Northrop, in conjunction with McDonnell-Douglas, modified the YF-17 to make it a suitable fighter for the U.S. Navy. In June, 1975 the U.S. Navy (USN) announced its decision to acquire the aircraft and designated it the F-18. After modifications the Navy designated it the F/A-18.
The F-16 started as a concept to see if was possible to build a credible fighter plane that was significantly lighter and less expensive than the F-15, which was under development. The result was a multi-role fighter aircraft that is the workhorse of many air forces.
I've visited Virginia Beach a few times. Virginia Beach seems it would be similar to many other tourist cities along the U.S. Atlantic seaboard. Hopefully readers will find some parts amusing, some parts instructional, and some parts a time capsule.
The story revolves around three veterans and three New Year's Eve celebrations that span 100 years.
An anecdote about a social faux pas on Valentine's Day.
This is a look at some of the places and memories in New York City over the years. This article is mostly from personal experience. As with New York City in general some things have changed and some things remain constant.
There have been three films of note based on the 1957 Dr. Seuss book, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”. The movies are faithful to the book’s story arc. They all add to what is in the Dr. Seuss book. This article contains spoilers.
The National Cryptologic Museum, located in Annapolis Junction, is in the shadow of the National Security Agency building. It houses the cryptologic history, which spans the history of the United States. This museum adds another dimension to the history of the United States.
On January 22, 1968 few people ever heard of the ship. By sunset of January 23 almost everyone in the United States knew of the USS Pueblo.
Top Gun and Armageddon were movies that had manly men doing manly things. These movies had women in them but it was the men who were doing the real work. While women can enjoy these movies they are, either by accident or design, geared towards showing men at their best.
On November 22, 1963 I lived in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn, New York. What would have been a forgettable day turned into a day everyone who lived it would never forget. The way things were on that day changed dramatically in a few short years.
The USS Liberty was built during World War II. In 1967 the USS Liberty (GTR-5) was listed in “Jane’s Fighting Ships” as a research vessel. It was an open secret the USS Liberty was a spy ship. Mistakes by others spelled catastrophe for the USS Liberty.
Grumman developed the F-14 Tomcat. The Tomcat’s development and U.S. Navy retirement were controversial. The F-14 made its mark on military and film history.
"Kelly’s Heroes", "Play Dirty", and "The Battle of the Bulge" are three World War II movies that are not among the most well-known. Each of these movies have at least one scene that is so memorable that by describing the scene people would immediately know if they’d seen the movie.
Matthew & Rachael Kristiansen start a normal day. Matthew drives to work and Rachael stays home. They are oblivious to the horrific events that were in progress.
Versions of the Boeing 747 have been used in the USAF and NASA beginning in 1974. The 747’s size made it a natural choice for certain missions. The 747 history of government service shows the aircraft’s capability, says something about our history, and current capabilities.
The Boeing 747 first flew on February 9, 1969. It was the reigning “Queen of the Skies” for the rest of the 20th century. Boeing sold 1,546 747s. It was the first of the wide body jetliners.
Ghostbusters was released in 1984. It has become a classic. In 2016 a Ghostbusters reboot was released. The reboot recast the Ghostbusters as women. The reboot received much harsh criticism.
This film carries on the tradition of the film series. It has the almost nonstop action with excellent special effects. It is 147 minutes of action, intrigue, some humor, and tips of the hat to the television series and previous Mission: Impossible films.
A popular movie topic is college life. Many of them are comedies. One could make the argument it’s difficult to make a movie about college life that isn’t a comedy. This article has spoilers for the movies covered.
The Boys from Brazil, Marathon Man, and The Odessa File are three thrillers about NAZIs who were engaged in diabolical activities years after the end of World War II. . Former NAZIs up to no good after the war was a common theme in movies. These movies were a cut above other such movies.
The USAF acquired the first Boeing B-707 in August 1956. Since then about 900 B-707s have been built for militaries and other government agencies.
