Gunsmoke - The Complete First Season

Gunsmoke - The Complete First Season

Director: Charles Marquis Warren, Harry Korner, John A. Dunkel

Cast: Charles Marquis Warren, Harry Korner, James Arness, John A. Dunkel

The original radio version of Gunsmoke was in its third year on the air when the TV version made its CBS network bow on September 10, 1955. Replacing radio's William Conrad as Matt Dillon was tall-in-the-saddle James Arness, whose chief claim to fame at that time was his portrayal of the title role in the 1951 sci-fi thriller The Thing. Arness was a


The original radio version of Gunsmoke was in its third year on the air when the TV version made its CBS network bow on September 10, 1955. Replacing radio's William Conrad as Matt Dillon was tall-in-the-saddle James Arness, whose chief claim to fame at that time was his portrayal of the title role in the 1951 sci-fi thriller The Thing. Arness was a protégé of film superstar John Wayne, who in a good-luck gesture appeared on camera at the beginning of the opening episode, "Matt Gets It"--which like virtually all of the episodes seen during Season One was adapted from one of the original radio scripts. No sooner had this first episode gotten under way that Gunsmoke staked out its claim as TV's first "adult" western with a startling sequence in which hero Matt Dillon was shot down and nearly killed by the heavy of the piece! During its earliest episodes, the series boasts a different opening sequence than the familiar one in which Matt Dillon and an unknown assailant square off for a showdown in Dodge City's deserted Main Street. These initial episodes find Matt philosophically wandering around the town's cemetery "Boot Hill," as he introduces the story at hand via offscreen narration. Also, Milburn Stone's Doc Adams is younger and less cantankerous than he'd been in later years, while Amanda Blake's Miss Kitty is flashier and more flirtatious with Matt Dillon (Their relationship would always remain ambiguous, though it was clear from the "body language" of the two characters in the first season that they might have had something going on in the off-hours). Only deputy Chester, played by Dennis Weaver, is fully formed from the outset, though Chester's famous limp is a bit inconsistent--and, in at least one episode, he doesn't limp at all! Evidently in hopes of luring viewers away from NBC's high-rated The George Gobel Show, the producers of Gunsmoke stuffed the series' first season with no fewer than 39 first-run episodes,which were spread out over a nine-month period with but a handful of reruns. Appearing in several of these episodes are a number of actors who'd worked on the radio Gunsmoke, including John Dehner, Harry Bartell, Vic Perrin, Jeanne Bates and Lawrence Dobkin; and in the episode "The Pest Hole," Howard McNear, "Doc Adams" in the radio version, is seen as hotel keeper Mr. Bradley. Also seen on Gunsmoke's maiden season are such stars in the making as Charles Bronson, Claude Akins, William Hopper, Sebastian Cabot and DeForest Kelley.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
Originally a dramatic radio show, Gunsmoke presented the adventures of U.S. Marshal Matt Dillon (James Arness), who kept the peace in Dodge City, that legendarily wild-and-woolly frontier town of the late 19th century. Aided over the years by a slew of deputies that included Chester (Dennis Weaver), Festus (Ken Curtis), Quint (Burt Reynolds), and Newly (Buck Taylor), Marshal Dillon locked horns with some of the West's toughest hombres. In quiet moments he frequented the saloon run by Miss Kitty (Amanda Blake) and traded good-natured barbs with crusty old Doc Adams (Milburn Stone). Westerns were all the rage on network TV when Gunsmoke first hit the airwaves in 1955, but the show distinguished itself from the outset with reasonably intelligent scripts, relying less on traditional horse-opera action and more on character-driven story lines and fairly complex moral situations. A frequent Emmy Award winner, the long-running series played host to innumerable guest stars, some of them well-established actors and others who were then just beginning to climb the ladder of stardom.

Product Details

Release Date:
Region Code:

Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
James Arness Actor
Amanda Blake Actress
Charles Bronson Crego
Charles Gray Gene Tyler,Sheriff
Chris Alcaide Clem Maddow,Barnes
Claude Akins Harry
Dee J. Thompson Big Lena Wave
DeForest Kelley Will Bailey
Howard McNear Mr. Bradley
James Anderson Lucifer Jones
James Griffith Joe Kite
James Nusser Wilkins,Man
Jeanne Bates Mrs. Wyatt,Mrs. Nolan
Jeff Silver Yorky
John Abbott Professor Lute Bone
John Dehner Cope Borden,Nip Cullers
John Larch Clay Young
Jorja Curtright Cara
Leo Gordon Hack Prine
Lew Brown Sam Fraser
Lola Albright Lucy Hunt
Mary Carver Ann Smithwright
Mort Mills Bill Brake,Howard Bulow
Paul Newlan Mr. Stoner
Paul Richards Dan Grat,Neil Amber
Peter Whitney Jase Murdock
Raymond Bailey Gen. Parcley Smith
Robert Ellenstein Tewksbury
Robert Middleton Dutch George,Jake Worth
Royal Dano Obie Tater,Seth Tandy
Sebastian Cabot Ed Bailey
Strother Martin Cooter Smith,Mr. Stooler
Val Dufour Jerry Shand,Day Barnett
William Hopper John Henry Jordan,Tasker Sloan
Wilton Graff Troy Carver
Wright King Ben Walling
Ainslie Pryor Josh Nolan,George Maddow,Peak Fletcher
Anne Barton Quiet One
Brett Halsey Steve Esler
Dabbs Greer Jonas,Mr. Jonas
Dick Paxton Rudy
George Selk Moss Grimmick
Gloria McGhee Sarah Amber
Gloria Talbott Holly Hawtree
Hal Baylor Lee Trimble
Harry Bartell Ben Bartlett
Helen Wallace Ma Fraser,Mrs. Stoner
Herbert Lytton Jake Crowell,Hunter,Stranger
Howard Culver Mr. Hannah,Mr. Uzzel,Hotel Clerk
Jacques Aubuchon Augie Short
James Westerfield Rance Bradley
John Alderson Ed Nash
John Carradine Ephraim Hunt
Kathryn Adams Ella May
Keye Luke Chen
Lawrence Dobkin Will Jacklin
Lou Vernon Cal Ross
Malcolm Atterbury Mr. Seldon,Bird
Maurice Manson Andy Culley,Riesling
Milburn Stone Actor
Nora Marlowe Mrs. Bowen
Pat Hogan Buffalo Tongue
Robert Anderson Sheriff Jim Hill
Robert Easton Magnus Goode
Ron Hagherty Rusty (Blackie)
Russell Thorson Brady,Emmett Bowers
Terry Becker Emmett Fitzgood
Tom Pittman Jimmy McQueen
Vic Perrin Hank Springer
Vinton Hayworth Ben Sissle
Aaron Spelling Weed Pindle
Anne Warren White Fawn
Barry Atwater Mr. Bowen
Charles Webster Sheriff Benson
Chuck Connors Sam Keeler
Cyril Delevanti Turnkey
David Chapman Jesse Hill
Dorothy Schuyler Alice Fraser,Olive
Eduard Franz Amos Cartwright
Evelyn Scott Olive
George D. Wallace Dolph Trimble
Helen Kleeb Mrs. Randolph
James Drury Booth Rider
James Nolan Zack
James O'Reare Drew Holt
Jester Hairston Wellington
Joe de Santis Mr. Hawtree
Joel Ashley Nate Bannister,Nate Linus
Jon Shepodd Mitch
K.L. Smith Bill Pence
Marion Brash Belle Archer
Martin Kingsley Lee Polen
Marvin Bryan Jason Bradley
Mary Gregory Mrs. Seldon
Pat O'Moore Matthews
Richard Gilden Golden Calf
Robert Gist Rabb
Robert Vaughn Kid
Bert Rumsey Bartender,Sam the Bartender
Bill White Tad Fraser
Bing Russell Simon Fletcher
Brett King Pate
Dennis Cross Tom Brandt
Devlin McCarthy Braden
Don Garner Mr. Ringle
Doug Odney Tolliver
Duane Grey Delmer
Edward Platt Mr. Burgess
Jack Holland Danvers
James McCallion Vince Butler
Jean Innes Mrs. Reeves
Joe Scudero Munro
Mary Adams Nettle
Mason Curry Marty
Patrick Conway Quade
Paul Dubov Hunter
Peter J. Votrian Timmy Wyatt
Pitt Herbert Dealer
Robert Keene Dude
Than Wyenn Dealer,Sheriff Darcy
Thom Carney Jack
Virginia Arness Gypsy
Wally Cassell Oley
Wilfred Knapp Mr. Botkin,Sam Botkin
William Vaughan Mr. Twitchell
Adam Kennedy Andy Travis
Amzie Strickland Mrs. Hinton
Dan Blocker Lieutenant
Gloria Castillo Mrs. Ringle
Heinie Brock Drummer
Howard Petrie Abe Brandt
James Hyland Stage Driver
John G. Lee Young Farmer
John Patrick Jonas
Joseph Mell Bill Pence
Joseph Perry Witness
Michael Granger Handler
Norbert Schiller Franz Betzer
Ray Boyle Jeff Worth
Tim Graham Cowboy
Tommy Hart Clay
William Hamel Customer

Technical Credits
Charles Marquis Warren Director
Harry Korner Director
John A. Dunkel Director
Robert Stevenson Director
Ted Post Director

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >