Wanted: GUNSMOKE (CBS/1955-1975)

3 Stars

INTRODUCTION
Well, Rawhide is over now, farewell Gil, Rowdy, Wish, San Anton, Abilene, Sedalia …
so I’m about to switch horses and head to Dodge City (Kansas), to meet Marshal Matt Dillon,
in short, friends, I’m going to review season 11 of Gunsmoke!

GUNSMOKE • SEASON 11 (1965-1966) (32 episodes • 50 mins • b&w)
This… is the last season in black and white and the first season with the updated style (new opening titles, new end titles, new leaning) that is a departure from the format of the 1950’s originators (i.e., producer Norman MacDonnell and music director Herschel Burke Gilbert) paving the way for the decade to come and with less episodes (32 against the previous 36). The men behind that new Gunsmoke are a tandem of producers and the new head of the music department named Morton Stevens who supervises and conducts the majority of scores at CBS. Morton Stevens is known as the music theme creator of the cop series Hawaii Five-O and will contribute to ‘this’ season 11 (two scores: “Seven Hours to Dawn” and “Malachi”) as well as other CBS household names like Fred Steiner, Richard Shores and Harry Geller—the last two are very active on The Wild Wild West—and the legendary Golden Age artist Franz Waxman.

This season sees some interesting directors: Joseph Sargent, Mark Rydell, B-movies Tay Garnett and even actor Peter Graves aka the brother of James Arness or aka IMF agent Jim Phelps. Furthermore, the best director that dominates the season remains Vincent McEveety, the brother of director Bernard McEveety. Meanwhile, another western series ended: Rawhide, during its eighth season. The 1965-1966 interval was a ‘key’ crossroad for television dramas because three monochromatic western series were produced during that short period: GunsmokeRawhideThe Wild Wild West *.

* The pilot was produced early 1965 under the previous regime at CBS and the series failed to be canceled
and had a chaotic initial season with five unstable producers (Michael Garrison, Collier Young, Fred Freiberger,
John Mantley, Gene L. Coon).

PRODUCTION TEAM
producer: Philip Leacock
associate producer: John Mantley
story consultant: Paul Savage
director of photography: Harry Stradling Jr.

British-born producer Philip Leacock partly started on Gunsmoke from season 10 as a second or replacement producer—but in the line of pioneer Norman MacDonnell—and will manage back-to-back seven season 1 episodes of The Wild Wild West during the 1965-1966 time period and later twenty episodes of Cimarron Strip (1967-1968) but as executive producer.

Canadian-born associate producer John Mantley used to be a story consultant during season 10, replace Philip Leacock as producer at the end of that particular season 11 and from season 14 will become a simple executive producer. But while working on Gunsmoke, he achieves seven season 1 episodes of The Wild Wild West as a full-time producer helped by the same Philip Leacock. Find Mantley’s episodes list: “The Night of the Howling Light”, “The Night of the Steel Assassin”, “The Night the Dragon Screamed”, “The Night of the Grand Emir”, “The Night of the Flaming Ghost”, “The Night of the Whirring Death”, “The Night of the Puppeteer”.

Story consultant Paul Savage takes over from episode 21 of season 11 until season 14 but used to be a writer on Gunsmoke from season 8.

Son of the famous Golden Age cinematographer of the same name with a heavy 50 years output, Harry Stradling Jr. partly started during season 10 under the previous regime on Gunsmoke and will quit early season 13 and work later on another CBS western series entitled Cimarron Strip and participate at some big Seventies films like There Was a Crooked Man…Little Big ManThe Man Who Loved Cat DancingBite the Bullet, to name but a few.

CAST OF CHARACTERS
regular cast: James Arness (US Marshal Matthew “Matt” Dillon), Ken Curtis (Marshal assistant “Festus” Haggen), Milburn Stone (“Doc” Adams), Amanda Blake (Miss “Kitty” Russell), Roger Ewing (Deputy Thaddeus “Thad” Greenwood).

supporting cast: Glenn Strange (Bartender “Sam” Noonan), Charles Seel (Telegrapher “Barney” Danches), Hank Patterson (Livery stable owner “Hank”), Howard Culver (Dodge House hotel clerk “Howie”), Rudy Sooter (Bartender and guitar player “Rudy”), Olan Soule (Barber “Bert”), Roy Roberts (Banker Harry Botkin).

A new semi regular pops-up this season named Thad played by Roger Ewing from episode 3 “Clayton Thaddeus Greenwood”—Thad could easily be the nephew of Matt Dillon, by the way.

The strength of season 11 is the colorful guest actors that add weight to the story: see John Anderson, Joe Don Baker, John Drew Barrymore, Neville Brand, Beau Bridges, Jim Davis, Bruce Dern, Jack Elam, James Gregory, Steve Ihnat, Robert Lansing, Gary Lockwood, Darren McGavin, Leonard Nimoy, Simon Oakland, Warren Oates, Nehemiah Persoff, John Saxon, Tom Skerritt, Lee Van Cleef, James Whitmore.

WHY SEASON 11?
“So with the shift to the hour format, Gunsmoke became a quasi-anthology series, with many more episodes built around other characters living or passing through Dodge City.”
—Stuart Galbraith IV

“The switch to the hour format did make room for richer character development and a greater sense of a larger Dodge City community, a bustling populace of three-dimensional characters.”
—Stuart Galbraith IV

THE DVD SETS
The prints are restored and look wonderful and the picture quality highlights the cinematography of
Harry Stradling Jr. It features English subtitles.

Published by

Kevin Collins

administrator

108 Comments

  1. Find the new line of Gunsmoke during season 11.

    1. The New Showdown Main Titles

    Matt Dillon’s handgun and Matt Dillon faces a gunslinger.
    View attachment 54821 View attachment 54822
    Matt Dillon’s face and the first use of the series logo.

    2. The New Opening Titles

    The second use of the series logo.
    View attachment 54823
    View attachment 54824

    The first credits for James Arness.


    3. The New End Titles


    Matt Dillon’s handgun used a background for the producer credits.
    View attachment 54825

    Matt Dillon’s hanged hat used a background for the third use of the series logo.
    View attachment 54826

    Matt Dillon’s hanged hat used a background for the second credits of James Arness.
    View attachment 54827

    Matt Dillon’s office winchesters used a background for the associate producer credits.
    View attachment 54828

    Matt Dillon’s office winchesters used a background for the cinematographer credits.
    View attachment 54829

  2. ClassicTVMan1981X

    And why season 11? It's the final season of the series to be telecast in monochrome.

    ~Ben

    Why season 11?
    It makes a good transition from Rawhide to Gunsmoke: both produced during the 1965-1966 interval.

  3. JohnHopper

    Find the new line of Gunsmoke during season 11.

    1. The New Showdown Main Titles

    Matt Dillon’s handgun and Matt Dillon faces a gunslinger.
    View attachment 54821 View attachment 54822
    Matt Dillon’s face and the first use of the series logo.

    2. The New Opening Titles

    The second use of the series logo.
    View attachment 54823
    View attachment 54824

    The first credits for James Arness.


    3. The New End Titles


    Matt Dillon’s handgun used a background for the producer credits.
    View attachment 54825

    Matt Dillon’s hanged hat used a background for the third use of the series logo.
    View attachment 54826

    Matt Dillon’s hanged hat used a background for the second credits of James Arness.
    View attachment 54827

    Matt Dillon’s office winchesters used a background for the associate producer credits.
    View attachment 54828

    Matt Dillon’s office winchesters used a background for the cinematographer credits.
    View attachment 54829

    Another marvelous example of CBS' remastering– looks splendid on DVD!

  4. I just remember how in the 1980s, finding episodes of the black and white hours was a big deal. There were 2 syndication packages, the 6 seasons of half hours and the color hours, and the black and white hours were not available. I believe that Encore Westerns was the first time they had aired since their original CBS run.

  5. Neil Brock

    I just remember how in the 1980s, finding episodes of the black and white hours was a big deal. There were 2 syndication packages, the 6 seasons of half hours and the color hours, and the black and white hours were not available. I believe that Encore Westerns was the first time they had aired since their original CBS run.

    Actually, when CBN had its Saturday afternoon western line-up, they did run the hour-long b&w "Gunsmoke" in 1986-87. But I don't think they got too far along into them, airing one episode per week. It might have just been the 1961-63 seasons that got shown. I'm not sure. I taped a few of them, back then. Prints were decent, but looked a bit 16mm-ish as I recall. Not as good as the Encore Westerns prints.

  6. Bert Greene

    Actually, when CBN had its Saturday afternoon western line-up, they did run the hour-long b&w "Gunsmoke" in 1986-87. But I don't think they got too far along into them, airing one episode per week. It might have just been the 1961-63 seasons that got shown. I'm not sure. I taped a few of them, back then. Prints were decent, but looked a bit 16mm-ish as I recall. Not as good as the Encore Westerns prints.

    The CBN run was selected episodes from each of the b/w one-hour seasons. The did use 16mm prints, but the shows were cut to about 46:30.

  7. bmasters9

    Those cards are more vintage television history right there, especially being remastered and looking as sharp as they are!

    The same cards appear in the first and monochrome season of The Wild Wild West.

  8. JohnHopper

    The same cards appear in the first and monochrome season of The Wild Wild West.

    The last one also appeared on episode 1 of Hogan's Heroes, as well as on…
    The Millionaire
    The Honeymooners
    The Twilight Zone
    (1959 TV series)
    Seasons 1-5 of The Andy Griffith Show
    The Dick Van Dyke Show

    Seasons 1-3 of The Beverly Hillbillies
    Seasons 1-2 of Petticoat Junction
    Season 1 of Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.

    ~Ben

  9. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #1
    “Seven Hours to Dawn”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Morton Stevens
    guests: John Drew Barrymore, Michael Vandever, Al Lettieri, Allen Jaffe, Morgan Woodward, Jerry Douglas, Johnny Seven

    “Don’t touch those guns, Marshal. If you do, I’m gonna have to open up the other world for you”.
    —Mace Gore (actor John Drew Barrymore)

    During a whole night, Dodge City is taken over by an army of robbers dressed as cow punchers and acting as putschists led by Mace Gore (actor John Drew Barrymore) who isolates and blocks the town and confiscates all guns. They order the population to give them their valuables: silver, money, jewelry, wedding rings. The headquarters of the robbers is at the Long Branch—the saloon of Miss Kitty—where they count the loot and store the weapons. But the robbers let their impulses loose like mad dogs and abuse people and in the course of the actions, they even gun down Marshal Dillon! In order to keep the gang in Dodge for the army to pick them up, Festus creates a phony story of a gold shipment coming from the train.

    It’s a strong season opener and a tough military coup-like episode in which murdering outlaws rob the population of Dodge City: a must-watch that is served by the low-key cinematography. The dark music score by Morton Stevens reinforces the martial nature of the criminals’ MO. The cast of bandit characters (Michael Vandever as Raider, Al Lettieri as Smitty, Morgan Woodward as Deeks, Jerry Douglas as Clark, Johnny Sevens as Barens) is really good and especially, John Drew Barrymore as leader Mace Gore. Miss Kitty fails to be raped by bandit Barens and Matt Dillon fails to be beaten up by a bunch of dark alley rapers. After the shooting of Matt Dillon, the townspeople are frozen as statues in the middle of the street. Both writer Clyde Ware and director Vincent McEveety work on Rawhide during its season 7.

    Actor John Drew Barrymore returns from the season 10 “One Killer on Ice” and also work on Rawhide during season 1 (“Incident of the Haunted Hills”), season 7 (“Corporal Dasovik”) and season 8 (“Ride a Crooked Mile”) and on the first season (“The Night of the Double-Edged Knife”) of The Wild Wild West. Actor Morgan Woodward returns from the season 3 “Potato Road”, Johnny Seven from the season 7 “Nina’s Revenge”, Allen Jaffe from the season 10 “Winner Take All”. Actor Al Lettieri appears in one season 7 episode (“The Meeting”) of Rawhide dealing with gangsters.

    Absolutely recommended! For the friends of Sam Peckinpah’s films!

    Mace Gore and his two henchmen threaten Matt Dillon.
    View attachment 54912
    Mace Gore and his two henchmen inside the marshal’s office.
    View attachment 54913
    Mace Gore and his two henchmen fire to warn his men and to corner Matt Dillon.
    View attachment 54914
    End credits for CBS composer Morton Stevens.
    View attachment 54915

  10. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #2
    “The Storm”
    written by Paul Savage
    directed by Joseph Sargent
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Forrest Tucker, Willard Sage, Tim McIntire, Richard Evans, Kelly Thordsen, Stuart Margolin

    Two youngsters named Ab (actor Richard Evans) and Claude (actor Tim McIntire) from a farmer family kill a drunk buff hides trader named Cantwell (actor Willard Sage) in a back alley and one innocent named Woodley (actor Kelly Thordsen) is sentenced to death instead. One of the two young men feel guilty and sinks his conscience into whiskey and provokes a saloon customer that guns him down cold and makes his final confession. Matt Dillon goes picks up the other brother at the home of his friend (actor Forrest Tucker) during a storm. But things take another turn …

    It’s a decent Film Noir and family drama about a murder at night that degenerates that is supported by the tense score of Leon Klatzkin. Matt Dillon is again wounded. Don’t miss Festus performing a song at the saloon The Long Branch, accompanied by the bartender Rudy (actor Rudy Sooter) at the guitar who is a real country music musician, by the way. Composer Leon Klatzkin previously worked on Rawhide (season 5 and 6) and will let one onscreen credits during one third season episode (“The Night of the Falcon”) of The Wild Wild West which will happen to be just stock music.

    Actor Forrest Tucker returns from the season 10 “Double Entry”, Willard Sage from the season 10 “Chief Joseph” and Kelly Thordsen from the season 3 “Mavis McCloud”.

    End credits for CBS composer Leon Klatzkin.
    View attachment 54929

  11. Jeff Flugel

    Thanks for introducing me to a new word, John – putschist. Had to look that one up…That first episode reviewed above sounds like a good one.

    “Seven Hours to Dawn” is the first of the two masterpieces of season 11. It's a must-watch.

  12. JohnHopper

    “Seven Hours to Dawn” is the first of the two masterpieces of season 11. It's a must-watch.

    To give you an idea about the (wild) leaning of season 11, the first sentence that the guest character say is:
    “Don’t touch those guns, Marshal. If you do, I’m gonna have to open up the other world for you”.
    —Mace Gore (actor John Drew Barrymore)

  13. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #3
    “Clayton Thaddeus Greenwood”
    written by Calvin Clements, Sr.
    directed by Joseph Sargent
    music by Richard Shores
    guests: Jack Elam, Sherwood Price, Robert Sorrells, Allen Jeffe, Paul Fix, Roger Ewing

    Four wild drovers led by Sam Band (actor Jack Elam) terrorize owner of a general store John Greenwood (actor Paul Fix) working as a sheriff and his son Thaddeus (actor Roger Ewing) working as a deputy for a very small town in Oklahoma that Sam Band humiliates and calls “plowboy”. Thad goes after the four drovers and meets Matt Dillon and Festus. His father has a stroke and dies. Thad heads to The Long Branch at Dodge City, Kansas. Unable to pick them up in that state, he keeps on watching them in a silent way as an ironic harbinger of death and wait for … The drovers are crooked and simulate a wolf threat issue thanks to three German shepherds.