Baltimore’s Inner Harbor is a nice place for a day trip if you’re close enough. It is also a good place for a longer visit. There are many places to visit at the Inner Harbor and more places to visit that are close by. What you can do on a visit depends on time and your budget.
The Boeing 707 prototype, a model 367-80 made its first flight on July 15, 1954. It first entered service on October 26, 1958. It soon became the symbol of air travel. Boeing built 1,010 civilian versions before stopping production. There are about 130 707s still in civilian service.
In 1951 the United States Air Force (USAF) issued design specifications for a transport plane. Lockheed built the C-130A Hercules. The YC-130 made its first flight on August 23, 1954. It is still in production and holds the record from the longest continuous production run for military aircraft.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan is one of the largest museums in the world. The Metropolitan Museum of Art (The Met) has a large collection of paintings and sculptures. It also has much more. The Met’s artifacts span all of recorded history from all cultures.
The Incredibles 2 opened in the U.S. theaters on June 15, 2018 and was shown with the short Bao. These movies appeal to both adults and children. The movies have story lines that parents can identify with.
“Air Force One” is the air traffic control call sign of a United States Air Force (USAF) aircraft carrying the President of the United States. A fleet of aircraft is at the President’s disposal. This article is about the aircraft in the presidential fleet and aircraft presidents have used.
“Colossus: The Forbin Project”, “Soylent Green”, and “The Stepford Wives” addressed social and political issues of the day. Spoiler alert. These movies did not have upbeat endings.
Aircraft linked together in flight is a common occurrence. For decades the idea linking aircraft together has resulted in many successes and some crazy concepts. Some concepts haven’t gotten past the concept stage. Some concepts beg the question of how it got past the concept stage.
The A-10 USAF aircraft designed specifically for close air support. It can carry 8 tons or ordinance. It has a 30mm Gatling gun that can fire up to 4,200 rounds per minute. Titanium armor protects the pilot and parts of the flight-control system.
Artwork on military aircraft has been around since the beginning of military aviation. Artwork for fun has on occasion become heraldry and in at least one case took on a practical purpose. As with all art forms sometimes it was censored.
This article doesn’t cover movies made by the Axis Powers before their downfall. This article tells about some movies that have the Axis winning the day. These movies say much about the times they were made. This article contains spoilers.
The Northrop F-20 Tigershark’s development began in 1975 as the next phase of the F-5’s development. Northrop hoped it could continue its success in foreign sales with the F-20.
“Casablanca” created a generation of devoted fans and has picked up more fans over the decades. This movie has been copied and parodied countless times. This article contains spoilers.
It is 2467. The space ship Tereshkova finds a planet with 21st century technology has interstellar capability. The crew is obliged to make contact.
“The Manchurian Candidate” put communism and anti-communism together. The result is a Cold War Era thriller that is a time capsule and timeless. This article contains spoilers.
The B-1 started as a concept in 1964. It is one of the three intercontinental bombers in USAF service today. It has a long and controversial history.
A discount store chain needs a commercial for an campaign to sell jewelry for Valentine's Day. Previous campaigns have failed so they want an innovative ad to show during the Super Bowl.
The F-111’s development became an example of how not to develop a system. Its combat debut gave many the impression it was an advanced weapon system that didn't work.
This article is about war movies where the major characters are ‘the enemy’ from an American point of view. These movies are different from war movies that cover both sides of a battle.
The Douglas DC-3 first flew on December 22, 1935. It entered service in May, 1936. With over 11,000 built it was the most widely used transport in the history of aviation.
This movie premiered 40 years after the release of the original Star Wars. It seems a good time to compare it with other Star Wars movies. Science fiction has changed much since the first Star Wars.
“It’s a Wonderful Life” is a perennial Christmas favorite. “It’s a Wonderful Live” is a fantasy with a Christmas setting. This movie is geared to an adult audience. This article contains spoilers.
