Love that Masked Man — but I’ll skip the movie

My Lone Ranger wallpaper

The “new” Lone Ranger opens today, but the reviews are already in. In newspapers around the world, the reviews are appalling. Really bad. Not a little bad. Seriously terrible. I had no plans to see it anyway, so these reviews merely confirmed my expectations.

The Lone Ranger Panned and Predicted to be Box Office Poison by Mike Smith gives a pretty good summary of the reviews to date. It’s exactly what I expected. I would have preferred to be wrong. Given the Johnny Depp factor, I expected a travesty and it appears we got one.

Seeing the movie would desecrate the memory of my first true love. If I don’t see it, at least I have my memories.

From my first earliest encounter with The Masked Man and his Faithful Companion, I was in love. There were times when it was unclear whether I loved the horse or the rider. I think Silver had an edge, but I yearned for the both.

To satisfy my passion and because I grew up when wallpaper was something glued to walls, I had Lone Ranger and Tonto in my bedroom. Life was not easy for me, but I had the daring and resourceful masked rider of the plains all around me. It helped me through the really dark times.

Other girls had Disney Princesses, but I had “Hi Yo Silver” and “The Lone Ranger.” Although my walls did not play music, I could hum well enough, and I had many a long chat with Lone and Tonto as I lay abed pondering the meaning of life and how I could convince mom to let me have a horse. And hoping I’d discover I was adopted. Because if I were adopted, there was some small hope my real parents would come and take me away. Unlikely, but kids are optimists.
The original Lone Ranger and Tonto — Jay Silverheels and Clayton Moore

Eventually I grew up and out of my wallpaper, but it did not end my allegiance to The Masked Man. Even now, I’ll happily watch the old reruns. Silly? Maybe. But kindly, with some dignity allowed to the characters.

And, whatever else you could say about the show, they managed to cast a real Native American as (gasp) a Native American! More than half a century later, we get Johnny Depp? That’s the best we can do?

Remakes don’t have to be awful, even though they usually are. There have been remakes that are better than the originals. I can name several off the top of my head and probably so can you. It’s not impossible but it requires studios to make an effort to produce quality films. To get a good script and assemble a cast that can do it justice. It’s not that hard to make good movies. Good script, good actors, competent director. Voila! A good movie. They just don’t make a real effort.

My initial delight at learning Disney was making a new Lone Ranger movie changed to dread when I realized Johnny Depp was playing Tonto. We awaited the release of  trailer of the new “Lone Ranger” with foreboding. We were right to worry.

We watched the trailer. After it ended, silence enveloped us. Garry and I, wrapped in our individual thoughts, sat for a while. Thinking. Finally, I turned to Garry and said:  “Let’s wait till it comes to cable.”

He pondered that for a minute or two. “No, he said. “Let’s just wait.”

Author: Marilyn Armstrong

Writer, photography, blogger. Previously, technical writer. I am retired and delighted to be so. May I live long and write frequently.

19 thoughts on “Love that Masked Man — but I’ll skip the movie”

    1. Nooooo…Not Johnny Depp! Let me take him off your hands – LOL
      I’m not a fan of remakes – in general. I have only seen one movie made from a tv show that I liked. All the rest have been blah or I haven’t attempted to watch it for fear of the grand disappointment. But – to each his/her own. I haven’t seen promos or the trailer for the Lone Ranger – so didn’t know who was in it. Sometimes I live under a rock. I think I would watch it for the simple fact that JD is in it. But – with the reviews & your post – I will wait for it to come out on Netflix or tv.


      1. If I didn’t love the old Lone Ranger so much, I probably wouldn’t really mind, but I did. I know I was just a little kid, but love like that is forever!


  1. I actually liked the last Lone Ranger movie, “The Legend of the Lone Ranger”. It is considered one of the biggest disasters in Hollywood history.


  2. Try again. I like Depps acting, I know Im a minority. I did not watch the Capt. Sparrow movies. I do not want a remake or expect a remake of the original. I don’t even expect a western except in its setting. I expect a comedy, that’s Depp.
    I might not like it but I have different expectations.


    1. Depp is good when he has a strong director to keep him from chewing the curtains, He can give good nuanced performance — but usually not, especially not with this director. Miscast and probably misdirected. Double sigh !


        1. Agreed. But also playing Barry in “Finding Neverland.” That was a touching, lovely performance. Very unlike most of his roles.


  3. Pooh on me, *Try again, was for me, it was my second time replying. Honest, wasn’t written to you.
    Depp looks so yummy that maybe I don’t see the acting.


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