    It’s a nice revengist drama and a good introduction to the character of Thad who is eventually hired by Matt Dillon but the sherry on top is the performance of actor Jack Elam as the nasty heavy. The four drovers are played by Jack Elam, Sherwood Price, Robert Sorrells, Allen Jeffe. Don’t miss the fight scene between Thad and the drovers at Delmonico’s accompanied by Richard Shores’ vivid music. Two bartenders play music at the Long Branch: Sam at the fiddle and Rudy at the guitar. After Morton Stevens, this is the second composer working on The Wild Wild West but also lets two scores on Rawhide. For the record, Shores will write music during the four seasons of The Wild Wild West.

    Actor Jack Elam is a recurring guest on Gunsmoke and returns from the season 10 “Help Me, Kitty” and appears on both Rawhide and The Wild Wild West (see the season 3 “The Night of Montezuma’s Hordes”). Actor Roger Ewing returns from the season 10 “Song for Dying” as a different character, Allen Jeffe from this season “Seven Hours to Dawn”, Paul Fix from the season 9 “The Other Half”, Robert Sorrells from the season 10 “Breckinridge”.

    End credits for CBS composer Richard Shores.
    View attachment 54999

  14. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #4
    “Ten Little Indians”
    written by George Eckstein
    directed by Mark Rydell
    music by Fred Steiner
    guests: Nehemiah Persoff, Rafael Campos, Zalman King, Bruce Dern, Warren Oates, John Marley, Nina Roman, Stanja Lowe, Don Ross

    Out of the blue, Matt Dillon faces individually five gunslingers (Miguel Samando, Billy Coe, Doyle Phleger, Al Tresh, Jack Pinto) who try to kill him for $25,000, including an old friend and a retired sheriff. But things are not what they appear to be … It’s a frame to eliminate five guilty men out of ten conceived by a ruined and revengist rancher named Ben Pringle (actor John Marley).

    It’s a good gunfighters episode thanks to director Mark Rydell and a singular twisted rework of Agatha Christie’s novel Ten Little Indians adapted to the series mold—two years later, the plot was redone in the episode “The Superlative Seven” from the British espionage series The Avengers. The ensemble of actors’ performances are very good: the picturesque professional hired guns (Bruce Dern as Doyle Phleger, Warren Oates as Al Tresh), the rancher acting as a sneaky observer (John Marley as Ben Pringle) and the two-faced former sheriff (Nehemiah Persoff as Jack Pinto). The sherry on top is to witness Festus and Al Tresh having fun at the Long Branch! The cue that highlights the final showdown is written like “King Nine Will Not Return” from The Twilight Zone. After Morton Stevens and Richard Shores, find the third composer working on The Wild Wild West (see the season 3 “The Night of the Undead”) but also participated at Rawhide.

    This is the first part of both actors Nehemiah Persoff and Bruce Dern on Gunsmoke and Persoff guests in both Rawhide and The Wild Wild West. Actor Warren Oates is a recurring guest on the show and returns from the season 10 “Circus Trick”.

    End credits for CBS composer Fred Steiner.
    View attachment 55047

  15. On the whole, Disc 1 highlights good episodes including the first masterpiece "Seven Hours to Dawn".
    Next week, I will explore Disc 2 of Gunsmoke season 11. So stay tuned for more!

    PS: Season 11 is a genuinely good season.

  16. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #2
    “The Storm”
    written by Paul Savage
    directed by Joseph Sargent
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Forrest Tucker, Willard Sage, Tim McIntire, Richard Evans, Kelly Thordsen, Stuart Margolin

    Two youngsters named Ab (actor Richard Evans) and Claude (actor Tim McIntire) from a farmer family kill a drunk buff hides trader named Cantwell (actor Willard Sage) in a back alley and one innocent named Woodley (actor Kelly Thordsen) is sentenced to death instead. One of the two young men feel guilty and sinks his conscience into whiskey and provokes a saloon customer that guns him down cold and makes his final confession. Matt Dillon goes picks up the other brother at the home of his friend (actor Forrest Tucker) during a storm. But things take another turn …

    It’s a decent Film Noir and family drama about a murder at night that degenerates that is supported by the tense score of Leon Klatzkin. Matt Dillon is again wounded. Don’t miss Festus performing a song at the saloon The Long Branch, accompanied by the bartender Rudy (actor Rudy Sooter) at the guitar who is a real country music musician, by the way. Composer Leon Klatzkin previously worked on Rawhide (season 5 and 6) and will let one onscreen credits during one third season episode (“The Night of the Falcon”) of The Wild Wild West which will happen to be just stock music.

    Actor Forrest Tucker returns from the season 10 “Double Entry”, Willard Sage from the season 10 “Chief Joseph” and Kelly Thordsen from the season 3 “Mavis McCloud”.

    Festus performs a song at The Long Branch, accompanied by bartender Rudy at the guitar.
    View attachment 55095 View attachment 55096 View attachment 55097 View attachment 55098

  17. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #5
    “Taps for Old Jeb”
    written by Les Crutchfield
    directed by James Sheldon
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Ed Begley, Wayne Rogers, Morgan Woodward, Arthur Batanides, Don Keefer

    At night and at his camp, an old excentric gold prospector named Jeb Crater (actor Ed Begley) supported by his partner Sholo (actor Morgan Woodward) hire a stranger named Stretch Morgan (actor Wayne Rogers) to be their bodyguard. Arriving at Dodge City, Jeb organizes a big party at the Long Branch to celebrate his richness. The next day, Sholo complains at the marshal’s office that Jeb might be dead but actually he was clubbed from behind. Morgan is suspected. But things are not what it appears to be …

    It’s an absurb con game episode with a twist and features Thad who meets his cousin: Stretch Morgan. The episode should be re-titled “Fool’s Gold”. The character of Doc performs a song during Jeb’s party accompanied by bartender Rudy playing guitar and Sam at the fiddle.

    Actor Morgan Woodward returns from “Seven Hours to Dawn” and Wayne Rogers from the season 7 “Cody’s Code”.

  18. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #6
    “Kioga”
    written by Robert Lewin
    directed by Harry Harris
    music by Lyn Murray
    guests: Neville Brand, Roy Roberts, John Hubbard, Hank Patterson, Ken Renard, Howard Culver, John War Eagle, Teno Pollick, Catherine Wyles

    Furs trader McCaw (actor Neville Brand) shoots down two Indians after having a lunch with them and heads to Dodge City but one of the victims named Kioga (actor Teno Pollick) is still alive and tracks him down to Dodge to avenge the death of his relative.

    It’s a decent little revenge drama. The story is served by a beautiful low key photography. Composer Lyn Murray’s score includes nice hapsichord passages for the character of Kioga—Murray used to work on Rawhide. Thad is absent.

  19. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #7
    “The Bounty Hunter”
    written by Paul Savage
    directed by Harry Harris
    guests: Robert Lansing, Burt Freed, Wright King, Lisabeth Hush, James Anderson

    Bounty Hunter Luke Frazer (actor Robert Lansing) posing as Turner accepts a $600 contract that includes 10,000 acres of land from rancher Thornton (actor Burt Freed) wishing to avenge his young son and picking up Otto Fry (actor Wright King) that changes his name to Lon Jensen. Frazer stops at Dodge City and tracks Fry down. Matt Dillon covers and warns Jensen. But later on, we learn that Thornton didn’t tell the whole truth about the events of his son’s death. Things take another turn…

    It’s a dual family affair (Thornton and Jensen’s), a marital dilemma, a good existential drama disguised as a bounty hunter intrigue. Actor Robert Lansing’s performance is impeccable and makes this entry exciting. Don’t miss the intense fight scene between diehard Frazer and his shady client Thornton at the ranch and its wild aftermaths. Festus knows Luke Frazer from way back. During the bath scene, we learn about the true motivations of Frazer. As in most series, the bounty hunter is considered as a harbinger of death and people refuse to cooperate with him. Thad is absent. Actor Wright King looks like Henry Fonda in this episode because he talks and behaves as him in his western feature films: see John Ford’s My Darling Clementine. The majority of the stock music comes from Leon Klatzkin’s “The Storm” and sustains the edgy and tense atmosphere of the drama.

    Actor Wright King returns from the season 9 “No Hands” and Bert Freed from the season 4 “The F.U.”.

    Recommended!

  20. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #8
    “The Reward”
    written by Gilbert Ralston, Scott Hunt, Beth Keele
    directed by Marc Daniels
    guests: James Whitmore, David Ladd, Fred J. Scollay, Peter Whitney, Gilman Rankin

    Returning home at Dodge City after a prison sentence for gold swindling, Jim Forbes (actor James Whitmore) joins his son Brian (actor David Ladd) back and wants to prove to the townspeople that there’s gold in his mine. The gang of Clint Fisher (actor Fred J. Scollay) and Jason Holt (actor Peter Whitney) keep on provoking Forbes. The gang lets their impulses loose at The Long Branch while torturing Forbes at his mine to make him pay his debt.

    It’s a rough family drama about the themes of ostracism and redemption. Actor James Whitmore is good as usual.
    Director Marc Daniels has a good sense of composition: see the high angle shot arrival scene of Forbes intercut
    with close wide angle shots. Thad is absent.

    Actor James Whitmore returns from the season 10 “Dry Road to Nowhere”.

  21. JohnHopper

    I hope you enjoy this trip to Dodge City.
    Next week, folks, it's disc 3 with these episodes: “Malachi”, “The Pretender”, “South Wind”, “The Hostage”.
    So stay tuned for more Matt Dillon's adventures!

    For Kolchak aficionados, don't miss the Friday entry entitled “The Hostage”. And it's recommended!
    Note that in your calendar.

  22. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #9
    “Malachi”
    written by William Putman
    directed by Gary Nelson
    music by Morton Stevens
    guests: Jack Elam, Harry Townes, Edward Andrews, Robert Sorrells, Rex Holman

    In Mexico, outlaw Del Ordman (actor Jack Elam) shoots down a member of his gang named Shobin (actor Rex Holman) who let kill his brother and, later on, at night, and in a clearing, an old horse merchant while bones trader and whiskey addict Malachi Harper (actor Harry Townes) receives a letter from his rich brother Ethan (actor Edward Andrews) announcing his coming. Malachi is obliged to pose as Dodge City’s marshal and asks the help of Festus, Doc and Miss Kitty to stage a simulacrum but Del Ordman pops-up and wants to kill the man who shot down his brother: the marshal. Later on, Matt Dillon returns home. Dodge City has two marshals now!

    It’s a fun light dual story episode that is served by a good guest cast: Jack Elam, Harry Townes, Edward Andrews. In a way, it plays like a spoof of John Ford’s The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. Matt Dillon leaves Dodge at the start of Act 1. Thad is absent. This is the second score of CBS music head Morton Stevens after “Seven Hours to Dawn”.

    Actor Harry Townes returns from the season 10 “Two Tall Men” and both actor Jack Elam and Robert Sorrells from this season “Clayton Thaddeus Greenwood”.

  23. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #10
    “The Pretender”
    written by Calvin Clements, Sr.
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Tom Simcox, Tom Skerritt, Julie Sommars, Nehemia Persoff, Harry Davis, Gregg Palmer

    Ex-convict Edmund Dano (actor Tom Skerritt) and his elder brother Frank (actor Tom Simcox) return home to the farm of their parents and attend the official party at Dodge City when sheriff Jackson (actor Gregg Palmer) from Garden City questions Frank for the charge of robbing the stage’s cashbox. Both sons try to get a second chance but they keep on fighting each other and therefore their mother has a stroke. At night and with the help of a female insider (actress Julie Sommars) that he seduced, Edmund rob the money of the Freight Express head Mr. Daniels (actor Harry Davis) who gets shot.

    It’s a conflictual and existential Italian American family drama about the two sons of the Dano’s mixed up in a past dirty business and tackles the theme of fate and redemption: it’s also a pathos-filled story. The basic plot of the sons’ dilemma will be redone in the season 1 episode “Bitter Wine” with a Greek American family (also guest staring Nehemia Persoff playing again an angry father) from QM’s series The Street of San Francisco. The cast of the male characters is good: Tom Simcox, Tom Skerritt, Nehemia Persoff. Doc acts as a master of ceremony and performs a song at the Dodge City party accompanied by three musicians and among them, Sam and Rudy. Thad is present.

    Actor Nehemia Persoff returns from this season “Ten Little Indians”.

  24. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #11
    “South Wind”
    written by Jack Bartlett
    directed by Allen Reisner
    music by Tommy Morgan
    guests: Bruce Dern, Pat Cardi, Robert Random, Michael Witney, Ryan Hayes, Michael Davis, Gregg Palmer

    Walking on a hill, a boy named Homer Bonney (actor Pat Cardi) witnesses the killing of his father from the rear by Judd Print (actor Bruce Dern), the father of a traveller’s family enroute to Colorado. Homer hides from danger and runs with a pistol when he meets Doc Adams that saves him from hunger. The Print’s stop at Dodge City to get their wagon’s wheel fixed by the blacksmith. Homer eventually faces Judd Print in the lively stable.

    It’s a brutal family drama centered around an avenging kid and that story is the companion piece to this season “Kioga”. As in “The Bounty Hunter”, Doc rides his buggy on a country road and discovers a wounded person. The vicious performance of Bruce Dern is inspired.

    Actor Bruce Dern returns from this season “Ten Little Indians” and actor Gregg Palmer from “The Pretender”.

    End credits for CBS composer Tommy Morgan.
    View attachment 55513

  25. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #11
    “South Wind”
    written by Jack Bartlett
    directed by Allen Reisner
    music by Tommy Morgan
    guests: Bruce Dern, Pat Cardi, Robert Random, Michael Witney, Ryan Hayes, Michael Davis, Gregg Palmer

    Walking on a hill, a boy named Homer Bonney (actor Pat Cardi) witnesses the killing of his father from the rear by Judd Print (actor Bruce Dern), the father of a traveller’s family enroute to Colorado. Homer hides from danger and runs with a pistol when he meets Doc Adams that saves him from hunger. The Print’s stop at Dodge City to get their wagon’s wheel fixed by the blacksmith. Homer eventually faces Judd Print in the lively stable.

    It’s a brutal family drama centered around an avenging kid and that story is the companion piece to this season “Kioga”. As in “The Bounty Hunter”, Doc rides his buggy on a country road and discovers a wounded person. The vicious performance of Bruce Dern is inspired.

    Actor Bruce Dern returns from this season “Ten Little Indians” and actor Gregg Palmer from “The Pretender”.

    End credits for CBS composer Tommy Morgan.
    View attachment 55513

    Tommy Morgan was a very prolific harmonica player, having lent his instrument to many popular songs and TV show theme tunes over the years.

    ~Ben

  26. JohnHopper

    For Kolchak aficionados, don't miss the Friday entry entitled “The Hostage”. And it's recommended!
    Note that in your calendar.

    Tomorrow's the big day, Carl Kolchak and Tony Vincenzo meet Matt Dillon!
    Be warned! Be there! The heavies will take over!

  27. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #12
    “The Hostage”
    written by Clyde Ware
    story by Joe Ann Johnson
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Harry Geller
    guests: Darren McGavin, Simon Oakland, Tom Reese, Vito Scotti, Willis Bouchey, I. Stanford Jolley

    Four escaped convicts led by hardened criminal Lon Gorman (actor Darren McGavin) beat up and abduct Matt Dillon in order to use it as a shield to cross the Mexican border. Thad and Festus go after them to free Dillon. We learn later that Lon Gorman is actually innocent of the past murder charge and is on his way to kill the sadist who send him to prison and break his voice. Unfortunately, Thad and Festus end up in jail for breaking the law.

