‘The Lone Ranger’: Would Werewolves Have Packed Cinema Seats?


TheLoneRanger2013PosterI’ve never been a huge fan of Wild West movies, with the obvious exception of the “Weird West” horror and fantasy stuff: Dinosaurs in hidden valleys, vampires versus bandits, and other cross-genre calamities that probably mortify purists.

I probably don’t need to even say this, but I skipped seeing the latest attempt to bring The Lone Ranger to the movies. The pistol-packin’ white knight always seemed anathema to my own admittedly skewed tastes. He’s too much of a straight arrow for me; too pure.

Even the Ranger’s clothes are inexplicably immune to the Earthly dust and grime that the rest of us must endure, as if he is beyond the fallible clay of mortal existence. Then there’s the bullets. Silver: a symbolically “pure” metal. Who packs silver bullets besides the Ranger? Werewolf hunters, that’s who. Wait a minute. Step back: The Lone Ranger and Tonto versus desperado wolf-men? That sounds like a movie I’d go to see.

According to rumors, at least one person in Hollywood was willing to bet on the same premise: “The Lone Ranger” Director Gore Verbinski.

Although he denies it now, the word is that the original script for “The Lone Ranger” had the masked man and Tonto squaring up against a pack of lycanthropes. While radical retconning like that may have turned off Lone Ranger die-hards, there is a chance that it could have brought in new blood like myself. Splashing in a little bit of the fantastical sure seemed to spice up the “Pirates of the Caribbean”.

There’s no guarantee, though. Spooky supernatural critters do not a quality retro-action movie make. (Did you see “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter?” The less said the better.) While I can’t say it would have helped “The Lone Ranger”, it certainly couldn’t have hurt. At this point, it’s a flop by most standards.

One man’s flop is another man’s treasured film, though. “John Carter”, another Disney film, is a fantastic example of that, in my opinion. I loved the movie, even though most critics – and apparently a majority of movie-goers – did not feel so fondly about the film.

As I said, I’ve not seen “The Lone Ranger”, so my take on it has to be judged for what it is: the perspective of an outside observer who’s not particularly fond of the character or franchise. Have you seen the film, Unbound Worlds readers? If you haven’t, would werewolves brought you out to see the film? Sound off in the comments below.