This is a look back at some tourist spots in The District during the 1980s in December. Some things have changed and some things are the same. The article describes the situation 30 years ago.
This article uses 2 classic TV sitcoms and a movie and a movie series to illustrate how the characters might be judged if their genders were reversed.
In August 2011 the MQ-1 Predator passed the 1 million flying hours milestone. The USAF plans to retire the Predator in 2018. The Predator made its mark in aviation history.
The Addams Family and The Musters may have been the pinnacle of preposterous television show plots. These shows ran from 1964-66. Their runs were short but they gave a lasting impression.
I visited the museum on Yoido Island a couple of times in 1986 and in 1991. This article is about the museum that was on Yoido Island and some of its artifacts.
The 10th Victim (1965), Death Race 2000 (1975), and Rollerball (1975) are set in the 21st century. The premise of each movie revolves around the most popular sport in the world.
A continuation of The Cesium Flash stories. Alfred travels to his friend Mike's house. He has to convince Mike his traveling companion is an alien then figure out a way to convince important people.
I have posted 100 articles on HubPages. . The purpose of this article is to share what I think I know not to praise myself or complain about HubPages’ perceived shortcomings.
The U-2 made its first flight in August 1955 and U-2s are flying missions for the U.S. Air Force today. U-2 production ended in 1989. The U-2 is capable of operating through 2045.
Dunkirk should be considered on any list of great war movies. The movie is based on the evacuation of allied soldiers at Dunkirk from May 26 to June 4, 1940.
In movies and TV killing a woman is dangerous. This article contains spoilers for many movies and television episodes. Times are changing but tradition dies hard.
When the B-52 was designed in the early 1950s its speed was comparable to the front line fighters of the day. The USAF plans to keep the B-52 in military service beyond 2040.
In 1969 Rod Serling hosted the pilot for “Night Gallery”. The subsequent TV series ran from 1970 to 1973. The series was innovative and went through some interesting changes through the series run.
This is a continuation of The Cesium Flash. It fills in some of the back story. It also brings up some new questions.
Northrop delivered this P-61, serial number 43-8330, to the U.S. Army on July 28, 1945. This P-61 is one of only 4 P-61 in existence today.
Set in 1967. East German intelligence sends the CIA a letter supposedly from a woman who wants to defect. The CIA sends an agent to assess the situation and act accordingly.
The original “Total Recall” (1990) was a box office success. The 1990 remake had twice the budget of the original and was a box office disaster. This article contains spoilers for the original.
Before World War II some women pilots made their marks on aviation history. It was inevitable women pilots would be involved in every capacity in World War II.
The P-51 Mustang is the plane that won the battle over Germany. Other planes contributed but it was the Mustang that turned the air war over Germany irreversibly in the Allies’ favor.
Alfred, an astronomer, found a way to predict when and where UFOs would land. He previously sent Jay Lyons to watch a UFO landing. He disappeared. Now Alfred and Susanna was go to watch a landing.
Television has many common episode plots. It is possible to have a television series that runs over 100 episodes without using an original plot line and without repeating a plot line.
The Ju 52 at the National Air and Space Museum’s Udvar-Hazy Center is actually a Spanish built CASA 352. The Smithsonian also has a Ju 52, Werke Nummer 560049, in its collection, in deep storage.
The 1993 movie “Groundhog Day” has become synonymous with the concept of repeating the same events numerous times. Many movies made before and after “Groundhog Day” have a similar premise.
The P-38 Lightning was the first high performance aircraft Lockheed built. The P-38’s speed compared favorably to the single engine fighters at the start of the U.S. involvement in World War II.
The Spy Who Loved Me, Star Wars, and Alien each had strong women characters that were similar yet different from earlier women characters. This article contains spoilers.
The Quiet Man, Queen of Outer Space, and How to Murder Your Wife are three movies that have male chauvinism on full display. This article contains spoiler for these movies.