    After “Seven Hours to Dawn”, it’s another good episode in which Matt Dillon is hurt pretty bad by the outlaws done by the tandem of writer Clyde Ware and director Vincent McEveety. Above all, it’s a revengist plot. Thad is present. Actor McGavin talks with a broken voice. How odd that both McGavin and Oakland will end up in the same series (Kolchak: The Night Stalker) in the next decade and here the social position is reversed because McGavin orders Oakland playing a stubborn cut throat. For the record, director Vincent McEveety will manage one episode of Kolchak: The Night Stalker entitled “The Knightly Murders”. After Morton Stevens and Richard Shores and Fred Steiner, find the fourth composer working on The Wild Wild West but also participated at Rawhide.

    Actor Darren McGavin returns from the season 10 “Twenty Miles from Dodge” and Simon Oakland from the season 5 “Miguel’s Daughter” and appears on both Rawhide (see the season 6 “Incident of the Travellin’ Man” and the season 8 “Encounter at Boot Hill”) and The Wild Wild West (see the season 4 “The Night of the Fugitives”).

    Recommended!

    End credits for CBS composer Harry Geller.
    View attachment 55541

  28. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #12
    “The Hostage”
    written by Clyde Ware
    story by Joe Ann Johnson
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Harry Geller
    guests: Darren McGavin, Simon Oakland, Tom Reese, Vito Scotti, Willis Bouchey, I. Stanford Jolley

    Four escaped convicts led by hardened criminal Lon Gorman (actor Darren McGavin) beat up and abduct Matt Dillon in order to use it as a shield to cross the Mexican border. Thad and Festus go after them to free Dillon. We learn later that Lon Gorman is actually innocent of the past murder charge and is on his way to kill the sadist who send him to prison and break his voice. Unfortunately, Thad and Festus end up in jail for breaking the law.

    After “Seven Hours to Dawn”, it’s another good episode in which Matt Dillon is hurt pretty bad by the outlaws done by the tandem of writer Clyde Ware and director Vincent McEveety. Above all, it’s a revengist plot. Thad is present. Actor McGavin talks with a broken voice. How odd that both McGavin and Oakland will end up in the same series (Kolchak: The Night Stalker) in the next decade and here the social position is reversed because McGavin orders Oakland playing a stubborn cut throat. For the record, director Vincent McEveety will manage one episode of Kolchak: The Night Stalker entitled “The Knightly Murders”. After Morton Stevens and Richard Shores and Fred Steiner, find the fourth composer working on The Wild Wild West but also participated at Rawhide.

    Actor Darren McGavin returns from the season 10 “Twenty Miles from Dodge” and Simon Oakland from the season 5 “Miguel’s Daughter” and appears on both Rawhide (see the season 6 “Incident of the Travellin’ Man” and the season 8 “Encounter at Boot Hill”) and The Wild Wild West (see the season 4 “The Night of the Fugitives”).

    Recommended!

    End credits for CBS composer Harry Geller.
    View attachment 55541

    Darren McGavin as Lon Gorman and Simon Oakland as Carl Mandee.
    View attachment 55542 View attachment 55543 View attachment 55544 View attachment 55545

  29. The late actor Morgan Woodward appeared in 19 episode from Gunsmoke and was typecasted as a heavy.

    "Matt Dillon Must Die" (1974) … Abraham Wakefield
    "A Game of Death… An Act of Love: Part 2" (1973) … Bear Sanderson
    "A Game of Death… An Act of Love: Part 1" (1973) … Bear Sanderson
    "The Sodbusters" (1972) … Lamoor Underwood
    "The Wedding" (1972) … Walt Clayton
    "Luke" (1970) … Luke Dangerfield
    "Hackett" (1970) … Quentin Sargent
    "Stryker" (1969) … Josh Stryker
    "Lobo" (1968) … Luke Brazo
    "Lyle's Kid" (1968) … Grant Lyle
    "Death Train" (1967) … Harl Townsend
    "Vengeance: Part 2" (1967) … Zack Johnson
    "Vengeance: Part 1" (1967) … Zack Johnson
    "The Hanging" (1966) … Beaumont
    "Whispering Tree" (1966) … Earl Miller
    "The Good People" (1966) … Ben Rucker
    "Taps for Old Jeb" (1965) … Sholo
    "Seven Hours to Dawn" (1965) … Deeks
    "Potato Road" (1957) … Calhoun​
  30. Hold It!
    View attachment 55614

    Morgan Woodward's GUNSMOKE count is 20, if we count the TV Movie, GUNSMOKE: To The Last Man-1992.
    View attachment 55615
    Remember him best as, Shotgun Gibbs on THE LIFE AND LEGEND OF WYATT EARP.
    View attachment 55616
    With Wyatt:
    View attachment 55617
    With Roscoe:View attachment 55618
    View attachment 55619

    Watching Gunsmoke, playing on MeTV, it seemed like every other episode guest starred Morgan Woodward or Victor French. French guested 18 times.
    View attachment 55620

    I wonder what female guest star appeared the most?

  31. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #13
    “Outlaw’s Woman”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Mark Rydell
    music by Harry Geller
    guests: Lonny Chapman, Lou Antonio, Lane Bradbury, Vincent Beck, Gene Tyburn, Ted Jordan, Peggy Rea

    Six wild robbers led by Dove Bailey (actor Lonny Chapman) ride fast to escape from two posses of lawmen. Matt Dillon fires his winchester and hits a young woman named Allie Sommers (actress Lane Bradbury) in the shoulder when her brother Eddie (actor Gene Tyburn) leaves her and joins back his gang but Hank Wheeler (actor Ted Jordan), one of the men, guns him down by accident. Bailey orders Harve Kane (actor Lou Antonio) to track Allie Sommers down to get the loot of $20,000. Allie Sommers ends up at Doc’s office in Dodge City. Later on, Harve Kane resumes to town and conditions Allies to make her believe that Matt Dillon kills her brother.

    It’s a good runaway outlaws episode written by gifted Clyde Ware and directed by feature film auteur Mark Rydell (see The Fox, The Reivers, The Cowboys, Cinderella Liberty). The tandem of Clyde Ware and Mark Rydell work together during season 10: see “Chief Joseph” and “Twenty Miles from Dodge”. The doctor’s office scenes with actress Lane Bradbury as the untamed Allie Sommers are well-shot. The cast of criminal characters is very good: Lonny Chapman, Vincent Beck, Lou Antonio. Thad is present. Bartender Rudy (actor Rudy Sooter) of The Long Branch sings a song and plays the guitar outside of the establishment.

    Actor Ted Jordan returns from the season 10 “The Pariah” and Lonny Chapman from the season 8 “Tell Chester”.

  32. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #14
    “The Avengers”
    written by Donn Mullally
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    guests: James Gregory, John Saxon, Les Brown, Jr.

    Dodge City is without marshal. At night, Thad and Festus keep up the shop when Miss Kitty gets abused by a stranger in her saloon’s bedroom. In self defense, Festus guns the man down. The next day, Matt Dillon is back and we learn the identity of the stranger from his tombstone: (drover) Richard Strom. The family of the deceased one comes to town to avenge his murderer and the father working as a judge (actor James Gregory) investigates and asserts false truth about the events of the deed. Matt is forced to send them away. In retaliation, Matt receives a bullet in the leg and both Festus and Kitty are abducted at night. The next day, a posse led by wounded Matt, Thad and Sam is launched. Festus and Kitty are sentenced to be hanged!

    It’s a good dark episode about bias justice served by the expressive and atmospheric film-making of Vincent McEveety, supported by the ominous stock music culled from Morton Stevens’ “Seven Hours to Dawn” and Franz Waxman’s “The Raid” and the guest actors playing the Strom’s: James Gregory, John Saxon, Les Brown, Jr. Thad is present. Matt Dillon and Miss Kitty get hurt as in “Seven Hours to Dawn”.

    Actor James Gregory returns from the season 10 “The New Society” and John Saxon from “Dry Road to Nowhere”.

  33. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #15
    “Gold Mine”
    written by Scott Hunt and Beth Keele
    directed by Abner Biberman
    guests: John Anderson, Paul Carr, Michael Vandever, Tom Nardini, Argentina Brunetti, Dort Clark, John Harmon, Russ Bender

    Miss Kitty travels to the hostile small town of Pickaxe “loaded with every low-down renegade west of the Mississippi”. Matt Dillon worries a lot and orders Thad to go protect Miss Kitty until she achieves the transfer of her gold mine title and keeps him inform by letter. Miss Kitty meets the unbridled Gibbijohns who refuses to give her the gold mine. Without any news from Thad, Matt Dillon rides to Pickaxe to straighten things out.

    It’s a light solo Miss Kitty adventure in which she teams up with Thad and a mute young man named Richard Danby (actor Tom Nardini) from Pickaxe. Miss Kitty faces male predators, a lousy hotel room and a family of wild gold miners played by actors John Anderson, Paul Carr, Michael Vandever. The mine location is the same as in “The Reward”. At the start of the prologue, it features a cue from Hugo Friedhoher’s “Six Weeks to Bent Fork” from Rawhide (season 8).

    Actor Michael Vandever returns from this season “Seven Hours to Dawn”, John Anderson from the season 8 “The Cousin” and Paul Carr from the season 7 “The Squaw”.

  34. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #16
    “Death Watch”
    written by Calvin Clements, Sr.
    directed by Mark Rydell
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Albert Salmi, Willard Sage, Frank Silvera, Richard Evans, Alfred Ryder, Patricia Quinn, Charles Wagenheim, Robert Foulk, Karl Lukas, Steve Gravers

    It’s the hot season in Kansas. Two sleazy bounty hunters (actors Albert Salmi and Willard Sage) find the injured body of wanted Mexican bandit named John Drago (actor Frank Silvera), bring him back to Dodge City to treat him and plan to ride with him to the Mex border to get the big reward of $30,000 in gold. Meanwhile young farmer Austin Boyle (actor Richard Evans) is anxious that his wife gets her baby and becomes the replacement deputy. A reporter named George Flint (actor Alfred Ryder), from the Kansas City Beacon, manipulates the two bounty hunters so that they sell shares of their criminal as in the stock market and bribe the poor farmer to simulate the escape of the criminal.

    It’s a good cynical dual story linked by the destiny of a young and frail farmer and well-served by the ominous score by Leon Klatzkin and, above all, the film-making of Mark Rydell that gives a colorful painting of the guest characters: the two groups of bounty hunters, the crazy criminal, the young troubled man. Two scenes shine: the moral dilemma of Austin Boyle trying to gun down John Drago and the insane outcome. Thad is present and work as a night watchman at Doc’s office.

    Actor Richard Evans and Willard Sage return from this season “The Storm” and Alfred Ryder from the season 4 “Passive Resistance”. Actor Frank Silvera works on both Rawhide (see the season 7 “El Hombre Bravo”) and The Wild Wild West (see the season 3 “The Night of the Jack O’Diamonds”).

    Recommended for the aficionados of the gritty old west!

  35. Next week, folks, it's disc 5 with these episodes: “Sweet Billy, Singer of Songs”, “The Raid, Part I”, “The Raid, Part II”, “Killer at Large”.
    “The Raid" is the main reason why I purchased season 11: a reference episode.
    So stay tuned for more Matt Dillon's adventures!

  36. bmasters9

    Sort of like "V For Vashon" on O-R Jack Lord Five-O, or "A House Divided" on O-R CBS Dallas?

    Let's say it's the quality equivalent of “Eye of the Beholder” for TZ or “The Things of Forms Unknown” for TOL.

  37. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #17
    “Sweet Billy, Singer of Songs”
    written by Gustave Field
    directed by Alvin Ganzer
    music by Richard Shores
    guests: Robert Random, Brooke Bundy, Shug Fisher, Royal Dano, Slim Pickens, Diane Ladd, Judy Carne, Alice Backes

    Festus is obliged to find a bride for his young nephew Sweet Billy (actor Robert Random) who looks for a literate person and introduces him to two women and it fails. A young woman named Orabelle Beal (actress Brooke Bundy) has a soft spot on Billy but her father Pony (actor Slim Pickens) asks $500 to give his daughter. Festus now need to find some money and creates a company called The Haggen Hauling and Freighting Corporation but the father tries to con him.

    It’s a light Festus entry that plays like Gunsmoke meet The Beverly Hillbillies. The Haggen clan consists of three actors: Royal Dano, Shug Fisher, Robert Random. Thad is present. The comical score of Richard Shores underlines the nature of the Haggen clan and the chase scene between the Haggens and Pony Beal is typical.

    Actor Slim Pickens returns from the season 9 “Once a Haggen”, Brooke Bundy from the season 9 “The Magician”, Royal Dano from the season 10 “Deputy Festus”, Shug Fisher from this season “The Storm”, Robert Random from this season “South Wind”.

  38. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #18
    “The Raid, Part I”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Franz Waxman
    guests: John Anderson, Gary Lockwood, Jeremy Slate, Jim Davis, Michael Conrad, Richard Jaeckel, John Kellogg, Ted Jordan, Preston Pierce, Dee Pollock, Edmund Hashim, Roy Engel, Percy Helton, Tony Haig

    “Violence has never been part of my nature”.
    —Mastermind Les McConnell (actor John Anderson).

    Sedalia, Missouri, Les McConnell (actor John Anderson) lights a cigar and enters the bank while cowboy Clell Williams (actor Jim Davis) comes out of a house and outside of town, an army of outlaws led by Jim Stark (actor Gary Lockwood) rides fast and then robs the bank in a silent way like well-trained soldiers. On their way out, Cash McLean (actor Michael Conrad), one of the criminals, gets shot in the leg and becomes a problem. At Mullenville, the town next to the robbers hideout owned by old rancher Mr. Early (actor Percy Helton), Jim Stark and his second-in-command Web Fraley (actor Jeremy Slate) bribe the important people (bartender, sheriff) and bring back drunk and compromising Clell Williams. The next target is Dodge City! Les McConnell posing as a gun salesman studies the town and warns the gang about the danger represented by Matt Dillon. Therefore Jim Stark orders murderer Johnny Barnes (actor Edmund Hashim) and his young brother-in-law Tom (actor Dee Pollock) to eliminate Matt Dillon. But for the first time, things don’t go according to plan …

    It’s the fancy and tense two-parter top-tier masterpiece all the way. Find another great episode supervised by the tandem of writer Clyde Ware and director Vincent McEveety that is the companion piece to “Seven Hours to Dawn” that deals again with a gang of outlaws willing to ruin Dodge City but it’s done as a clockwork con game/caper operation straight from Mission: Impossible because it tackles the theme of bank robbery through a mastermind-infiltrator (Les McConnell) and an army of belligerent riders which makes it like a coup. Writer Clyde Ware used to fashion a similar plot on the season 7 of Rawhide entitled “Piney” but without the army. Oddly enough, this highly effective team suffers from two black sheeps (Clell Williams and Cash McLean) which drink too much and the mastermind (Les McConnell) fails to be executed by the brutal leaders. The lush cast of robber characters (John Anderson as Les McConnell, The Stark brothers: Gary Lockwood as Jim and John Kellogg as Ted, Jim Davis as Clell Williams, Michael Conrad as Cash McLean, The Fraley brothers: Jeremy Slate as Web and Richard Jaeckel as Pence and Preston Pierce as Jeff, Ted Jordan as Shiloh) is fabulous as well as the epic score composed by Franz Waxman and conducted by Morton Stevens. Note this is the only entry featuring the episode title at the start of Act 1.

    Actor John Anderson returns from this season “Gold Mine”, John Kellogg from the season 9 “Ex-Con”, Michael Conrad from the season 10 “Hung High”, Jeremy Slate from the season 10 “The New Society”, Richard Jaeckel from the season 8 “Two of a Kind”.

