TV Classic Westerns 2

Overview

This DVD, like its predecessor (only more so), is chock full of seldom seen and long unseen television Westerns, all but two of them (Wagon Train and Sugarfoot) half-hour shows. The Rifleman and Wagon Train were shown for years on The Family Channel, but the rest of the contents of this disc will be new to anyone under the age of 48 or so. The Deputy, created by Roland Kibbee and Norman Lear, was loosely inspired by the Anthony Mann-directed Western The Tin Star. Henry Fonda portrayed Chief Marshal Simon Fry, ...
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Overview

This DVD, like its predecessor (only more so), is chock full of seldom seen and long unseen television Westerns, all but two of them (Wagon Train and Sugarfoot) half-hour shows. The Rifleman and Wagon Train were shown for years on The Family Channel, but the rest of the contents of this disc will be new to anyone under the age of 48 or so. The Deputy, created by Roland Kibbee and Norman Lear, was loosely inspired by the Anthony Mann-directed Western The Tin Star. Henry Fonda portrayed Chief Marshal Simon Fry, whose territory encompassed a large chunk of Arizona, including Silver City, where Deputy Marshal Clay McCord (Allen Case), a store-keeper turned lawman, was based. Out of more than 70 episodes, Fonda starred in only a dozen, otherwise doing little more than walking through the plot in progress or introducing the episode. The second of the two episodes here, "Hard Decision, is the more interesting, as McCord and then Fry are taken prisoner by the brother of a convicted murderer scheduled to hang in the morning. Fonda is the star and his charisma, coupled with a decently suspenseful plot, carries the show. The Rifleman episode "Day of the Hunter, written by John Dunkel, offers a killer performance by veteran character actor John Anderson as a legendary frontiersman -- and someone idolized by protagonist Lucas McCain (Chuck Connors) when he was a boy -- who makes a suicidal challenge to McCain in a shoot-out with rifles, with McCain's son Mark (Johnny Crawford) caught between them. Anderson and Connors are superb, and the direction by Joseph H. Lewis was as good as one found in motion pictures of the period. The Wagon Train episode "The Malachi Hobart Story" is a strangely whimsical, light-hearted tale with serious overtones, telling of Denny "Scott" Miller's Duke Shannon character crossing paths with an itinerant preacher and veteran con artist Malachi Hobart (Franchot Tone), who finds his way to righteousness and salvation despite his own better judgment. Shotgun Slade was a strange series starring Scott Brady as a Western soldier of fortune armed with a unique weapon: a two-barrel long gun combining a shotgun and a rifle in one. The strange part of the show wasn't Slade or his weapon, however, but the score by Gerald Fried, a heavily jazz-inflected body of music with prominent guitar, as though someone had commissioned Mary Osborne to participate in a parody of the score for Peter Gunn. In "A Flower on Boot Hill, Slade tries to solve the mystery of some missing money from a robbery and the involvement of a doctor (William Roerick) who is fixated on the cemetery. The Sugarfoot episode "The Return of the Canary Kid" presents series star Will Hutchins in a dual role, as both Sugarfoot and his outlaw twin cousin. The best scene is a prison escape through a swamp. Finally, Stories of the Century was the most well-intentioned series here, basing its scripts on true incidents. In "Geronimo, Jim Davis plays a government agent who is assigned to bring the warrior Geronimo to justice and prevent further attacks on civilian and military posts. The disc itself is programmed for easy access to each program, and every episode gets three chapter markers to break down the action and plot. The prints are all clean and relatively unmarked, except for the occasional vertical scratch on the side, and the sound is all mastered at a decent volume. The menu opens automatically on start-up and allows for either continuous play or a return to the chapter-list for each program selection.
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Special Features

Interactive menus; Scene index; Digitally mastered
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/30/2002
  • UPC: 096009067991
  • Rating:

  • Source: Platinum Disc
  • Presentation: DOLBY
  • Time: 3:20:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 34,445

Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. The Return of Widow Brown: No More Runnin' Away [5:58]
2. The Return of Widow Brown: The Hanging Tree [9:05]
3. The Return of Widow Brown: Treasure Hunt [10:17]
1. The Hard Decision: A Lot of Surprises [8:49]
2. The Hard Decision: Time Don't Stand Still [7:40]
3. The Hard Decision: The Nick of Time [5:01]
1. Day of the Hunter: Too Long out There [8:50]
2. Day of the Hunter: Indian Challenge [5:19]
3. Day of the Hunter: Big Game [11:21]
1. A Flower on Boot Hill: Here's Our Chance [8:55]
2. A Flower on Boot Hill: Dearly Departed [4:50]
3. A Flower on Boot Hill: Show of Sympathy [12:07]
2. Wagon Train: Advance, Friend [12:51]
3. Wagon Train: The Hobart Gold Finder [18:23]
4. Wagon Train: One More Performance [18:47]
1. Wyatt Earp: Perfect Memory [11:00]
2. Wyatt Earp: A Clever Plan [5:40]
3. Wyatt Earp: What Brothers Are For [7:43]
1. Sugarfoot: Sentimental Arkansas Fergis [15:20]
2. Sugarfoot: Speaking of the Devil [19:45]
3. Sugarfoot: Shoot'em Both [13:54]
1. Stories of the Century: Son of Cochese [6:52]
2. Stories of the Century: Wagon Train [9:00]
3. Stories of the Century: The Apache Firebrand [10:08]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play
   Chapters
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