend, Dr. Ladislav.

Isn't he the atomic scientist

who has to live
alone in the desert

because he's radioactive?

That's right, Jim.

And it's a strange thing too.

Up till now, nobody
who has been radioactive

has been a danger
to other people.

And live, that is.

But, Clark, I thought no one
was allowed to get close to him.

Oh, now, Lois, you know
me a lot better than that.

I'm not about to get close
enough to be dangerous.

Besides, I just went over to
check on a couple of people

I heard were gonna kidnap him.

BOTH: Kidnap him?

Oh, it didn't
amount to anything.

I didn't bother to file
the story. Forget it.

A big deal like that and
he didn't even wire it in.

He's getting pretty
offhanded about it, isn't he?

Either that or he's trying to
pull the wool over our eyes.

Listen, Jim, let's us go out
and see if this Dr. Ladislav

is really in danger
from a foreign agent.

Golly, I dig this
foreign agent stuff.

He's probably
some sinister fella

with a thick accent
and big black mustachio.

Come on, Jim.


Come in.

You...? You are Miss Collins?

Yes, I am Miss Collins. Come in.

You look amazed, or frightened.

Identify yourself.

I... I don't know.

You don't know?

Identify yourself.

X249, Zerinski.

But... you are X29?

Yes, I'm X29. You're surprised?

I am amazed.

Forgive me, but you are
not exactly what I expected.

Therein lies my value.

The typical American girl.

But I assure you, it
wasn't easy, my friend.

Six years at the academy,
learning the language,

studying with the experts
every phase of American life.

You are their masterpiece.

I'll do, I guess.

I know more about America
than most Americans do.

Tell me, what happened to
Igor and Nicolai and Dr. Ladislav?

Igor and Nicolai
have disappeared.

I tried to find out if
they had been arrested.

I could learn nothing.

This means they
failed in their attempt

to kidnap Dr. Ladislav.

The stupid bunglers.

We'll have to complete
the job ourselves.

But what if there is a trap?

We'll avoid it.

Do you have any
more antiradiation suits?

In the car.

But suppose there is
someone else with Dr. Ladislav?

Then it'll be just
too bad for them.

Look, Miss Lane.

Maybe we better
not go any further.

It says that Dr. Ladislav
is dangerously radioactive.

"Any contact with
him can be fatal."

Maybe the sign's just
to scare people away

like "beware of dog" signs,
where there isn't a dog?

That's probably it. Come on.

I warn you, if you
come to abduct me

you will be in great trouble.

I have a way to save myself.

It's all right, Dr. Ladislav.

We're friends.

How do you do, sir?


Go out. Quickly.

Oh, we're reporters
from the Daily Planet.

We met you once in
Mr. White's office, remember?

Yes, but please, go out.

You don't understand.

I am radioactive,
and you are in danger.

Why, you don't have to try
and bluff us, Dr. Ladislav.

Yes, but you must not interfere.

Otherwise, I'll have
to whistle for help.


But who'd hear ya?



Yes, and if you
leave me no choice...


When I am nervous,
my mouth gets dry

and I can't whistle.

May I have a drink of water?

We're wasting time, doctor.

If we're to save you,
you must come along.

No, no. Please don't touch me.

Don't touch!

Please, doctor.

It's too late.

You have doomed yourselves.

You mean... you
really are radioactive?

Fatally. And since you
have touched me, so are you.

Oh, no. I can't believe it.

You must believe. It is true.

Here. Here's the Geiger counter.

See for yourselves.


Golly, Miss Lane.

I guess we're done for.

There is no hope for us?


Well, guess we have
nothing else to lose

but a great deal to gain
for the United States.

What do you mean?

We'll take you out
before that agent

can use your scientific
knowledge against the country.

Now, come on.

No, you don't understand.

I must be here waiting
when they will come for me.

That's what you think, doctor.

Come on, please. Let's go.

No, no...


Very well. I'll go with you.

But on one condition.


Yes. We must not
go to any city or town

or any place where
there are people

that we might contaminate.

He's right, Jim.

I know.

But now the only important thing

is to get the doctor
away from here.

Let's go deep into the
desert and sit it out, I guess.


The weather report
looks favorable, huh?

Very good. I'm glad
the waiting's over.

Right. We'll be
ready to detonate

as soon as we get your signal.

Well, that's it. I
guess you heard.

I sure did, general.

The greatest atomic blast ever.

As the British say, this
should sure be quite a show.

I hope so. Oh, Nelson,

in exactly 15 minutes,
if I've had final word,

you'll arm the nuclear device.

It will explode exactly
one minute later.

Oh, uh, general,
just one second, sir.

What if something
should go wrong

at the very last minute?

Once the bomb is armed,
nothing can stop the explosion.

However, what can go wrong?

I wish I knew. I
hope nothing, sir.

Too bad your young colleagues
will miss the blast after all.

You mean, they're not here?

Well, I imagine they got bored
with all the postponements.

They must've gone to Las
Vegas to see the sights.

Excuse me, general,
but are you sure?

Well, I saw them leave

in Miss Lane's car
quite a while ago.

They seemed anxious to get away.

General, there've been
so many postponements,

couldn't we postpone this
test just one more time, sir?

Not unless the weather changes.

Otherwise, the explosion
goes off on schedule,

and I don't think
there's gonna be

any change in the weather.


What are you puffin' at?

I-I'm trying to whistle.

He is gone!

He can't be gone.

You go outside and
search around the back.


Safety bunker. General
Barrow speaking.

Right. Set controls
for five minutes.

Five minutes?

Well, that was it.

Pretty soon comes the fireworks.

And still no sign
of your two friends.

That's right, general.

No sign.

I suppose you
know you're driving

right towards ground zero.

I know, but in any
other direction,

we'd be driving
towards populated areas.

This would be a
great place to be

if they set off the
atomic explosion.

They postponed it 17 times.

Why should they
unpostpone it today?

Anyway, what difference
does it make to us?

Yeah, I guess you're right.


There is no sign of him.



It's a cloud of dust.

It must be a car. Come on.

Four minutes, huh?
Then what happens?

At precisely 4:00, Nelson
there will press a button

that will arm the
nuclear device.

And that's it, huh?

That's it.

Exactly 60 seconds later,
the bomb will explode,

hot or cold, ready or not.

No power on earth can stop it.

Three minutes.

There's something behind us.

It's another car. It must be.

They're coming after me.

If I could only whistle.

Oh, never mind the whistle.

Jim, drive faster.

I have a strange feeling
something's wrong.

Please call it off.

You have the
authority. Call it off, sir.

I'm sorry, Mr. Kent.
That's impossible.

I'll take the responsibility.
Please call it off.

You'll take the responsibility?

I'm afraid you have no
responsibility in this matter.

One minute.

Jim, what's the matter?

I hate to tell you
this, Miss Lane,

but the car's
running out of gas.

Oh, Jim, how could you?

Well, after all, it's your car.

I know, but you're supposed
to do something about this.


Come on, we gotta run for it.

Don't be silly.

They'd get us before
we'd run 100 yards.

GENERAL: Arm the bomb.

CLARK: Sixty seconds, 59, 58,

57, 56...


Thirty-five, 34, 33...


You finally managed
to wet your whistle?



There are two cars out there.

I can't see anything.
How can you?

Never mind how I
can, take my word for it.

Stop this test.

It's too late, I tell ya.

Nothing can stop the explosion.

Stop! Stop, you'll be killed!

Kent, stop! Stop!


Doctor, what in the
world are you doing?

What are you looking for?

He said I had only to
whistle, and he would come.

He said? Who said?

Why, Superman.




There's something flying
above the explosion site.

It's a plane or...


Why, it is Superman.

He's reversing the explosion.

He's driving it back
under the ground.

The bomb did go off, but
there's no sign of it now.

I don't understand it.

It is incredible.

It just seemed to
disappear into itself.

Superman! Superman.

So it was you who
performed the miracle

of reversing the
nuclear explosion.

I'm afraid I'll have to
plead guilty to that, doctor.

We were being chased by spies.

They were trying to
capture Dr. Ladislav.

I know, Jimmy, but
their car is wrecked.

They're on foot now,
they won't get very far.

Oh, by the way, doctor,

you might be interested to
learn that X29 is not a man.

Not a man?

You mean we were being
chased by a lady spy?

Well, a woman, Jimmy.

I'd hardly call her a lady.

Now, if you two will
take the good doctor

back to Mr. White's
office, I'll join you later.

I have another chore
or two to perform.

Just a minute,

the three of us have
been exposed to radiation.

And now that
you've come near us,

you're contaminated too.

This is terrible.

Well, you all seem to
ignore that I've just come from

the middle of a nuclear blast.

If anything, I'm twice as
contaminated as you all.

That's right.

And I fear that this is
the end of Superman.

Well, I wouldn't
exactly say that.

You see, doctor,
I have a theory.

I believe that my
molecular polarity

is the exact opposite
of other people's.

If this is the case,

then your radioactivity
is the reverse of ours too.

That's right.

I think that a negative
radioactive charge

will cancel out a positive
radioactive charge.

If this is true,
we're all saved.

So let's try it anyway, shall
we? Give me your hands.

Put 'em right in here.


Do you think we've
been decontaminated?

I feel sure of it, Miss Lane.

Jimmy, will you get
the Geiger counter?

Yes, sir.

Golly, It's true. We're
not radioactive anymore.

You mean, even I
am no longer doomed?

That's right, doctor.

You have many years
ahead of scientific research.

Now, if you'll excuse me...


Well, guess we better get going.

Miss Lane.

Ah, yes. No gasoline.

Perhaps somebody
will pick us up.

Shall we start walking?

Might as well.

I tell you, it's
the biggest story

the Planet has ever published.

I'm proud of you.

And I congratulate you
on your miraculous escape.

Oh, it is Superman
who has to be praised.

My only regret is that my
two sisters in the old country

probably will never know.


Anna. Sonya. It's so wonderful!

However can I thank you?

Please don't try, sir.

Miss Lane.

Golly, you flew all the way
across the ocean to rescue them.

I sure wish Clark Kent
were here to see this.

Yes, where is Kent anyway?

Oh, you know Clark.

He never shows up
till everything is over.

That's right.

Oh, now, Miss Lane,

I wouldn't exactly say that.

You wouldn't expect Kent
to get around as fast as I do.

Would you?


Don't miss the next
thrill-packed episode

in the amazing
Adventures of Superman.

Superman is based
on the original character

appearing in Superman magazine.