    Highly recommended!

    View attachment 55837

    Music from CBS Westerns (label: Film Music Society)
    Franz Waxman’s “The Raid”, conducted by Morton Stevens in September 16-17, 1965. It’s a 15:57 score that has twelve cues.
    “The Holdup”
    “The Challenge”
    “Guns For Sale”
    “The Pursuit”
    “All Is Clear”
    “The Posse”
    “The Hideout”
    “Matt and Festus”
    “More Dead Outlaws”
    “The Last Two”
    “Between The Rocks”
    “Finale”

    http://www.filmmusicsociety.org/merchandise/cds/cbswesterns.html

    [​IMG]

  39. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #18
    “The Raid, Part I”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Franz Waxman
    guests: John Anderson, Gary Lockwood, Jeremy Slate, Jim Davis, Michael Conrad, Richard Jaeckel, John Kellogg, Ted Jordan, Preston Pierce, Dee Pollock, Edmund Hashim, Roy Engel, Percy Helton, Tony Haig

    “Violence has never been part of my nature”.
    —Mastermind Les McConnell (actor John Anderson).

    Sedalia, Missouri, Les McConnell (actor John Anderson) lights a cigar and enters the bank while cowboy Clell Williams (actor Jim Davis) comes out of a house and outside of town, an army of outlaws led by Jim Stark (actor Gary Lockwood) rides fast and then robs the bank in a silent way like well-trained soldiers. On their way out, Cash McLean (actor Michael Conrad), one of the criminals, gets shot in the leg and becomes a problem. At Mullenville, the town next to the robbers hideout owned by old rancher Mr. Early (actor Percy Helton), Jim Stark and his second-in-command Web Fraley (actor Jeremy Slate) bribe the important people (bartender, sheriff) and bring back drunk and compromising Clell Williams. The next target is Dodge City! Les McConnell posing as a gun salesman studies the town and warns the gang about the danger represented by Matt Dillon. Therefore Jim Stark orders murderer Johnny Barnes (actor Edmund Hashim) and his young brother-in-law Tom (actor Dee Pollock) to eliminate Matt Dillon. But for the first time, things don’t go according to plan …

    It’s the fancy and tense two-parter top-tier masterpiece all the way. Find another great episode supervised by the tandem of writer Clyde Ware and director Vincent McEveety that is the companion piece to “Seven Hours to Dawn” that deals again with a gang of outlaws willing to ruin Dodge City but it’s done as a clockwork con game/caper operation straight from Mission: Impossible because it tackles the theme of bank robbery through a mastermind-infiltrator (Les McConnell) and an army of belligerent riders which makes it like a coup. Writer Clyde Ware used to fashion a similar plot on the season 7 of Rawhide entitled “Piney” but without the army. Oddly enough, this highly effective team suffers from two black sheeps (Clell Williams and Cash McLean) which drink too much and the mastermind (Les McConnell) fails to be executed by the brutal leaders. The lush cast of robber characters (John Anderson as Les McConnell, The Stark brothers: Gary Lockwood as Jim and John Kellogg as Ted, Jim Davis as Clell Williams, Michael Conrad as Cash McLean, The Fraley brothers: Jeremy Slate as Web and Richard Jaeckel as Pence and Preston Pierce as Jeff, Ted Jordan as Shiloh) is fabulous as well as the epic score composed by Franz Waxman and conducted by Morton Stevens. Note this is the only entry featuring the episode title at the start of Act 1.

    Actor John Anderson returns from this season “Gold Mine”, John Kellogg from the season 9 “Ex-Con”, Michael Conrad from the season 10 “Hung High”, Jeremy Slate from the season 10 “The New Society”, Richard Jaeckel from the season 8 “Two of a Kind”.

    Highly recommended!

    View attachment 55837

    Music from CBS Westerns (label: Film Music Society)
    Franz Waxman’s “The Raid”, conducted by Morton Stevens in September 16-17, 1965. It’s a 15:57 score that has twelve cues.
    “The Holdup”
    “The Challenge”
    “Guns For Sale”
    “The Pursuit”
    “All Is Clear”
    “The Posse”
    “The Hideout”
    “Matt and Festus”
    “More Dead Outlaws”
    “The Last Two”
    “Between The Rocks”
    “Finale”

    http://www.filmmusicsociety.org/merchandise/cds/cbswesterns.html

    [​IMG]

    At Sedalia, Clell Williams lights his cigar to warn his partner.
    View attachment 55838
    Les McConnell lights his cigar as an answer to Williams.
    View attachment 55839
    The clock of leader Jim Stark who waits for the right time.
    View attachment 55840
    Leader Jim Stark is ready to launch his army.
    View attachment 55841
    Jim Stark and Web Fraley at the saloon of Mullenville.
    View attachment 55842
    Cash McLean and Clell Williams wait for to attack the farm.
    View attachment 55843

  40. JohnHopper

    Jim Davis as Clell Williams, Michael Conrad as Cash McLean

    Both of who would later become integral parts of two of television's later great dramas: Jim Davis as Jock Ewing on O-R CBS Dallas from 1978-81, and Michael Conrad as Sgt. Phil Esterhaus on Hill Street Blues from 1981-84 on NBC.

  41. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #18
    “The Raid, Part I”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Franz Waxman
    guests: John Anderson, Gary Lockwood, Jeremy Slate, Jim Davis, Michael Conrad, Richard Jaeckel, John Kellogg, Ted Jordan, Preston Pierce, Dee Pollock, Edmund Hashim, Roy Engel, Percy Helton, Tony Haig

    “Violence has never been part of my nature”.
    —Mastermind Les McConnell (actor John Anderson).

    Sedalia, Missouri, Les McConnell (actor John Anderson) lights a cigar and enters the bank while cowboy Clell Williams (actor Jim Davis) comes out of a house and outside of town, an army of outlaws led by Jim Stark (actor Gary Lockwood) rides fast and then robs the bank in a silent way like well-trained soldiers. On their way out, Cash McLean (actor Michael Conrad), one of the criminals, gets shot in the leg and becomes a problem. At Mullenville, the town next to the robbers hideout owned by old rancher Mr. Early (actor Percy Helton), Jim Stark and his second-in-command Web Fraley (actor Jeremy Slate) bribe the important people (bartender, sheriff) and bring back drunk and compromising Clell Williams. The next target is Dodge City! Les McConnell posing as a gun salesman studies the town and warns the gang about the danger represented by Matt Dillon. Therefore Jim Stark orders murderer Johnny Barnes (actor Edmund Hashim) and his young brother-in-law Tom (actor Dee Pollock) to eliminate Matt Dillon. But for the first time, things don’t go according to plan …

    It’s the fancy and tense two-parter top-tier masterpiece all the way. Find another great episode supervised by the tandem of writer Clyde Ware and director Vincent McEveety that is the companion piece to “Seven Hours to Dawn” that deals again with a gang of outlaws willing to ruin Dodge City but it’s done as a clockwork con game/caper operation straight from Mission: Impossible because it tackles the theme of bank robbery through a mastermind-infiltrator (Les McConnell) and an army of belligerent riders which makes it like a coup. Writer Clyde Ware used to fashion a similar plot on the season 7 of Rawhide entitled “Piney” but without the army. Oddly enough, this highly effective team suffers from two black sheeps (Clell Williams and Cash McLean) which drink too much and the mastermind (Les McConnell) fails to be executed by the brutal leaders. The lush cast of robber characters (John Anderson as Les McConnell, The Stark brothers: Gary Lockwood as Jim and John Kellogg as Ted, Jim Davis as Clell Williams, Michael Conrad as Cash McLean, The Fraley brothers: Jeremy Slate as Web and Richard Jaeckel as Pence and Preston Pierce as Jeff, Ted Jordan as Shiloh) is fabulous as well as the epic score composed by Franz Waxman and conducted by Morton Stevens. Note this is the only entry featuring the episode title at the start of Act 1.

    Actor John Anderson returns from this season “Gold Mine”, John Kellogg from the season 9 “Ex-Con”, Michael Conrad from the season 10 “Hung High”, Jeremy Slate from the season 10 “The New Society”, Richard Jaeckel from the season 8 “Two of a Kind”.

    Highly recommended!

    View attachment 55837

    Music from CBS Westerns (label: Film Music Society)
    Franz Waxman’s “The Raid”, conducted by Morton Stevens in September 16-17, 1965. It’s a 15:57 score that has twelve cues.
    “The Holdup”
    “The Challenge”
    “Guns For Sale”
    “The Pursuit”
    “All Is Clear”
    “The Posse”
    “The Hideout”
    “Matt and Festus”
    “More Dead Outlaws”
    “The Last Two”
    “Between The Rocks”
    “Finale”

    http://www.filmmusicsociety.org/merchandise/cds/cbswesterns.html

    [​IMG]

    Stay tuned for Part 2 on Thursday 7!!!

  42. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #19
    “The Raid, Part II”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Franz Waxman
    guests: a shortened cast of robber characters from Part I

    “That’s something I never will understand. Why is it the McConnells and the Starks keep thinking that’s an easy way to make a living?”
    —Marshal Matt Dillon

    It starts out with a 4 minutes 20 seconds recap of the previous part I. The gang abducts Doc to cure wounded Jeff Fraley (actor Preston Pierce). The authority of Jim Stark (actor Gary Lockwood) is called into question by Web Fraley (actor Jeremy Slate) and Ted Stark (actor John Kellogg) tries to tame his hotheaded brother. Dodge City is on fire! Matt Dillon launches a huge posse composed of the townpeople! At the hideout, Jim Stark asks Doc to shorten the life of dead weight Jeff Fraley but fails to execute it at the last minute and, one hour later, they ride out dead South to the desert in order to reach Mexico. Both sides are tired, desperate, ruthless. Only Matt Dillon and Festus continue the iron crusade.

    It’s a good large scale second part and a fine escape entry with great cavalcades that look like a mini feature film. As the story progresses to the desert, gang members drop like flies, the posse gets shorter and leader Jim Stark gradually looses his mind: shoot the black sheeps of his gang, hit Doc, suffers from delusion of grandeur to the point of no return. As in Part I, one gang member is wounded and cripple the group. As in “The Avengers”, Doc is abducted.

    Highly recommended!

  43. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #19
    “The Raid, Part II”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Franz Waxman
    guests: a shortened cast of robber characters from Part I

    “That’s something I never will understand. Why is it the McConnells and the Starks keep thinking that’s an easy way to make a living?”
    —Marshal Matt Dillon

    It starts out with a 4 minutes 20 seconds recap of the previous part I. The gang abducts Doc to cure wounded Jeff Fraley (actor Preston Pierce). The authority of Jim Stark (actor Gary Lockwood) is called into question by Web Fraley (actor Jeremy Slate) and Ted Stark (actor John Kellogg) tries to tame his hotheaded brother. Dodge City is on fire! Matt Dillon launches a huge posse composed of the townpeople! At the hideout, Jim Stark asks Doc to shorten the life of dead weight Jeff Fraley but fails to execute it at the last minute and, one hour later, they ride out dead South to the desert in order to reach Mexico. Both sides are tired, desperate, ruthless. Only Matt Dillon and Festus continue the iron crusade.

    It’s a good large scale second part and a fine escape entry with great cavalcades that look like a mini feature film. As the story progresses to the desert, gang members drop like flies, the posse gets shorter and leader Jim Stark gradually looses his mind: shoot the black sheeps of his gang, hit Doc, suffers from delusion of grandeur to the point of no return. As in Part I, one gang member is wounded and cripple the group. As in “The Avengers”, Doc is abducted.

    Highly recommended!

    The Fraley clan calls into question their leader.
    View attachment 55981
    The Stark clan counterattacks.
    View attachment 55982
    At the hideout, Jim Stark sees mad Clell Williams.
    View attachment 55983
    Clell Williams and Cash McLean justify themselves.
    View attachment 55984
    Jim Stark’s handgun is about to fire at black sheep Williams.
    View attachment 55985
    Mastermind Les McConnell is thinking of an escape plan while the others argue.
    View attachment 55986

  44. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #20
    “Killer at Large”
    written by Calvin Clements, Sr.
    directed by Marc Daniels
    guests: Geraldine Brooks, Cyril Delevanti, Stuart Erwin, Tim O’Kelly, Hardie Albright, Craig Hundley, John Pickard, Jim Beggs, Robert Ballew, Jonathan Lippe, Morgan Jones

    After the show of a street peddler selling a phony exilir, Festus accidently provokes a young gunslinger named Sandy (actor Tim O’Kelly) working for the charlatan. Later that night, drunk Sandy summons Festus for a street showdown. Sandy dies and wounded Festus runs to Nebraska and trades his mule Ruth to a second-rate horse. After passing by a general store and antagonizing one young man, Festus has a horse accident and spends the night in the barn of a station. A widow named Esther Harris (actress Geraldine Brooks) helps me out but the Gabins, the people from the general store, provoke him and are willing to get rid of the station. Meanwhile Matt Dillon and Thad look for Festus.

    It’s a solo Festus on the run entry. The first half of the story is really gloomy and the Gabins (actor John Pickard, Jim Beggs, Robert Ballew, Jonathan Lippe, Morgan Jones) are really plumb mean and tortures Festus. Thad is present. As in “Clayton Thaddeus Greenwood” with Thad, the foe insults a supporting character (Festus) and calls him “plowboy”. Contains stock music from Franz Waxman’s “The Raid”. A story consultant starts from that episode, writer Paul Savage who previously penned two season 11 episodes (“The Storm”, “The Bounty Hunter”).

    View attachment 56034

  45. Next week, folks, it's disc 6 with these episodes: “My Father’s Guitar”, “Wishbone”, “Sanctuary”, “Honor Before Justice”.
    Don't miss “My Father’s Guitar” with Beau Bridges and Steve Ihnat coming this Monday!

    So stay tuned for more Matt Dillon's adventures!

  46. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #21
    “My Father’s Guitar”
    written by Hal Sitowitz
    directed by Robert Totten
    music supervision by Morton Stevens
    guests: Beau Bridges, Robin Blake, Louis Massad, Steve Ihnat, Charles Dierkop, Dub Taylor, William Bramley

    A young Spanish guitar player named Jason (actor Beau Bridges) stops by a small farm to water his horse and ends up stabbing the owner named Jed Woodard (actor William Bramley) who provokes him about his instrument. A birthday party is organized in the honor of Doc at the Long Branch when Jason steps into and plays the guitar for the people. The next day, an old peddler named Sonny Starr (actor Dub Taylor) brings the body of the farmer and shows it to Matt Dillon and Festus. Two wild drovers (actor Steve Ihnat and Charles Dierkop) pretend to start a showdown for fun in the street and finish the evening at the Long Branch to get drunk and beat up Jason in a back Alley. Matt Dillon locks up the two drovers and find an evidence on them related to the dead farmer. Jason stages the escape of the two men and leaves with Sonny Starr. But the drovers find him …

    It’s a good Film Noir entry served by a fine low-key cinematography: Gunsmoke meets The Fugitive—actor Beau Bridges guests in twice on that series: see “Stroke of Genius” (season 3) and “The Other Side of the Coin” (season 4). The performances of actor Steve Ihnat as Jack and Charles Dierkop as Dan are noteworthy. Thad is present. Anytime, the character of obsessed Jason encounters a resistance related to his Spanish guitar, the aggressor (Jed Wooddard, Jack and Dan) always asserts it is for fun. This is the first credits as a music supervisor for composer and CBS musical director Morton Stevens and that credits is largely popular to those watching The Wild Wild West.

    Actor Steve Ihnat returns from the season 10 “The Pariah” and William Bramley from the season 8 “Collie’s Free”.