Vought designed the XF4U-1 with the concept of building a lightweight fighter around the most powerful engine available. F-4U production continued until 1952 and 12,571 were built.
March of the Wooden Soldiers was not the first Christmas themed movie. It was the first Christmas themed movie to become a perennial part of Christmas television programming. Article has spoilers.
Development for the F-15 was done with the maxim, “Not a pound for air-to-ground.” Air Force pilots and leaders believed the F-15 was a winner some outside experts were skeptical of its capabilities.
The Outer Limits was a Science Fiction anthology series that ran from 1963 – 1965. Here are a few episodes and some questions they pose. This article contains spoilers for the episodes highlighted.
The National Air and Space Museum’s Hawker Hurricane Mk. IIC, serial number LF686, is on display at its Udvar-Hazy Center, Chantilly, Virginia. Hurricanes served both from land bases and from ships.
Dracula: Dead and Loving It, Love at First Bite, and Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein are comedies from 3 different eras that have Dracula as a main character. This article contains some spoiler
Manassas National Battlefield is adjacent to the City of Manassas. This is the site of the First and Second Battles of Manassas.
It may be difficult to image a space movie without aliens. Outland, Apollo 13, and Armageddon are late 20th century space movies that don’t have aliens. They represent 3 different approaches.
The Spitfire and the Me-109 were iconic World War II aircraft. These aircraft had a deadly rivalry throughout World War II and beyond. These aircraft were generally loved by their pilots.
The Blue Max is set in World War I. It is among the best air combat movies. The story is centered on ‘the enemy’. The allied characters get only cameo appearances.
Alice and Molly are sisters in Brooklyn, NY, 1964. After a dreary day they go to see a movie together. During the movie they see themselves as the female characters in an action/adventure movie.
Harpers Ferry, West Virginia might seem to be a typical tourist trap. Harpers Ferry is a good place to learn and better understand U.S. history.
Some movies have titles that can give moviegoers, and later television viewers, the wrong idea of what the movie is about. This article contains some spoilers about the movies mentioned.
The Harrier was the realization of a concept to develop a combat aircraft that could take off vertically. It has served in many of the conflicts the U.S. and the UK have been involved in since 1982.
Some television shows have characters that are difficult or impossible to like. Despite these characters being unlikeable they are liked or even loved by the show’s fans.
Bridget O’Connor finds 1850s New York an American nightmare. Cathy MacGrew's day job isn't going well as her art career blossoms.
A fictional short story about a woman who returns from a vacation in Ireland and finds the job situation is getting worse. Was her vacation just a short respite from a lackluster life?
On June 14, 1945 the Army Air Forces (AAF) accepted the B-29-45-MO, serial number 44-89292, from the Martin plant at Omaha. This aircraft dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
The First Men in the Moon, Robinson Crusoe on Mars, and Journey to the Far Side of the Sun are three 1960s space movies. They all involve aliens.
A theme park android, designated Donna 998, has a short but unusual encounter with a park guest. This brief encounter has a long standing effect on the android.
The Mosquito TH 998 was transported to the United States on August 17, 1962. The aircraft has been in storage at the Paul E. Garber Facility in Silver Hill, Maryland since then.
Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, Crack in the World, and Fantastic Voyage are Science Fiction Movies that have themes different from most science fiction movies of their era or any era. Spoilers!
The Smithsonian’s P-39Q-15-BE, serial number 44-2433, is currently on loan to the Niagara Aerospace Museum in Niagara Falls, New York. The aircraft doesn’t have a combat history.
In 1986 the movie Highlander opened in theaters. It has action and romance, good elements for a date movie. This article contains spoilers for the movies and some television episodes.
Many people, of various levels of expertise, make many predictions of what will happen in the future. Sometimes they put a date on when these predictions will come to pass.
Christmas Vacation is a 1989 Christmas comedy. Some things set Christmas Vacation apart from other Christmas movies. This article contains spoilers.
