Vanishing Son

I’m nostalgic today about mid-1990s television, since I recently started watching the show Nowhere Man. The pilot of this show was extremely well done, toying with the line of reality and paranoia in an effective way. The actors did a great job delivering simple but believable dialog. I never watched Nowhere Man in its days of syndication, but I did watch another show: Vanishing Son.

This was a brief martial arts series about Jian-Wa Chang (played by Russell Wong) and his brother Wago (played by Chi Muoi Lo) who fled to America for a better life. Wago fell in with a bad crowd and ended up getting killed by a gang (I think in the second episode), and goes onto give his brother advice from beyond the grave this. Along with Wago, two federal agents were killed and Jian-Wa becomes the prime suspect in their murder. He has to constantly evade the law and defend himself against the gang he pursues to find his brother’s killer.

For some reason, I loved this show when it aired, and I can remember my friend James and I watching it religiously in our makeshift dojo/gym in his parents’ basement in North Utica. But true to its title, as quickly as it aired, it disappeared into the ether of forgotten television, apparently never to resurface. Has anyone else seen this show? It would be nice to find an online feed or pick it up on DVD, for nostalgia’s sake. In the meantime, I’ll finish the 25-episode run of Nowhere Man. It’s getting worse, episode, by episode, but I don’t care because it’s so 1995 that it puts a smile on my face.

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