    Matt Dillon’s office winchesters used a background for the music supervisor credits.
    View attachment 56125

  47. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #22
    “Wishbone”
    written by ‘story consultant’ Paul Savage
    directed by Marc Daniels
    music supervision by Morton Stevens
    guests: Lew Gallo, Victor French, Lyle Waggoner, Billy Beck, Michael Fox, Natalie Masters, Joan Granville

    Three bandits rob the passengers of the stagecoach heading to Dodge City and one of the them named Spellman (actor Lew Gallo) abuses a woman when the driver shoots him in the leg. Doc is upset by the casualties of the stagecoach and decides to go fishing all alone when a snake bites him and the scared horse of his buggy runs away and leaves him without his medicine bag. Meanwhile Matt Dillon chases the bandits who are splitted into two parties. Festus finds out the secret place of Doc and decides to join him. After the discovery of injured Doc, Festus goes robbing a chicken at a farm and guns down the wounded stagecoach bandit and not knowing his true identity. At night, Matt Dillon ends up in a ghost farm and slowly eliminates the two remaining bandits. Festus is desperate by the state of Doc and feels guilty of committing a crime.

    It’s an adequate dual story with an atmospheric ghost farm scene. Both Matt and Doc are hurt. As in “Killer at Large”, Festus kills again a hotheaded gunman. Thad is present. As usual the cast of bandit characters is good: Lew Gallo as wounded Spellman, Victor French as Travers, Lyle Waggoner as Aikens. The episode title has no connection with the character of Wishbone from Rawhide but it refers to Festus’ wish to see Doc healed.

    Actor Lew Gallo returns from the season 5 “Brother Whelp”. For the record, this is the first part of actor Victor French who appears in 18 episodes.

  48. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #23
    “Sanctuary”
    written by Calvin Clements, Sr.
    directed by Harry Harris
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Sean Garrison, Richard Bradford, Larry Ward, Jack Grinnage, Joan Blackman, Virginia Gregg, Martin Priest, Charles Wagenheim, Marcia Blakesley

    A band of savage outlaws led by Paul Wiley (actor Richard Bradford) runs away from Dodge City and hurts a woman and her young son. Paul Wiley is hit in the leg and takes refuge in the Church with three hostages: reverand John Porter (actor Sean Garrison) and his bride Phyllis Bowman (actress Joan Blackman) and sewing old maid Miss Howell (actress Virginia Gregg). The posse track the bandits down while Doc is forced to heal the leg of Wiley. But Mr. Ayers (actor Larry Ward), the husband of the two casualties, wants to take his revenge with the help of the townspeople.

    It’s a decent hostage entry in which a preacher faces his moral opposite: a bandit. Thad is present.

    Actor Larry Ward returns from the season 10 “He Who Steals” and Jack Grinnage from the season 6 “Brother Love”.

  49. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #24
    “Honor Before Justice”
    written by Frank Q. Dobbs
    story by Frank Q. Dobbs and Robert Stewart, Jr.
    directed by Harry Harris
    music by Lyn Murray
    guests: France Nuyen, Ralph Moody, George Keymas, Michael Ansara, Ken Renard, Richard Gilden, James Almanzar, Ted Jordan, Barton MacLane, Harry Bartell, Noah Beery

    After the majority of the Osage council—except Grey Horse (actor Michael Ansara)—votes and states that John Two-Bears (actor Noah Beery) is guilty of killing a man named Samuel Brightwing and will be executed in three days, his young daughter Sarah (actress France Nuyen) rides to Dodge City and asks the help of the law but only Thad is available. Meanwhile Matt Dillon and Festus question rancher Herk Crawford (actor Barton MacLane) about his stolen horses when a band of undercover Indians dressed as Americans raid the farm. Later on, Thad talks to Two-Bears, heads to see Grey Horse and fights two undercover Indians when he gets arrested by agent Franklin (actor Harry Bartell). Matt Dillon asks the release of Thad and runs to unfold the mystery of the stolen horses and the connection to Grey Horse which may alter the fate of Two-Bears.

    It’s a laborious and weak mystery paired with an Indian conspiracy entry and the corny companion piece to “Kioga” in terms of Indians-related episode because of the unexpected arrival of an Indian youngster to town to claim justice. The episode is limited because of the blatant artificial studio-bound scenes. Thad is present. As usual actor Michael Ansara is typecasted as an Indian character: see his input on Rawhide. Actually, Ansara acts like Qarlo from The Outer Limits episode “Soldier”: which is not a compliment. It’s not an original score but stock music from Murray’s “Kioga” because we recognize the harspichord music and from Richard Shores.

    Actor Noah Beery returns from the season 9 “Prairie Wolfer”.

  50. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #25
    “The Brothers”
    written by Tom Hanley
    directed by Tay Garnett
    music by Franz Waxman (stock music)
    guests: Scott Marlowe, Robert Crawford, Eddie Firestone, Kathryn Harrow, James Nusser, Sailor Vincent, Tom Reese, Warren Vanders, Edmund Hashim, Joseph Hoover, Mark Sturges

    A band of outlaws led by two brothers rob the bank of Dodge City. At the exit of the establishment, Billy (actor Robert Crawford), the young brother of Ed (actor Scott Marlowe), is shot in the shoulder and held prisoner at the marshal’s office. Ed plans to free his brother by terrorizing and torturing the townspeople: Doc, Thad’s friend named Will (actor Mark Sturges), newspaperman Dave Crandall (actor Joseph Hoover) and his wife Helen (actess Kathryn Harrow). Matt Dillon counterattacks with the kid brother used as a trap.

    It’s a rough educational entry that condemns violence and the second holdup in Dodge City episode after “The Raid” and features stock music from Waxman’s “The Raid” and Morton Stevens’ “Seven Hours to Dawn”. As a holdup drama, it’s average. As in “The Raid”, Doc is hit by an outlaw. The cast of bandit characters is decent but not edgy: Scott Marlowe, Tom Reese, Warren Vanders, Edmund Hashim—Scott Marlowe slightly displays his Outer Limits madness, by the way. Thad is present and introduces his friend Will to Matt Dillon. Veteran director Tay Garnett is known for the 1946 Film Noir feature film: The Postman Always Rings Twice.

    Actor Scott Marlowe returns from the season 10 “Thursday’s Child” and Tom Reese from this season “The Hostage”. Actor Edmund Hashim returns from this season “The Raid” in which he plays again a bank robber.

  51. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #26
    “Which Dr.”
    written by Les Crutchfield
    directed by Peter Graves (the brother of James Arness)
    music supervision by Morton Stevens
    guests: R.G. Armstrong, Gregg Palmer, Shelley Morrison, George Lindsey, Elisabeth Fraser, Claire Wilcox

    Two buffalo hunters miss their targets because singing outloud Thad stampedes the herd when a wagon stops and the two men threaten him to steal his boots to make him pay but he runs away. Latter the afternoon and at the marshal’s office, Thad shows Doc the fish he caught and tells him his secret place. One hour after, Doc and Festus go fishing but Argonaut Moonercan (actor R.G. Armstrong), the leader of the buffalo hunters, hold them prisoners in order to cure his little daughter Piney and, later on, forces Doc to stay and to marry Addie (actress Shelley Morrison) so that he become the resident camp’s doctor.

    It’s a corny and comical adventure, another hillbilly entry after “Sweet Billy, Singer of Songs” and another Doc fails to go fishing entry after “Wishbone” but ends up as a forced good samaritan story. The episode title refers to the two doctors of the episode: Doc Adams representing academics and Addie, the local healer. It reminds the milieu of a Rawhide episode entitled “Incident of the Rawhiders” (season 6) in which Rowdy Yates is obliged to marry one local woman. Thad is present. This is the first direction of actor Peter Graves that is just a flat studio-bound work and he will later manage one episode of Mission: Impossible entitled “Kidnap” (season 7) that is much better. The majority of the stock music is from Richard Shores’ “Sweet Billy, Singer of Songs”.

    Actor R.G. Armstrong returns from the season 10 “The Lady”.

  52. Don't have much to say on these episodes, John, as I haven't seen this season…just wanted to let you know that I'm following your reviews with interest. I'm especially interested in "Sanctuary" as it stars the Man in a Suitcase himself, Richard Bradford. He's a compelling actor to watch, and he didn't have the career he deserved, IMO.

    [​IMG]

    Keep up the good work!

  53. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #23
    “Sanctuary”
    written by Calvin Clements, Sr.
    directed by Harry Harris
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Sean Garrison, Richard Bradford, Larry Ward, Jack Grinnage, Joan Blackman, Virginia Gregg, Martin Priest, Charles Wagenheim, Marcia Blakesley

    A band of savage outlaws led by Paul Wiley (actor Richard Bradford) runs away from Dodge City and hurts a woman and her young son. Paul Wiley is hit in the leg and takes refuge in the Church with three hostages: reverand John Porter (actor Sean Garrison) and his bride Phyllis Bowman (actress Joan Blackman) and sewing old maid Miss Howell (actress Virginia Gregg). The posse track the bandits down while Doc is forced to heal the leg of Wiley. But Mr. Ayers (actor Larry Ward), the husband of the two casualties, wants to take his revenge with the help of the townspeople.

    It’s a decent hostage entry in which a preacher faces his moral opposite: a bandit. Thad is present.

    Actor Larry Ward returns from the season 10 “He Who Steals” and Jack Grinnage from the season 6 “Brother Love”.

    Portrait of outlaw Paul Wiley (actor Richard Bradford).
    View attachment 56566 View attachment 56567 View attachment 56568 View attachment 56569 View attachment 56570 View attachment 56571 View attachment 56572 View attachment 56573 View attachment 56574 View attachment 56575 View attachment 56576 View attachment 56577 View attachment 56578

  54. Jeff Flugel

    Don't have much to say on these episodes, John, as I haven't seen this season…just wanted to let you know that I'm following your reviews with interest.

    Jeff Flugel

    Keep up the good work!

    Thank you, partner!

  55. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #27
    “Harvest”
    written by Les Crutchfield
    directed by Harry Harris
    music by Harry Zimmerman and Willis H. Schaefer
    guests: James MacArthur, Karl Swenson, George Kennedy, Lesley Ann Warren, Alma Platt, Ted Jordan, Fred Coby

    The McGoverns, a poor family of Scottish people, settle on the land of iron proprietor Ben Payson (actor George Kennedy) with a legal claim and that triggers ownership issues and an impossible romance between two youngsters: David McGovern (actor James MacArthur) and Betsy Payson (actress Lesley Ann Warren). Rancher Ben Payson complains to his best friend: Marshal Matt Dillon. Feeling betrayed by his daughter, Payson does his best to make the life of the McGoverns miserable.

    It’s a simple and sad Scottish settler drama paired with a young people love story that slightly reminds the antagonistic families dilemma tackled by Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Don’t miss the hand-to-hand fight scene at the camp between Ben Payson and Ian McGovern because of the hectic catchy music conducted by Morton Stevens. One episode of Rawhide had a Scottish story: “Incident of the Dowery Dundee” (season 6). Anyway, the cast of characters is good: the McGoverns (James MacArthur, Karl Swenson) and the Paysons (George Kennedy, Lesley Ann Warren) and the two families have one common denominator: the absence of mother. Writer Les Crutchfield seems to be focused on picturesque folkish characters: see his previous gold prospectors in “Taps for Old Jeb” and buffalo hunters in “Which Dr.” Thad is present and is Betsy’s best friend. It’s the first episode produced by John Mantley and Philip Leacock is only executive producer.

    Actors George Kennedy (“Crooked Mile”) and Karl Swenson (“Blue Heaven”) all return from season 10.

    A change of production: associate producer John Mantley is promoted to producer.
    View attachment 56663
    A change of production: producer Philip Leacock became the executive producer.
    View attachment 56664
    End credits for CBS composer Harry Zimmerman and Willis H. Schaefer.
    View attachment 56665

  56. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #28
    “By Line”
    written by Les Crutchfield
    directed by Allen Reisner
    music supervision by Morton Stevens
    guests: Chips Rafferty, Stefan Arngrim, Dabbs Greer, Denver Pyle, Ted de Corsia, Gertrude Flynn, Dorothy Neumann, Adrienne Marden, John Francis, Fletcher Fist, Maudie Prickett

    Riding slow his mule on a country road, Festus fails to be knocked over by the fast wagon of newspaper man Angus McTabbot (actor Chips Rafferty) and his nine years old nephew named Jock (actor Stefan Arngrim) running away from Hays City. A few minutes later, angry Festus finds the wrecked wagon at the end of the road and some bullet holes in the tailgate. A few hours later, Festus becomes the new associate of McTabbot and opens up a printing house at Dodge City so that they release the first issue of The Dodge City Clarion, The Voice of Truth. Unable to write, Festus becomes an ad man for the newspaper and the official reporter whose articles are penned by the little Jock. But things turn wrong because Festus become a gossip reporter creating disorder amongst people and therefore complaining violently: starting with cattleman Merl Benlan (actor Ted de Corsia) against Festus then general store owner Clab Chummers (actor Denver Pyle) against his rival Jonas Finch (actor Dabbs Greer) …

    It’s a light but fun story dealing with the manipulative power of the press combined with advertisement that reminds the topic from Samuel Fuller’s 1952 Park Row and the second Scottish entry after the previous “Harvest” (also written by Les Crutchfield) and in both the Scots are obliged to leave town to avoid trouble. After “Death Watch” with the Kansas City Beacon, this is the second episode focusing on the theme of the press depicted as dubious. Thad is absent but mentioned by Festus. The music for the theme of Festus and the majority of the stock music is from Richard Shores’ “Sweet Billy, Singer of Songs”.

    Actor Dabbs Greer returns from the season 9 “Caleb”, Denver Pyle from the season 10 “Deputy Festus” and Ted de Corsia from the season 7 “He Learned About Women”.

    Park Row (1952) – Trailer

  57. Next week, folks, it's the last disc with these episodes:
    “Treasure of John Walking Fox”, “My Father, My Son”, “Parson Comes to Town”, “Prime of Life”.
    So stay tuned for more Matt Dillon's adventures!

  58. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #29
    “Treasure of John Walking Fox”
    written by Clyde Ware
    story by Leo Bagby
    directed by Marc Daniels
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Leonard Nimoy, Jim Davis, Ted Gehring, Tom McCauley, Kelton Garwood, Richard Webb, Lloyd Gough

    At night, three saddle tramps led by loud mouth Gainer (actor Jim Davis) stop at the camp of two bull hide traders but one of them is a Comanche named John Walking Fox (actor Leonard Nimoy) so the three men are obliged to leave. The next day at Dodge City, the two sides feud again each other. Later on, Jacob Beamus (actor Lloyd Gough) tries to sell his hives for the usual 50 cents a piece to the merchant Mr. Tigue (actor Richard Webb) who cuts the price to 26 cents so Jacob implies he is a crook and threatens him with a handgun and ends up dead. John Walking Fox pays the funeral of his partner with a rare $50 gold coin that raises suspicion. Later on and back at the camp, a fight concerning the location of a hidden gold shipment through a map is started by the same three wanderers against John Walking Fox but stopped at the last minute by the greedy hive merchant who helps him. The morning after at the Dodge House hotel, two parties still look for the gold but John Walking Fox has already prepared a double-edged scheme …

    It’s a decent morality tale about greed and the third Indian entry after “Kioga” and “Honor Before Justice”. The three saddle tramps are played by Jim Davis, Ted Gehring, Tom McCauley who plays Banjo at the Long Branch. As in Rawhide (see the season 3 “Incident Before Black Pass”), actor Leonard Nimoy is typecasted as an Indian but, here, he acts like a wise man in the line of actor David Carradine in Kung Fu. Thad is present.