Not going is counter to what the experts in such matters say. I am not writing as an expert in such matters. If you are a company executive then this article is not meant for you.
A short story with a modern setting and A Christmas Carol type format.
Fail Safe is a drama about an accident which could lead to a nuclear war. Dr. Strangelove is a comedy about an insane United States Air Force general who tries to start a nuclear war. Spoilers here.
There is a Macchi C.202 Folgore suspended from the ceiling in the World War II gallery at the National Air & Space Museum in Washington, DC. It is one of the 3 remaining C.202s.
In America Election Day is within a week after Halloween. This short story combines Presidential elections with a Halloween theme.
Ellen Ripley and Sarah Connor were two capable characters who showed their capabilities and limitations in the first sequel. This article has spoilers to the original movies and to the first sequels.
The National Air and Space Museum’s collection includes a Nakajima Kikka. Nakajima received specifications for an aircraft based on the Me-262’s design.
The Fountainhead is a drama s about an architect who won’t compromise his designs. Ed Wood is a comedy about Ed Wood. This article contains spoilers for both movies.
In the Udvar-Hazy Center a Republic P-47, Focke Wulf FW-190, and Kawanishi N1K2-JA are on display near each other.
What gave The Day the Earth Stood Still its honored place in Science Fiction film history is the movie’s mature theme and message. This article contains spoilers.
One of the stars of the 1985 movie Top Gun was the F-14 Tomcat. One of the supporting performers was the A-4 Skyhawk. This supporting role could also describe the history of the Skyhawk.
After Star Wars there were many memorable outer space movies. They were rarely memorable because of the film’s quality or production values. This article contains spoilers.
The Apollo 11 coverage, which included live coverage of the first moonwalk, was arguably the most important TV event. This event displayed the great technological achievements mankind had made.
The last Arado Ar-234 Blitz (Lightning) in existence, Werke Nummer 140312, is on display at the Smithsonian’s Udvar-Hazy Center in Dulles, Virginia. . This aircraft served with KG 76 in 1945.
The Science Fiction classics Things to Come and Metropolis depict cities in the 21st century. This article contains spoilers for both these movies.
In June 1991 there was a World War II style victory parade on the Washington Mall.
Despiser and Iron Sky are two 21st Century low budget movies. These movies show what can be done with a small budget and a big imagination.
The HMS Reaper was constructed during World War II for wartime service. Its legacy is of more interest to aviation than to naval history buffs.
1968 saw the release of the movies Night of the Living Dead, Planet of the Apes, and 2001: A Space Odyssey. This article contains spoilers for these movies. These movies reflected 1968 and had a significant impact on the future of movies.
The National Air & Space Museum has a Ju 388L-1 (work number 560049) in deep storage at the Paul E. Garber Facility in Silver Hill, Maryland. It is the sole surviving Ju 388.
A fictional short story. Hans Barkhorn is a German historian in 2023. He performs historical research through time travel. He will go on a mission to 1923.
It is an excellent movie. I believe not knowing anything about it enhanced my viewing experience. Hayao Miyazaki wrote the screenplay and directed the movie.
The last Dornier Do 335 Pfeil (Arrow) is at the Smithsonian’s Udvar-Hazy Center. The aircraft is a Do 335A-0 Werke Nummer (Serial Number) 240102.
Village of the Damned, Gorgo, and The Day the Earth Caught Fire are three United Kingdom Science Fiction movies. This article contains spoilers for these movies and other movies mentioned in the article.
The HMS Barham fought in the Battle of Jutland in World War I and in a number of battles in World War II. There were many interesting aspects of her life, death, and aftermath.
The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, Forbidden Planet, and Earth vs. The Flying Saucers are good examples of American Science Fiction movies in the 1950s. This article contains spoilers for these movies.
