The Rat Patrol Classified Dossier

Classified Document -- Classified Document The What's It All About Raid
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"Hey, I've Heard of That Show" Dept.:

"'I got all these ideas from watching movies and watching television. I was really just out there acting from what I saw on TV.' And he wasn't referring to Superfly or Shaft. 'Growing up, I didn't see one blaxploitation movie. Not one.' His inspiration came from shows like Mission: Impossible and Rat Patrol and films like The Godfather. 'I would study the guys in those movies,' he recalled, 'how they moved, how they stood, the way they dressed, that whole winning way of dressing. Their tactics became my tactics. I went from watching Rat Patrol to being in it.'"
-- Susan Faludi on gang culture, Ghetto Star, LA Weekly (10/8-14/99)

"We also saw a speeder/jeep blow up one of those droid tanks. I heard the fellow in front of me say, 'Aw - come on! You can't kill a tank with a Jeep!' I leaned over and said, 'You never saw Rat Patrol?' To which he replied 'Ah - that's right...' As that old World War II series Rat Patrol proved - you CAN kill tanks with jeeps. (Don't try this on your own battlefield... it only works on film.)
-- George Hill , Guns of the Menace: More elegant weapons, for a more civilized time, Echo Station - Exploring Star Wars (6/13/99)

The CCH Astrology Page & Mate Match Generator picks Gary Raymond and about forty other celebrities as having been born under the most favourable possible astrological circumstances ("These lucky celebrities are among the most blessed by the higher authority... from a list of over 3,200!"). It lists Shakespeare, Mozart, and Casey Kasem as having been born under particularly dreadful circumstances.
-- CCH Self-Empowerment Site: Astrological results and GR image and listing, 15 Aug 1999

"One show has Private Pettigrew clicking nonsense Morse over radio transmitter -- another episode Troy sends Morse in code -- sound is good but his keying is dreadful as nothing makes sense (another good example of poorly done Morse sound)"
-- Morse Goes to the Movies!, Canadian Railway Telegraph History, a web site critiquing the use of Morse Code in hundreds of films and TV shows, 2 May 1999

Seen Rat Patrol mentioned anywhere recently? Let us know!
This way to past sightings.

Content & Research Contributors:
Full Contributors list to come

This web site is a fannish, not-for-profit endeavour and is not intended to infringe on the copyrights of Lee Rich Productions, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. and United Artists, and/or any other owners of "The Rat Patrol."

August 2003: It's time for a whole revamping. I managed it for the Xena site, I'll get to work over here.

Something New: December 2000:

The Long Range Desert Convention is a go! Join fellow fans and special guests Gary Raymond and Donna Barr (and more to be announced) in Austin in the spring to celebrate The Rat Patrol, Hogan's Heroes, Garrison's Gorillas, Combat!, Jericho, and other 1960s WW2 shows. Get all the details at the convention page.

Ruth fills us in with a synopsis and commentary on the second of the authorised 1960s Rat Patrol paperbacks, Desert Danger.

Anne's Eclecticon report gives the highlights of this November gathering for Rat Patrol watchers and other media fans.

Still here: An interview with Gary Raymond.

Go straight to Indoctrination
Memorabilia on eBay | Online Club reaches 175 members | Articles and Reviews | The M&M (aka Drinking) Game | Cranking Up A Fine War | Research Library | The Great Eastern Brew Up | Jan shakes up the Episode Guide | Keep that V-Mail Coming! | Message Board | Past News Log

Basic Training | Ship Out to Africa | Briefing | Mobilization | Articles

We've been getting quite a few inquiries lately about where to find RP tapes and merchandise. You can find tapes at online auctions such as eBay, usually for a reasonable price, but consider joining the Yahoo Rat Patrol Club and asking there. Both sources can find you tapes recorded from 16mm master or from uncut broadcasts (sometimes higher quality than the old film masters).

How I learned to stop worrying and love eBay: Rat Patrol memorabilia shows up on eBay all the time. Be cautious about getting into a bidding war -- sellers often list their items as "very rare" or "special first edition," but most items come up again and again (trading cards, board game, books, model kits, comics, dolls, posters, photos, scripts, etc.). Lobby cards from Massacre Harbour are scarcer, but the actual poster is becoming easier to find. Try not to be too disappointed if someone swoops in and outbids you with five seconds to spare. And Caveat Emptor!