    Actor Jim Davis returns from this season “The Raid”, Kelton Garwood from this season “Seven Hours to Dawn” and Leonard Nimoy from the season 8 “I Call Him Wonder”.

  59. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #30
    “My Father, My Son”
    written by Hal Sitowitz
    directed by Robert Totten
    music supervision by Morton Stevens
    guests: Jack Elam, Lee Van Cleef, John McLiam, Billy Halop, Scott Hale, James Nusser, Teno Pollick, Charles Kuenstle, Del Monroe, James Gammon, Zalman King

    Hays City, Trail’s End saloon: hotheaded Joey Jeffords (actor Zalman King), one of the two farmer brothers, provokes professional gunman Jim Barrett (actor Jack Elam) playing pool who eventually shoots him straight but his brother Bernie (actor Charles Kuenstle) sends a curse on him. The next day at Dodge City, Jim Barrett is arrested by Matt Dillon and released after checking his criminal status. At night, another hotheaded young man (actor Teno Pollick) tries to eliminate Barrett but in his hotel room and fails and we learn later it is his own son. Farmer Ike Jeffords (actor Lee Van Cleef) rides to unite all his sons for his vengeance crusade.

    It’s an interesting and unusual intimistic Film Noir entry and a dual rough family drama shot at night with a wonderful dark palette. Notice the way DP Harry Stradling, Jr. uses twice the zoom shot when an intruder observes Barrett outside the saloon. As in “Ten Little Indians”, the character of actor Zalman King dies quickly by the hand of a hired gun. As in “Kioga”, the character of actor Teno Pollick tries to kill a man at the Dodge House hotel. Thad is present. The cast of the Jeffords family consists of the following actors: Lee Van Cleef, Charles Kuenstle, Del Monroe, James Gammon, Zalman King. The minor character of Doherty (actor John McLiam) is amusing and rents his handgun to David Barrett. Among other things, contains stock music from Bernard Herrmann’s “Encounter at Boot Hill” from Rawhide (season 8)—used for the Jeffords family—, Franz Waxman’s “The Raid”.

    Actor Jack Elam (“Clayton Thaddeus Greenwood” and “Malachi” in which he plays a gunning outlaw), Teno Pollick (“Kioga”), Zalman King (“Ten Little Indians”) all return from this season 11. Actors John McLiam (“Big Man, Big Target”) and Lee Van Cleef (“The Pariah”) all return from season 10.

  60. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #31
    “Parson Comes to Town”
    written by Verne Jay
    directed by Marc Daniels
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Sam Wanamaker, Lonny Chapman, John McLiam, Hank Patterson, Kelton Garwood, Ted Jordan, Woody Chambliss, Charles Wagenheim, Elizabeth Rogers, Joan Granville, Kevin Burchett

    Clarendon, Texas: Reverend Aaron Longworth (actor Sam Wanamaker) is gunned down by two unknown drifters willing to get his cash in his new-built church and presumed dead because of the three bullets in his back. At Dodge City, the Reverend stops at the Dodge House hotel and acts like a prophet of doom and warns the population of a future funeral. The townspeople are shaken up! The Reverend spots the guilty one named Sipes (actor Lonny Chapman) and keeps on harassing him. At the Marshal’s office along with Matt, Festus, Doc, the man dressed as the Reverend reveals he is a Southern Illinois schoolteacher named Asa Longworth and the twin brother of Reverend Aaron Longworth on his crusade to track down the last of the two murderers of his kin. Returning home to Dodge, Willie Dougherty (actor John McLiam) warns Matt Dillon about the events of the first murderer’s death at Garden City. At the Dodge House, Matt Dillon warns Sipes he sent his description to Clarendon so Sipes looses his mind and shows his true nature.

    It’s a good and solid revengist drama in which the avenger toys with the nerves of his prey—picture if you will Columbo acting as a preacher. The score of Leon Klatzkin helps to underline the tense atmosphere. The character of undertaker Percy Crump (actor Kelton Garwood) returns from “Treasure of John Walking Fox”. Thad is present and shot in the leg. As in “The Avengers” with a mad judge, Matt Dillon does his duty with a wound.

    Actor Lonny Chapman (“Outlaw’s Woman”), John McLiam (“My Father, My Son”) and Kelton Garwood (“Treasure of John Walking Fox”) all return from this season 11. Actor Sam Wanamaker appears the same year in one episode (“The Night of the Howling Light”) of The Wild Wild West produced by John Mantley.

  61. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11

    Episode #32
    “Prime of Life”
    written by Daniel B. Ullman
    directed by Robert Totten
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Douglas Kennedy, Jonathan Lippe, Joe Don Baker, Martin West, Victor French, Lyn Edgington, Cal Naylor, Barbara Wilkin, James Nusser, Ted French

    At night, three young men led by Kyle Stoner (actor Jonathan Lippe) step into the Long Branch to get a drink. Hotheaded and fast drawer Kyle moves to the table of a young couple to introduce saloon girl Wilma Prather (actress Lyn Edgington) to his friends Joe Smith (actor Victor French) and Jack Brown (actor Martin West) but the boyfriend named Brad (actor Cal Naylor) has an argument with Kyle and it ends up in a duel in which Brad dies. A few minutes later, Matt Dillon locks up Kyle for interfering with an officer in the performance of his duty. Matt Dillon suspects the three young men to be part of a holdup. Feeling humiliated, Kyle Stoner wants to kill Matt Dillon! Later on, the father of the Stoner’s discovers a terrible secret that may stain his good name … a fourth member of the holdup.

    It’s a ruthless and nihilistic Film Noir entry and the third story related to a holdup after “The Raid” and “The Brothers” but also a family drama and its added value is the performances of Jonathan Lippe, Joe Don Baker, Victor French. Notice the intrinsic violence of that episode: see the prologue’s showdown, the tense social relations between Matt Dillon and Kyle and Woody Stoner and, Festus, beaten up in a back alley at night—shot like “My Father’s Guitar”. After “Seven Hours to Dawn” with Matt Dillon, find another leading character (here, Festus) on the brink of dying! The Stoner family consists of ex-lawman John (actor Douglas Kennedy) and his two sons: Kyle (actor Jonathan Lippe) and Woody (actor Joe Don Baker). Actor Ted French is the father of actor Victor French. Thad is present. Contains a cue from Morton Stevens’ “Seven Hours to Dawn” at the start of Act 1.

    Actor Victor French (“Wisbone”) and Jonathan Lippe (“Killer at Large”) all return from this season 11 and Douglas Kennedy from the season 10 “The Violators”.

  62. TOP GUNSMOKE SEASON 11 EPISODES
    The Raid
    Seven Hours to Dawn
    The Hostage
    The Avengers
    Death Watch
    My Father’s Guitar
    Ten Little Indians
    The Bounty Hunter
    Outlaw’s Woman
    Parson Comes to Town
    My Father, My Son
    Malachi

  63. GUNSMOKE SEASON 11THE SCORES

    INDEX OF COMPOSERS ONSCREEN CREDITS

    Harry Geller (2)
    “The Hostage”
    “Outlaw’s Woman”

    Leon Klatzkin (8)
    “The Storm”
    “Taps for Old Jeb”
    “The Pretender”
    “Death Watch”
    “Sanctuary”
    “Treasure of John Walking Fox”
    “Parson Comes to Town”
    “Prime of Life”

    Tommy Morgan
    “South Wind”

    Lyn Murray (2)
    “Kioga”
    “Honor Before Justice” (stock music)

    Richard Shores (2)
    “Clayton Thaddeus Greenwood”
    “Sweet Billy, Singer of Songs”

    Fred Steiner
    “Ten Little Indians”

    Morton Stevens (2)
    “Seven Hours to Dawn”
    “Malachi”

    Franz Waxman (2)
    “The Raid”
    “The Brothers” (stock music)

    Harry Zimmerman and Willis H. Schaefer
    “Harvest”

    Notes
    Composer Morton Stevens conducts the scores of Franz Waxman (“The Raid”) and Harry Zimmerman and Willis H. Schaefer (“Harvest”) and we also see the generic credits of music supervision by Morton Stevens.

    music supervision Morton Stevens (5)
    “My Father’s Guitar”
    “Wishbone”
    “Which Dr.”
    “By Line”
    “My Father, My Son”

  64. Well, let’s continue our exploration of Gunsmoke! I come out of The Long Branch and walk down the streets of Dodge City and my next stop is… season 12. The series goes in color in the 1966-1967 period and was spoofed in a Wild Wild West episode entitled “The Night of the Surreal McCoy” (season 2) in which agent James West travels through a painting of a small town and faces a gunslinger in a street (actually, agent Artemus Gordon, disguised as a pistolero)—shot in the vein of the series showdown title sequence.

    GUNSMOKE • SEASON 12 (1966-1967) (29 episodes • 50 mins • color)
    The transition to color is quite a shock for those who experience the show in monochrome and keep in mind that the same process occurs for The Wild Wild West. At first, the colors look too bright, the light lacks of contrast and the sets are so unreal and stories soften and simplify but, as time passes, you get used to the change. One more thing about color, it allows to discover that two of the leads are redhead: Matt Dillon and Miss Kitty. The stories continue to be engaging enough with a blatant emphasis on psychological dramas during the first half of the season and then we resume to edgy tales. Unlike season 10 and 11 with a soundstage, the showdown title sequence is renewed and shot in a back lot as in the old days. The producers supervise less episodes than previously: 29 instead of 32.

    This season sees more or less the same big writers like Calvin Clements, Paul Savage, Hal Sitowitz, Clyde Ware and the same directors like Vincent McEveety and Mark Rydell but also some new ones like Richard Colla, Rawhide producer Bernard Kowalski, Irving J. Moore, Charles Rondeau. For the record, Irving J. Moore was a major asset on The Wild Wild West and directed twenty six episodes from that peculiar series.

    The opening and end theme music are renewed. Among other things, CBS musical director and composer Morton Stevens continues to contribute with four scores: “The Jailer”, “Moonstone”, “Muley”, “Ladies from St. Louis”. Apart from Morton Stevens, this season features four Wild Wild West composers: Harry Geller for “Mad Dog”, newcomer Jack Pleis for “Noose of Gold”, Richard Shores for “Snap Decision” and Fred Steiner for “The Mission”. As in season 11, the most prolific composer remains: Leon Klatzkin with a total of eight onscreen credits but not eight original scores, by the way. Leon Klatzkin’s music is dominant and is also tracked on The Wild Wild West. And, above all, one score is provided by Silver Age artists Ernest Gold (“Gunfighter R.I.P”) and Jerry Goldsmith (“Whispering Tree”).

    PRODUCTION TEAM
    producer: John Mantley
    executive producer: Philip Leacock
    story consultant: Paul Savage
    director of photography: Harry Stradling, Jr.

    The team remains the same except that Mantley and Leacock switch positions. Harry Stradling, Jr. still dominates the season but has got two occasional replacements. Working on the last season of Rawhide, cinematographer Neal Beckner shoots four episodes (“Gunfighter R.I.P”, “Moonstone”, “Champion of the World”, “Muley”) and maverick Charles F. Wheeler shoots one (“The Lure”).

    CAST OF CHARACTERS
    regular cast: James Arness (US Marshal Matthew “Matt” Dillon), Ken Curtis (Marshal assistant “Festus” Haggen), Milburn Stone (“Doc” Adams), Amanda Blake (Miss “Kitty” Russell), Roger Ewing (Deputy Thaddeus “Thad” Greenwood).

    The semi regular Thad gets his picture medaillon credits during the opening titles along with the four leads.

    supporting cast: Glenn Strange (Bartender/Fiddle player “Sam” Noonan), Ted Jordan (Freight agent “Nathan” Burke), Woodrow Chambliss (Woody Lathrop), James Nusser (wino “Louie” Pheeters).

    As usual, the strength of season 12 is the colorful guest actors that add weight to the story: see Claude Akins (2), John Anderson, Ed Asner, Timothy Carey, James Daly, Bette Davis, Jim Davis, Bruce Dern, Victor French, Steve Ihnat (2), John Ireland, Ben Johnson, Martin Landau, Darren McGavin, Stephen McNally, Diana Muldaur, Lois Nettleton, Warren Oates, Carroll O’Connor, Albert Salmi, John Saxon, William Shatner, Tom Skerritt (2), Michael Strong, Dub Taylor (3), Torin Thatcher, Jon Voight, Fritz Weaver, Morgan Woodward (2). For the record, three actors are part of director Sam Peckinpah’s team: Ben Johnson, Warren Oates, Dub Taylor.

    THE DVD SETS
    The prints are restored and look wonderful. Anyway, the logo and the title credits are blury during the opening titles. In each episode and at the end of the first set of end credits, a voice-over announcer introduces the next week trailer. It features a selection of separated from the episodes and unrestored next week trailers and, also, English subtitles.

  65. JohnHopper

    Well, let’s continue our exploration of Gunsmoke! I come out of The Long Branch and walk down the streets of Dodge City and my next stop is… season 12. The series goes in color in the 1966-1967 period and was spoofed in a Wild Wild West episode entitled “The Night of the Surreal McCoy” (season 2) in which agent James West travels through a painting of a small town and faces a gunslinger in a street (actually, agent Artemus Gordon, disguised as a pistolero)—shot in the vein of the series showdown title sequence.

    “It's the Wild Wild West, for a showdown, with adventure,” said the announcer in the CBS promo.

    James West spoofing Matt Dillon!
    View attachment 57016 View attachment 57017

  66. Find the new line of Gunsmoke during season 12.

    1. The New Showdown Main Titles

    Matt Dillon’s handgun and Matt Dillon faces a gunslinger.
    View attachment 57018 View attachment 57019
    Matt Dillon’s face and the first use of the series logo.

    2. The New Opening Titles

    The second use of the series logo.
    View attachment 57020
    View attachment 57022
    The first credits for James Arness.

    3. The New End Titles

    Matt Dillon’s handgun used a background for the producer credits.

    View attachment 57023
    Matt Dillon’s handgun used a background for the executive producer credits.
    View attachment 57024
    Matt Dillon’s hanged hat used a background for the third use of the series logo.
    View attachment 57025
    Matt Dillon’s hanged hat used a background for the second credits of James Arness.
    View attachment 57026
    Matt Dillon’s office winchesters used a background for the story consultant credits.
    View attachment 57027
    Matt Dillon’s office winchesters used a background for the cinematographer credits.
    View attachment 57028
    The CBS logo in color.
    View attachment 57029

  67. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #1
    “Snap Decision”
    written by Richard Carr
    directed by Mark Rydell
    music by Richard Shores
    guests: Claude Akins, Michael Strong, Michael Cole, Sam Gilman, Hank Patterson, Orville Sherman

    After the accidental killing of a former friend turned outlaw named Ray Gilcher (actor Sam Gilman), feeling tired and guilty Matt Dillon takes a room at the Dodge House and announces his resignation to Hays City Marshal Clint Tucker (actor Claude Akins) and Festus. At the funeral of Gilcher, Dillon meets Kipp (actor Michael Cole), the son of the deceased one. Later on, bounty hunter Shaver (actor Michael Strong) stops to town and gets acquainted with Kipp. We learn that the so-called son is a fraud and a poker player willing to get a gold watch he used to loose and teams up with Shaver to corner a wanted criminal at the Long Branch.