The National Air and Space Museum has a Ruhrstahl X-1 on display in the Udvar-Hazy Center. The Fritz-X had a short but deadly combat history before the Luftwaffe phased it out in favor of the Hs-293.
A fictional short story about a woman who is the last surviving decendant of an Irish immigrant family.
This article contains spoilers. Here is a look back at some of the episodes to give a feel for the series, the times, and some lessons that can be gleaned from the episodes.
In the Udvar-Hazy Center’s James S. McDonnell Space Hangar there is the Smithsonian’s Henschel Hs-293 among the many missiles on display. The Luftwaffe used the Hs-293 against allied ships.
Certain movies have an ability to take the audience to a different time and place. This article focuses on three such movies; One, Two, Three; Young Frankenstein; and Ed Wood.
Here are some morals, lessons, and observations about 5 Twilight Zone episodes from the perspective of over a half century since they first aired.
The National Air & Space Museum has two F-4s in its collection. One F-4 is a record breaker and the other is a MiG killer. Together they represent the F-4's contribution to aviation history.
Sandra Bullock’s movie career has spanned 4 decades. The movies she has acted in provide some interesting life lessons. Here are four examples from her movies.
The Horton Ho-229 aka Gotha Go-229 was an aircraft that had an impressive theoretical capability. This aircraft causes many to wonder what might have been.
Before I saw the movie my niece told me it was the best movie she has seen and heard my nephew thought it was awful. Which is it?
A Fiction Short Story about a man who remembers stories his uncle told him when he was a child. Most were tall tales, but was one true?
The Bachem Ba-349 Natter (Viper) never flew combat missions. It came very close to flying such missions. This begs the questions what might have been and what the reaction might have been.
There have been two major movie adaptations of the H.G. Wells novel The Time Machine. They both have interesting similarities to the novel and the each other.
You are on your own near Dulles International Airport. Your time is limited so you have nothing to do and no place to go, right? Wrong!
There are only 2 known Me-41os in existence. One is on display in Great Britain. The other Me-410 belongs to the Smithsonian and is disassembled and in deep storage.
There are many lessons to learn from The Simpons TV series. Here are some lessons to be learned from an overview of some of the major characters
There have been five movies based on the H.G. Wells 1898 novel, The War of the Worlds. This article will focus on the Byron Haskin and Steven Spielberg films.
In the 1980's through the early 1990's the Korea Freedom League had an outdoor display of Korean War vintage artifacts.
The only known Tank Ta-152 still in existence belongs to the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum. It is currently awaiting its turn at restoration.
The Smithsonian has its Me-163 Komet in an alcove between the World War II sections, the SR-71, and the entrance to the McDonnell Space Hangar. It's the right place for this aircraft.
The Smithsonian's Udvar-Hazy Center has a MiG-21 on display. Its service history is unknown. Could it be part of a story that would read like a spy novel?
The Smithsonian's Me-262 has "kill markings". These markings tell the story of air combat over Germany in March 1945.
In August 1995 the American University opened a special exhibit about the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
The National Air & Space Museum’s Heinkel He-219 Uhu is one of two examples of this aircraft. The Smithsonian has part of its He-219 on display at its Udvar-Hazy Center.
The last flying He-111 crashed on July 10, 2003. Tragically the pilot and co-pilot, the only two people in the aircraft, died in the crash.
Should museums display aircraft as part of a contextual exhibit or should they be displayed without a historical context? There are advantages and drawbacks to each.
The National Air & Space Museum's aircraft collection includes an Ar-196 that served on the Prinz Eugen.
From 1976-2012 Andrews AFB hosted a joint service open house. In 2014 Andrews AFB announced they will no longer host an open house. Here is a look back at the Andrews AFB Joint Service Open Houses.
This is about my experiences on my two visits to Panmunjom in the mid-1980s.
The He-162 is an aircraft with more questions than answers. How much combat did it see? Did it ever shoot down another aircraft? Was the one in the Air & Space Museum's collect flown by a top ace?