I hope "Cheyenne" did well. I actually did notice a couple of purchasers grab copies at my local Best Buy last month, which caught my eye. Hate to be a snoop, but it does intrigue me to see what folks are grabbing, especially in the 'vintage' vein. It was a very nice set; I bought mine the week it came out. I really expected "Maverick" to make the grade first, since of the WB westerns, it's been the one that tended to circulate the most in reruns in the past few decades. The only potential problem with "Maverick" is that its 1st-season leans a bit more toward the serious side, and lacks some of the humor or light-heartedness that became its trademark. I wonder if that would potentially disappoint some purchasers. But, they're still good shows, nonetheless.
One other WB western series I'd particularly like to see released is "Lawman." It's a nice little show, and John Russell cut a fine western form. Another series, "The Dakotas," didn't last long at all, but everyone who remembers it seems to think quite highly of it. I've never seen it myself. But with only about 20 episodes altogether, it seems like it would make a dandy dvd-set.
The Dakotas has a much darker tone than any of the other Warner shows. Far more violent and serious. But a pretty good show. I think it might be the only western besides Colt .45 that hasn't had a run on ALTV in recent years.
Maverick was terrific, but I will only buy it when Warner Bros. comes out with complete season box sets. The early 1980s Bret Maverick series wasn't bad either, particularly the story in which Jack Kelly guest-starred as brother Bart for the last time. In the meantime, I can still watch Garner in The Rockford Files (which I'm looking at now, as I type this).
I didn't care for "Lawman", easily one of the worst Warner Bros. westerns from the late 1950s & early 1960s era. Even the theme song was weak: "Lawman....there was a job to done....."
I think anyone who bought S1 of Cheyenne would want S2. The episodes here revert to 50 min.length & the familiar theme song is introduced. Hopefully we also get Maverick in 2007, James Garner is still popular & of course Roger Moore was in 1 season.Columbia House put out about 50 episodes (mostly Garner) on video a few years back & they looked really nice. Doubt if we will ever see Sugarfoot, Bronco, Lawman , Colt 45. though. Perhaps Warner could put out a compilation box of a few episodes of each, likewise with their private eye shows.
Columbia House put out a lot of GUNSMOKE episodes on VHS too (45 tapes' worth, and I bought 15 of them back in the 90s), but not that many on DVD. At least the first season of The Wild Wild West came out earlier this year. I wonder how CBS Video / Paramount did with that in sales so far?
This is a western I would purchase in a heartbeat, never having seen even a second of it, based solely on the opinions of two very knowledgeable authors of a TV westerns book I have who hold the series in high regard. Also, the show features two character actors I enjoy watching--Jack Elam and Larry Ward.
With Maverick I wish they would put out a set of just James Garner shows. Not interested in Jack Kelly, Roger Moore, or anyone else who tried to play Maverick. Probably not going to be popular with the season sets only crowd.
This would have to be something more than the 3 show sample previously released.
I thought Roger Moore was quite good as cousin Beau Maverick during his one season (and it was Moore's third TV series), but Beau's replacement Robert Colbert (as Brent Maverick) was a little too serious for the show.
I think you do Jack Kelly an injustice.He did a number of solo episodes which were very good.Robert Colbert only did two episodes so never had the chance to develop and the series was running out of steam by the time he debuted.The last season in ehich Kelly rode alone is the weakest but I think he actually was in more episodes than Garner.
Garner left after the 3rd season when he contract was up. The 4th season was Kelly and Moore but then Moore's contract expired before the season was done and that was when Colbert came in for a short time. The 5th season was a mix of repeats and new Kelly episodes.
Regarding the theme songs, the one hallmark of WB shows of that era was that they all had very catchy theme songs. As for the shows themselves, well the best thing I can say is that they are very much of their time. Personally, for TV from that late 50s, early 60s era, I'm more a fan of the shows MGM produced.
It's also worth to note that James Garner filed and WON the first lawsuit against a major studio by a television actor (Warner Bros.) and it was resolved in the middle of the series' fourth season in December 1960. The one episode with Bret in the fourth year was actually filmed for the previous season, but was delayed by ABC.
You can read about that lawsuit and other matters here:
That photo of Garner in old western garb is clearly from 1981 -- a publicity shot for his sequel series "Bret Maverick". That was many years after he made amends with Warner Bros, which by then had undergone many changes in management and studio structure.
James Garner went to court a few times over the years. In 1998, he filed a $2.2 million lawsuit against Universal to recover The Rockford Files syndication profits that he should have received.
I absolutely agree. Having only seen a few MAVERICK episodes in the sixties, and having only a vague memory of "a semi-comedic western show starring James Garner and some other actors", I subscribed to the Columbia House video series simply based on the fact that I always liked James Garner as an actor and to refresh a very, very old and faded memory. (In my country MAVERICK was seen only once in 1968 and never seen or heard of again.) Imagine my surprise when I realized that there was a second actor starring in this show whose acting style was quite different from Garner's but who could nevertheless carry an episode quite as well: Jack Kelly! I had completely forgotten about him, but what a revelation it was to re-discover him. Since Columbia House included only a few of his solo episodes, I even went to the trouble of getting private copies of almost all Kelly episodes from other collectors. Of course, best of all are the episodes that starred both Garner and Kelly. Their acting styles were different, but they complimented each other just beautifully! Needless to say, complete season sets of MAVERICK would be a dream come true for me. WB, what are you waiting for??
So, no final season of F Troop? This is why so many people get turned off to collecting. Imagine if you collected something else, baseball cards for instance. Now when I was a kid Topps released the cards by series throughout the year. They did this up until 1973 I believe. Imagine if they had 7 series, which is the way they usually did it, and stopped halfway through because they weren't happy with the sales. Or for that matter any other collectible item. Start something and don't finish it. There's no way to know for sure as it hasn't really been done but I'd be curious to see if sales figures wouldn't be better if it was known beforehand that the company releasing a show was committed to a full run.