    It’s an adequate but un-inspired twisted bounty hunter entry about guilt and deceit. The high point is the performance of actor Michael Strong depicting a lousy and manipulative bounty hunter. The main drawback is the flat cinematography and the over-lit look that contrasts sharply with the previous monochrome season 11. The resignation gimmick was also done on Rawhide with trail boss Gil Favor. Composer Richard Shores also works on The Wild Wild West.

    Actor Claude Akins returns from the season 10 “Bad Lady from Brookline”.

    End credits for CBS composer Richard Shores.
    View attachment 57098

  68. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #2
    “The Goldtakers”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Martin Landau, Roy Jenson, Brad Weston, William Bramley, John Boyer, Woody Chambliss, Charles Wagenheim, Ted Jordan, Charles Francisco, Michael Greene, Denver Pyle

    “Full cooperation. Yeah, I’m not sure that includes commandeering a man’s place of business. I know it doesn’t include beating up on a town citizen.”
    —Marshall Matt Dillon

    After the elimination of a military division, a band of outlaws led by Britton (actor Martin Landau) steals an unusable gold shipment and decides to pose as blue coat soldiers to melt and separate the gold at Dodge City. Matt Dillon leaves town to go fishing with a friend named Caleb Nash (actor Denver Pyle). Pretending to follow a set of rules, Britton posing as Captain Freeman asks the authorization to Thad to use the blacksmith’s shop for making a new rapid-fire weapon but, at the Long Branch, owner Jake Stuck (actor William Bramley) refuses cold because of property reasons and ends up in a cell. Meanwhile Matt Dillon has a good and lazy time at the creek. Britton launches the melting process at the blacksmith but his men get impatient, especially his second Troy (actor Roy Jenson). Things don’t go smoothly and easy as planned …

    It’s a top-tier entry and a fine intruder/imposter episode in the line of the season 11 “Seven Hours to Dawn” (also written by Clyde Ware and directed by Vincent McEveety) in terms of grand scheme and thanks to the cunning and greedy leader character named Britton played by actor Martin Landau who manipulates two main characters: Festus and Matt Dillon. In a way, actor Martin Landau did a Rollin Hand job because, at that time, he was currently working on Mission: Impossible but, in 1965, he also played a devious military (General Grimm) in the subversive putschist episode of The Wild Wild West entitled “The Night of the Red-Eyed Madmen” (directed by Irving J. Moore). Oddly enough, part of the plot of melting gold foreshadows a season 3 episode of Mission: Impossible entitled “The Mercenaries”.

    Basically, the story is divided in four parts: Britton coming to Dodge City, Matt Dillon fishing in the countryside, locked up Jake Stuck yelling in his cell, Matt Dillon is held prisoner. One swift violent scene sums-up very well the duplicity of the outlaws and corrupted power: a farmer stops his buggy next to the blacksmith’s shop and then receives a severe beating-up by the two phony sentries! Don’t miss the grand finalé that sees two sides facing each other as in The Wild Bunch! They should have opened up the season with that smashing one. My only complaint is how a savage outlaw like Britton can turn into a disciplined man so quickly, including the use of government documents! After “Snap Decision”, Matt Dillon changes again his habit and deserts his duty. Find a good ominous score by Leon Klatzkin which is tracked in the season 3 episode of The Wild Wild West entitled “The Night of the Arrow”: an episode that is also about blue soldiers imposters—what a funny coincidence!

    Actor Martin Landau returns from the season 4 “The Patsy” and appears as a guest on many western series (see The Big Valley, Bonanza, Branded, Lawman, Maverick, The Rifleman, Rawhide, Tate, Wanted: Dead or Alive, The Wild Wild West, to name a selection) and was a good friend of Silver Age film star Steve McQueen (see his western output: Trackdown, Wanted: Dead or Alive, The Magnificent Seven, Nevada Smith, Junior Bonner, Tom Horn). Actor William Bramley (“My Father’s Guitar”) and Denver Pyle (“By Line”) all return from season 11.

    End credits for CBS composer Leon Klatzkin.
    View attachment 57121

  69. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #2
    “The Goldtakers”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Martin Landau, Roy Jenson, Brad Weston, William Bramley, John Boyer, Woody Chambliss, Charles Wagenheim, Ted Jordan, Charles Francisco, Michael Greene, Denver Pyle

    Britton (actor Martin Landau) posing as Captain Freeman.
    View attachment 57122 View attachment 57123 View attachment 57124 View attachment 57125 View attachment 57126 View attachment 57127 View attachment 57128

  70. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #2
    “The Goldtakers”
    written by Clyde Ware
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Martin Landau, Roy Jenson, Brad Weston, William Bramley, John Boyer, Woody Chambliss, Charles Wagenheim, Ted Jordan, Charles Francisco, Michael Greene, Denver Pyle

    Britton (actor Martin Landau) posing as Captain Freeman.
    View attachment 57129 View attachment 57130 View attachment 57131 View attachment 57132 View attachment 57133 View attachment 57134 View attachment 57135 View attachment 57136 View attachment 57137

  71. JohnHopper

    Well, let’s continue our exploration of Gunsmoke! I come out of The Long Branch and walk down the streets of Dodge City and my next stop is… season 12. The series goes in color in the 1966-1967 period and was spoofed in a Wild Wild West episode entitled “The Night of the Surreal McCoy” (season 2) in which agent James West travels through a painting of a small town and faces a gunslinger in a street (actually, agent Artemus Gordon, disguised as a pistolero)—shot in the vein of the series showdown title sequence.

    GUNSMOKE • SEASON 12 (1966-1967) (29 episodes • 50 mins • color)
    The transition to color is quite a shock for those who experience the show in monochrome and keep in mind that the same process occurs for The Wild Wild West. At first, the colors look too bright, the light lacks of contrast and the sets are so unreal and stories soften and simplify but, as time passes, you get used to the change. One more thing about color, it allows to discover that two of the leads are redhead: Matt Dillon and Miss Kitty. The stories continue to be engaging enough with a blatant emphasis on psychological dramas during the first half of the season and then we resume to edgy tales. Unlike season 10 and 11 with a soundstage, the showdown title sequence is renewed and shot in a back lot as in the old days. The producers supervise less episodes than previously: 29 instead of 32.

    This season sees more or less the same big writers like Calvin Clements, Paul Savage, Hal Sitowitz, Clyde Ware and the same directors like Vincent McEveety and Mark Rydell but also some new ones like Richard Colla, Rawhide producer Bernard Kowalski, Irving J. Moore, Charles Rondeau. For the record, Irving J. Moore was a major asset on The Wild Wild West and directed twenty six episodes from that peculiar series.

    The opening and end theme music are renewed. Among other things, CBS musical director and composer Morton Stevens continues to contribute with four scores: “The Jailer”, “Moonstone”, “Muley”, “Ladies from St. Louis”. Apart from Morton Stevens, this season features four Wild Wild West composers: Harry Geller for “Mad Dog”, newcomer Jack Pleis for “Noose of Gold”, Richard Shores for “Snap Decision” and Fred Steiner for “The Mission”. As in season 11, the most prolific composer remains: Leon Klatzkin with a total of eight onscreen credits but not eight original scores, by the way. Leon Klatzkin’s music is dominant and is also tracked on The Wild Wild West. And, above all, one score is provided by Silver Age artists Ernest Gold (“Gunfighter R.I.P”) and Jerry Goldsmith (“Whispering Tree”).

    PRODUCTION TEAM
    producer: John Mantley
    executive producer: Philip Leacock
    story consultant: Paul Savage
    director of photography: Harry Stradling, Jr.

    The team remains the same except that Mantley and Leacock switch positions. Harry Stradling, Jr. still dominates the season but has got two occasional replacements. Working on the last season of Rawhide, cinematographer Neal Beckner shoots four episodes (“Gunfighter R.I.P”, “Moonstone”, “Champion of the World”, “Muley”) and maverick Charles F. Wheeler shoots one (“The Lure”).

    CAST OF CHARACTERS
    regular cast: James Arness (US Marshal Matthew “Matt” Dillon), Ken Curtis (Marshal assistant “Festus” Haggen), Milburn Stone (“Doc” Adams), Amanda Blake (Miss “Kitty” Russell), Roger Ewing (Deputy Thaddeus “Thad” Greenwood).

    The semi regular Thad gets his picture medaillon credits during the opening titles along with the four leads.

    supporting cast: Glenn Strange (Bartender/Fiddle player “Sam” Noonan), Ted Jordan (Freight agent “Nathan” Burke), Woodrow Chambliss (Woody Lathrop), James Nusser (wino “Louie” Pheeters).

    As usual, the strength of season 12 is the colorful guest actors that add weight to the story: see Claude Akins (2), John Anderson, Ed Asner, Timothy Carey, James Daly, Bette Davis, Jim Davis, Bruce Dern, Victor French, Steve Ihnat (2), John Ireland, Ben Johnson, Martin Landau, Darren McGavin, Stephen McNally, Diana Muldaur, Lois Nettleton, Warren Oates, Carroll O’Connor, Albert Salmi, John Saxon, William Shatner, Tom Skerritt (2), Michael Strong, Dub Taylor (3), Torin Thatcher, Jon Voight, Fritz Weaver, Morgan Woodward (2). For the record, three actors are part of director Sam Peckinpah’s team: Ben Johnson, Warren Oates, Dub Taylor.

    THE DVD SETS
    The prints are restored and look wonderful. Anyway, the logo and the title credits are blury during the opening titles. In each episode and at the end of the first set of end credits, a voice-over announcer introduces the next week trailer. It features a selection of separated from the episodes and unrestored next week trailers and, also, English subtitles.

    Nice overview, John! Looking forward to reading your thoughts on season 12. Judging by the screen captures above, the show looks purty darn good in color…

    Head 'em up, move 'em on! Oops…wrong show. 😉

  72. Jeff Flugel

    Nice overview, John! Looking forward to reading your thoughts on season 12. Judging by the screen captures above, the show looks purty darn good in color…

    Head 'em up, move 'em on! Oops…wrong show. 😉

    Thank you, Deputy! I'm glad you enjoy it. “The Goldtakers” is one of the two masterpieces from season 12.

  73. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #3
    “The Jailer”
    written by Hal Sitowitz
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Morton Stevens
    guests: Bette Davis, Bruce Dern, Robert Sorrells, Zalman King, Tom Skerritt, Julie Sommars

    Just released from the penitentiary after a six years sentence, Lou, Jack and Mike—three Stone brothers—abduct Miss Kitty after closing time at the Long Branch. The mind behind this plot is old and bitter Etta Stone willing to avenge her late husband by forcing Matt Dillon going to see Miss Kitty at her house and then locking him up in the tack room and preparing him for the hanging. Festus, Thad and Doc worry about the absence of their friends. Two sons separatly try to negociate with the prisoners for their releases. Unfortunately, Jack Stone and Miss Kitty get caught by Etta and her two sons in the barn. Later on, Lou Stone discovers that his wife cheats him with his brother Ben. The big payback eventually arrives …

    It’s a real good and weird abduction/revenge drama paired with the subtheme of the cheating wife and supported by the refined score of Morton Stevens and the quality of the overall cast. The character of Etta Stone belongs to the horror anthology Thriller. It loosely reminds the season 11 “The Avengers” in which Miss Kitty and Festus are abducted and judged. The Stone family consists of: Golden Age star Bette Davis as Etta, Bruce Dern as Lou, Robert Sorrells as Mike, Zalman King as Jack, Tom Skerritt as Ben, Julie Sommars as Sara. By sheer coincidence, both Tom Skerritt and Julie Sommars appear as a couple in the season 11 “The Pretender” and Bruce Dern and Zalma King as hired guns in “Ten Little Indians”. After Richard Shores, this is the second composer working on The Wild Wild West.

    Actors Bruce Dern (“Ten Little Indians”, “South Wind”), Robert Sorrells (“Clayton Thaddeus Greenwood”, “Malachi”), Zalman King (“Ten Little Indians”, “My Father, My Son”), Tom Skerritt (“The Pretender”), Julie Sommars (“The Pretender”) all return from season 11.

    End credits for CBS composer Morton Stevens.
    View attachment 57242

  74. JohnHopper

    Just released from the penitentiary after a six years sentence, Lou, Jack and Mike—three Stone brothers—abduct Miss Kitty after closing time at the Long Branch.

    Interesting– a bad Mike Stone on that CBS Western, before the good Mike Stone (the late, great Karl Malden) on The Streets of San Francisco on ABC!

  75. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #4
    “The Mission”
    written by Richard Carr
    directed by Mark Rydell
    music by Fred Steiner
    guests: Robert Random, Steve Ihnat, Warren Oates, Robert F. Simon, Arch Johnson, Jim Davis, Rafael Campos, Robert Tafur, Ruben Moreno, Michael Abelar, Bert Madrid

    Riding with two extra horses, Matt Dillon heads to the prison of Monterrey, Mexico, to get an American convict wanted for murder named Jim Basset (actor Jim Davis) and bumps into two banditos and a young saddle bum carrying a rebel cap named Reb Jessup (actor Robert Random)—the son of an old Confederate Colonel—that make the two outlaws flee. At the cantina of Santa Rosa, two renegades named Ashe (actor Steve Ihnat) and Laffe (actor Warren Oates) wait for Jessup and, later on, beat up and rob Matt Dillon. Ashe poses as the marshal to free Jim Basset and uses him to commit felonies. Matt Dillon recovers consciousness at the house of two confederate partisans who hold him prisoner because of his legal status but he eventually manages to escape from and goes after the four outlaws.

    It’s an exciting solo Matt Dillon entry, a wild outlaws adventure paired with a critical look on the conferederate cause. The bandit performances of two actors shine: Steve Ihnat as Ashe and Warren Oates as Lafe—Steve Ihnat is as unbridled as in the season 11 “My Father’s Guitar”. At the cantina, actor Warren Oates performs a song at the guitar. After Richard Shores and Morton Stevens, this is the third composer working on The Wild Wild West.

    Actors Rafael Campos (“Ten Little Indians”), Jim Davis (“The Raid”, “Treasure of John Walking Fox”), Steve Ihnat (“My Father’s Guitar”), Warren Oates (“Ten Little Indians”), Robert Random (“South Wind”, “Sweet Billy, Singer of Songs”) all return from season 11. Actors Arch Johnson (“Hammerhead”) and Robert F. Simon (“Song for Dying”) all return from season 10.

    End credits for CBS composer Fred Steiner.
    View attachment 57283

  76. John, you are doing a great job highlighting these color episodes. I was 12 or 13 when I was introduced to Gunsmoke (1969-1970). I believe that it opened the CBS Monday network broadcast night. Always enjoyed the one-two punch of Gunsmoke and Here's Lucy. As you may have gathered elsewhere, I have slowly been making my way through the three massive Gunsmoke all in ones found in WalMart (3 compilations so far – Season 1-4, Seasons 5-7 and Seasons 8-9). These sets have been at a better price point for me and I have just about learned how to remove the discs from them :D.

    I have been able to covince my wife that Gunsmoke was a pretty good show (even if b/w). She just doesn't care for Chester and is waiting for Festus to arrive. I am looking forward to seeing the hour long episodes that begin with season 7. I have been amazed by the variety of forbidden topics that seem to be just under the surface for a mid 50's series. Seems that television may have been a bit more adult than I was lead to believe. I am really developing a fondness for these characters now that I didn't have during my teens.

    Having these episodes at my fingers is still something I find incredible. Such an enjoyable hobby for someone who spent many hours as a child in front of the tube. I am still amazed that three networks produced so many great series.

  77. Doug Wallen

    John, you are doing a great job highlighting these color episodes.

    Thank you, Doug!

