TV shows werent always continuous the ever-evolving narratives about McDreamy or Tony Soprano or Jack and Kate getting off the island were pretty rare until ensemble shows like St. Elsewhere and Dallas came along. But the forefathers of continuity, movie serials, actually hailed from long before that. These dramatic and often cheesy episodic releases about highway bandits and superheroes would get viewers to return to the theater week after week to find out what happened to their favorite characters.
Today, Cinema Paradiso (503 SE Sixth St., Fort Lauderdale) will showcase three early-΄40s series as part of Saturday Serials: King of the Texas Rangers, starring football legend Sammy Baugh as a Nazi-fighting lawman out to avenge the death of his father; The Adventures of Captain Marvel, the classic tale of ordinary Billy Batson, who transforms into a super-powered crime fighter each time he utters the word Shazam!; and Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe, which pits the famous space captain against Ming the Merciless. Five bucks gets you in to see the first three episodes of each serial. Come back the following week for episodes four, five, and six. The show starts at 2 p.m. Call 954-525-3456, or visit www.fliff.com.
Saturdays, 2 p.m. Starts: Aug. 23. Continues through Sept. 13, 2008