The Research Library - books and online sources for historical research, recommended and reviewed by LC Wells, with ordering information for the more hard-to-find items. We'd love to hear about books you've enjoyed and found useful, as well as get the heads up on books that don't quite pass inspection.

Jan's episode reviews and ratings are being added to the Episode Guide and Shameless Ratings System. If you want to know how many lines Tully had or how gullible Dietrich was that week, this is the place to find out.

book jacket Cranking Up A Fine War: The anniversary of V-E day (8 May 1999) is also the official publication date for CRANKING UP A FINE WAR by Col. Van Mayhall. He has worked incredibly hard for several years putting together a memoir of his World War II experience, including combat as a company commander and a stint as aide to General "Wild Bill" Weaver. On the personal side, there are stories about meeting Princess Elizabeth, Marlene Dietrich, General Patton, among others. Since it's a continuous story it fills in some gaps in anecdotal collections. It can be found at and Barnes and Noble online (it takes about a week for delivery, in spite of the listing on the pages). And be sure to ask about it at your local bookstore -- especially tell the independent, small bookstores about it. I'm biased, but I think it would make a terrific gift.

Keep that V-Mail coming... It has been great to hear from so many fans of this and other 60s WWII series. If you have any questions, filmography updates, or anything else to contribute, send us e-mail or post it on the message board. Also: a few updated links in Mobilization.

Character Bios: all the information the show gives us -- plus the lowdown on our lads', uhm, nicks and scratches. Rate the episodes! We've added a little survey to the Episode Guide. (Season 1 only, so far.) You can view the whole tally here.

The Rat Patrol Club on Yahoo! is a friendly place for fans to hang out and reminisce, to discuss everything from the show to history to the actors. It has 189 members as of mid-December 2000, a lively message board, and has regular chats of varying lengths for various time zones. You can often find members still in the chat room a good four or five hours after the official start time. There are four chats held each week:

  • Tuesday 10 pm (Eastern) (usually discussing specific episodes)
  • Thursday 9:30 pm (Eastern) (either freeform socialising or a specific "serious" topic)
  • Friday 12:30 pm (Eastern) (always a fun topic!)
  • ...and we have an enthusiastic and patient member teaching beginner's German on Sundays at 9:00 pm (Eastern).

You have to join Yahoo! to participate in the chats and message board, but that's easy and free (they just want your demographic information)...just go to Yahoo! and join up. Club members: This way to the Workshop Forum

Essays inspired by the current rebroadcast on Canada's History Television: Rat Patrol: From the Beginning (a belated appreciation), and a sociologist and fellow fan shares his musings on The Rat Patrol.

This way to past news.


In 1966 "ABC gave us The Rat Patrol -- four gorgeous GIs in their infamous Leapin' Jeeps...."

What's it all about? Three Americans end up in the North African campaign early in World War II, and with a British sergeant they form an unlikely team as a Long Range Desert Group (LRDG), creating havoc for one German officer in particular while engaging in frontal assaults, subtle espionage, and general explosive mayhem. The tough-as-nails sarge, the winsome but dangerous kid, the silent and enigmatic southerner, and the highly educated Englishman with a streak of Lawrence of Arabia guaranteed all the necessary elements for an action-adventure war show -- and lest we forget, add in the brilliant (but dreadfully unlucky) German officer with a sense of honour and a heart of gold. The Rat Patrol ran two seasons in a half-hour evening slot, contemporary with such programs as Combat!, Twelve O'Clock High, and Garrison's Gorillas. The episode plots ranged from ruminations on war to character studies to -- let's be frank -- nothing but a lotta shooting and blowing things up, all to a rousing and memorable theme by Dominic Frontiere.

What's Where?

  1. Indoctrination: Right here
  2. Basic Training:
  3. Ship Out to Africa: Meet the bad boys
  4. Briefing: Articles, episode guide, various fun, and the Mailing List
  5. Mobilization: Links to sites of historical interest

A guide to symbols:

Images from The Rat Patrol or other appearances

Biography and Filmography

Sound download gallery

A link to more detailed information