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Night Man

Entry updated 19 November 2023. Tagged: TV.

US tv series (1997-1999; vt NightMan). Syndicated. Glen A Larson Production/Alliance Atlantic Communications. Character created by Steve Englehart. Developed for television by Glen A Larson. Produced by Scott Mitchell Rosenberg, Janet Curtis-Larson, Scott Thomas. Directors included Allan Eastman, Robert Monica and George Mendeluk. Writers included Englehart, D G Larson and Steven Kriozere. Cast includes Jayne Heitmeyer, Earl Holliman, Derwin Jordan, Matt McColm, Derek Webster and Michael Woods. 44 45-minute episodes. Colour.

Johnny Domino is a saxophonist in San Francisco (see California) who is struck by lightning one night while riding a streetcar. This incident removes his need for sleep, and also provides him with the ESP ability to sense evil. Upon learning of this his friend, Scientist Raleigh Jordan (Webster in first season, Jordan in second season), provides him with an experimental exoskeleton somewhat similar to the Powered Armour worn by the Comics character Iron Man, if not as powerful overall. The body suit gives Johnny several Superpowers, including flight, Invisibility, enhanced vision in his left eye including the ability to see in the dark, and a laser which he can fire. Unlike many Superheroes of the period, Night Man faced a number of worthy opponents with superhuman or supernatural powers. These foes included several hostile Extraterrestrials, Vampires, ghosts, sorceresses, and Genetically Engineered beings. In one unusual episode he teamed up with Professor Jonathan Chase – the Shapeshifting star of Larson's series Manimal (1983) – to battle a time-travelling Jack the Ripper. Other cast members include Domino's father the retired policeman Frank Domino (Holliman), Lt Charlie Dann (Woods; first season only) and Lt Briony Branca (Heitmeyer; second season only).

Night Man was based on a Comics series created by Englehart for Malibu Comics; this was eventually purchased by Marvel Comics. [GSt]


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