    Oddly enough, I discovered the series in 2007 when the first season DVD was offered and it didn't ring any bell. I passed by.
    It is through its music scores that I get interested in seriously watching the show but from the Festus era only.
    I used to order 4 seasons of the series in the last five months: season 10, 11, 12, 13.

    I understand your wife concerning Festus who is the 'country' equivalent of Artemus Gordon from The Wild Wild West
    as a colorful figure and he appears mid-season 9 as a regular character (episode 16, “Prairie Wolfer”).
    He had a one-shot introduction during season 8 (episode 13, “Us Haggens”).

    Prior to his Festus character, actor Ken Curtis guests in as a new character in
    "Jayhawkers" and "Change of Heart" (season 4)
    "The Ex-Urbanites" and "Speak Me Fair" (season 5)
    "Lover Boy" (season 9)

  78. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #5
    “The Good People”
    written by James Landis
    directed by Robert Totten
    music supervision by Morton Stevens
    guests: Morgan Woodward, Tom Simcox, Allen Case, Steve Gravers, Charles Wagenheim, Kelton Garwood, Ted Jordan, Woody Chambliss, Clyde Howdy, Frederic Downs, James O’Hara, Shug Fisher

    Three cattlemen from the Rucker family hunt down rustlers moving a heard and hang one innocent drover named Jed Bailey (actor Steve Gravers). An old bounty hunter and now saddle tramp named Silas Shute (actor Shug Fisher) picks up the body of the hanged man believing he’s wanted criminal Jake Daniels and brings it back to Dodge City to get a reward and ends up in a cell for murder charge. The Rucker’s have already removed the rope from the tree and let accuse the bum. But Matt Dillon has a hunch …

    It’s a fair and bitter-sweet entry that combines Film Noir, court-room intrigue, existential family drama about the theme of guilt. The cast for the Rucker’s consists of: Morgan Woodward as Ben, Tom Simcox as the adopted Seth, Allen Case as Gabe. As in the season 11 “The Pretender”, actor Tom Simcox plays again a troubled character with a conscience. The undertaker character of Percy Crump returns from season 11. The courtroom takes place at the Dodge House. Features cues from Katzkin’s “The Goldtakers” during the prologue.

    Actors Morgan Woodward (“Seven Hours to Dawn”, “Taps for Old Jeb”), Tom Simcox (“The Pretender”), Steve Gravers (“Deathwatch”), Kelton Garwood (“Treasure of John Walking Fox” and “Parson Comes to Town”) all returns from season 11. Actor Allen Case returns from the season 9 “The Promoter”.

    End credits for Morton Stevens as a music supervisor.
    View attachment 57348

  79. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #6
    “Gunfighter R.I.P”
    written by Hal Sitowitz
    story by Michael Fisher
    directed by Mark Rydell
    cinematography by Neal M. Beckner
    music by Ernest Gold
    guests: Darren McGavin, Stefan Gierasch, Michael Conrad, France Nuyen, Don Hanmer, H.T. Tsiang, Allen Emerson

    Professional killer Joe Bascome (actor Darren McGavin) stops in a small town to get a bath and to meet later Paul (actor Michael Conrad) and Mark (actor Stefan Gierasch)—the Douglas brothers—offering $1000 to eliminate Matt Dillon. At the exit of the shaving parlor, he gets mixed up in a feud between three saddle bums and two Chinese people working in a laundry house. In the very end, Bascome is wounded in the leg and in the shoulder, the antogonists are dead as well as the old Chinese man and his daughter Ching Lee (actress France Nuyen) takes care of Bascome by looking for Doc at Dodge City. Time passes and the Douglas brothers remind Bascome his contract but he is also in love with Ching Lee. Things take another turn at Dodge City …

    It’s an intimistic drama and a character study focused on a proud hired killer that humanize himself at his own risk. That kind of story rather fits the Seventies series Kung Fu. As usual, actor Darren McGavin shines! Nuff said… Features some stock music. It’s one of the rare season 12 episodes shot by DP Neal M. Beckner who used to work on the last season of Rawhide.

    Actors Darren McGavin (“The Hostage”), France Nuyen (“Honor Before Justice”), Michael Conrad (“The Raid”) all return from season 11.

    End credits for CBS composer Ernest Gold.
    View attachment 57367
    End credits for CBS cinematographer Neal M. Beckner.
    View attachment 57368

  80. JohnHopper

    GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #6
    “Gunfighter R.I.P”
    written by Hal Sitowitz
    story by Michael Fisher
    directed by Mark Rydell
    cinematography by Neal M. Beckner
    music by Ernest Gold
    guests: Darren McGavin, Stefan Gierasch, Michael Conrad, France Nuyen, Don Hanmer, H.T. Tsiang, Allen Emerson

    Professional killer Joe Bascome (actor Darren McGavin) stops in a small town to get a bath and to meet later Paul (actor Michael Conrad) and Mark (actor Stefan Gierasch)—the Douglas brothers—offering $1000 to eliminate Matt Dillon. At the exit of the shaving parlor, he gets mixed up in a feud between three saddle bums and two Chinese people working in a laundry house. In the very end, Bascome is wounded in the leg and in the shoulder, the antogonists are dead as well as the old Chinese man and his daughter Ching Lee (actress France Nuyen) takes care of Bascome by looking for Doc at Dodge City. Time passes and the Douglas brothers remind Bascome his contract but he is also in love with Ching Lee. Things take another turn at Dodge City …

    It’s an intimistic drama and a character study focused on a proud hired killer that humanize himself at his own risk. That kind of story rather fits the Seventies series Kung Fu. As usual, actor Darren McGavin shines! Nuff said… Features some stock music. It’s one of the rare season 12 episodes shot by DP Neal M. Beckner who used to work on the last season of Rawhide.

    Actors Darren McGavin (“The Hostage”), France Nuyen (“Honor Before Justice”), Michael Conrad (“The Raid”) all return from season 11.

    Actor Darren McGavin as professional killer Joe Bascome.
    View attachment 57369 View attachment 57370 View attachment 57371 View attachment 57372 View attachment 57373 View attachment 57374 View attachment 57375 View attachment 57376 View attachment 57377 View attachment 57378

  81. Doug Wallen

    Having these episodes at my fingers is still something I find incredible. Such an enjoyable hobby for someone who spent many hours as a child in front of the tube. I am still amazed that three networks produced so many great series.

    Boy, ain't that the truth! So many great, iconic shows produced by only a few networks. The same is true for the U.K. during the same period (1950s through the 1970s)…essentially only 2 main channels, but so much good content. And now that a large portion of these great shows are out on DVD, for us to savor at our leisure…well, it doesn't get much better than that, for a classic TV fan!

    JohnHopper

    Actor Darren McGavin as professional killer Joe Bascome.
    View attachment 57369 View attachment 57370

    Love me some Darrin McGavin! You got me curious about the above episode, John! McGavin is looking lean and mean in those screencaps, too.

  82. Jeff Flugel

    Love me some Darrin McGavin! You got me curious about the above episode, John! McGavin is looking lean and mean in those screencaps, too.

    To be frank, he is not on his sarcastic Kolchak mode. He is straight as an arrow.

  83. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #7
    “The Wrong Man”
    written by Clyde Ware
    story by Robert Lewin
    directed by Robert Totten
    music by Irwin Kostal
    guests: Carroll O’Connor, James Almanzar, Mel Gaines, Gilman Rankin, Victor Izay, Terry Frost, Kevin O’Neal, Charles Kuenstle, Clifton James, James Anderson

    Extremely poor farmer Hootie Kyle (actor Carroll O’Connor) is denied any credits from the general store and decides to play poker to raise some money and pay his $100 debt back. After loosing the game and outside of Dodge City, Hootie Kyle rob $30 from the winner named Tenner (actor Clifton James) and has a fight. Later on, the other poker players led by Harmon (actor James Anderson) kill Tenner to get his cash. Hootie Kyle is falsely-accused of murder and ends up in a cell for his trial but his two young sons break him from the marshal’s office. The three Kyle’s head to Montana but Matt Dillon and his posse go after them while the real murderers bump into …

    It’s an average sinister social mysery episode not far away from John Ford’s The Grapes of Wrath. It’s another falsely-accused character after “The Good People”.

    Actor James Anderson returns from the season 11 “The Bounty Hunter”. The same year, actor Carroll O’Connor appears in one season 2 episode of The Wild Wild West entitled “The Night of the Ready-Made Corpse”.

    End credits for CBS composer Irwin Kostal.
    View attachment 57423

  84. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #8
    “Whispering Tree”
    written by Calvin Clements, Sr.
    directed by Vincent McEveety
    music by Jerry Goldsmith
    guests: John Saxon, Jacqueline Scott, Edward Asner, Morgan Woodward, Donald Losby, Christopher Pate, Rex Holman, Allen Jaffe, Roy Barcroft, Ted Jordan, Fred Coby, Kathleen O’Malley, Stephen McEveety, Lane Chandler

    Released from an eigth years sentence and delivered by two police men on horse to the stage station, farmer Virgil Stanley (actor John Saxon) meets his former partner Earl Miller (actor Morgan Woodward) to split his share of a $40,000 loot from a robbery. Arriving at Dodge City, Virgil Stanley joins his loving wife Ada (actress Jacqueline Scott) and his two young sons but one man still tracks him down: sheriff Jack Edmond (actor Edward Asner) who has an old grudge. Unfortunately his land has changed over the years and Virgil Stanley doesn’t recognize the hideout of the loot and his partner gets impatient and gives him an ultimatum.

    It’s a decent and sad family drama about greed paired with a mystery. The three partners of Virgil Stanley are: Earl Miller (actor Morgan Woodward), Garr (actor Rex Holman) and Ryan (actor Allen Jaffe). As in “The Jailer” (also directed by Vincent McEveety), the episode starts with the release of a convict. Notice the score by Jerry Goldsmith and one sad and pastoral cue heard when Virgil Stanley runs to join back his wife leaving on a wagon will be recycled on a season 2 episode of The Wild Wild West entitled “The Night of the Lord of Limbo”. Composer Jerry Goldsmith previously contributed to another CBS western series: Rawhide in “Incident in the Middle of Nowhere” (season 3).

    Actors Edward Asner (“Hung High”), Lane Chandler (“Chicken”), Donald Losby (“The Pariah”) all return from season 10.
    Western series-wise, actor Ed Asner will appear the next year on The Wild Wild West episode “The Night of the Amnesiac”.
    Actors Rex Holman (“Malachi”), Allen Jaffe (“Clayton Thaddeus Greenwood”), John Saxon (“The Avengers”) all return from season 11.
    Actors Jacqueline Scott from the season 9 “Kitty Cornered” and Morgan Woodward from this season “The Good People”.
    For the anecdote, actor Stephen McEveety is the nephew of director Vincent McEveety and plays the boy named Richard from the stagecoach.

    End credits for CBS composer Jerry Goldsmith.
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  85. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #9
    “The Well”
    written by Francis Cockrell
    directed by Marc Daniels
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Joan Payne, Lawrence Casey, Elizabeth Rogers, Woody Chambliss, Charles Wagenheim, Ted Jordan, Ted Gehring, Karl Lukas, Pete Kellett, Robert Ballew, Madgel Dean, Guy Raymond

    All the water holes are contaminated in the vicinity of Dodge City and people start to die. One well remains in town and it is rationed by the authorities. The situation is hopeless. Out of the blue, travelling peddler Dr. Tobias (actor Guy Raymond) stop in town and fails to be lynched because he pretends to be a rain maker. Meanwhile Festus scouts the country to get some water supply. Matt Dillon uses Dr. Tobias to divert the people by performing an Indian ritual.

    It’s a little and engrossing survival episode that relies on the creation of ‘an end of the world’ atmosphere and another multi directional story: the basic plot is the lack of water paired with a peddler and the fate of deserter soldier Jim Libby (actor Lawrence Casey) returning home. Compromised water source used to be the trade mark story from Rawhide. The ominous score of Leon Klatzkin helps to sustain the dry atmosphere as in the season 11 “Death Watch”.

    Actor Ted Gehring returns from the season 11 “Treasure of John Walking Fox”.
    Actor Lawrence Casey is known for his part of Private Hitchcock in the WWII series The Rat Patrol.

  86. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #10
    “Stage Stop”
    written by Hal Sitowitz
    directed by Irving J. Moore
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: John Ireland, Jack Ging, Andy Albin, Anne Whitfield, Joseph Ruskin, Michael Vandever, Sid Haig, Steve Raines

    Travelling on a stagecoach, Doc and his blind patient/ex-lawman Simon Dobbs (actor Jack Ging) stop at a stage station where they meet the brutal and dubious owner named Jed Coombs (actor John Ireland) who treats his wife Lori (actress Anne Whitfield) badly and work with a band of outlaws led by Curt Hansen (actor Joseph Ruskin). Later on and on the road, the stagecoach is attacked by the same outlaws and they take refuge back to the stage station where they treat the wounded ones and the pregnant wife of Jed Coombs. The outlaws now head to the stage station to get the cashbox!

    It’s a good ruthless and gloomy solo Doc episode, a stage station melodrama and, ultimately, an unusual love affair and the first job of Wild Wild West director Irving J. Moore. The bandits consist of the Hansen’s brothers Curt (actor Joseph Ruskin) and Wade (actor Sid Haig) and maverick Lingo (actor Michael Vandever). For the anecdote, both actors John Ireland aka Jed Colby and Steve Raines aka Jim Quince used to be leading characters in Rawhide but, here, the first one is a crook and the second is a stage driver. For the record, actor Steve Raines previously appeared on Gunsmoke in some season 4 small parts with no credits: see “The F.U.” and “The Constable”.

    Actor Joseph Ruskin returns from the season 7 “The Gallows”, Michael Vandever from the season 11 “Seven Hours to Dawn” and “Gold Mine” and Anne Whitfield from the season 6 “Don Matteo”.

  87. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #11
    “The Newcomers”
    written by Calvin Clements, Sr.
    directed by Robert Totten
    music supervision by Morton Stevens
    guests: Karl Swenson, Jon Voight, Ben Wright, Robert Sorrells, Charles Dierkop, Daniel Ades, Larry Aten, John Pickard, James Murdock

    The Swedish Karlgren’s family—a father named Lars (actor Karl Swenson) and his naive son Petter (actor Jon Voight)—leave a small town while they witness the hanging of a shady hide trader led by a vigilante (actor John Pickard). Arriving at Dodge City, the Karlgren’s join one relative: barber Birger Engdahl (actor Ben Wright). Petter has an argument with a wild drover named Silvee (actor Charles Dierkop) and, later on, kills him by accident in the livery stable but one hidden eye witness named Bob Handley (actor Robert Sorrells) sees the deed and tries to blackmail the family.

    It’s a cynical Film Noir entry about guilt and lynching and a devious blackmailer. The performance of devilish Robert Sorrells is noteworthy. Writer Calvin Clements tackles again the theme of running away from responsibility as the season 11 “Killer at Large”. For the anecdote, actor James Murdock plays the regular character of Mushy on Rawhide and we see him as a wild and drunk drover during the first meeting with Silvee outside of the Long Branch.

    Actors Charles Dierkop (“My Father’s Guitar”), John Pickard (“Killer at Large”), Karl Swenson (“Harvest”) all return from season 11, Robert Sorrells from this season 12 “The Jailer” and Ben Wright from the season 9 “Father’s Love”.

    End credits for the music supervisor.
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  88. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #12
    “Quaker Girl”
    written by Preston Wood
    directed by Bernard L. Kowalski
    music by Leigh Harline
    guests: William Shatner, William Bryant, Ariane Quinn, Liam Sullivan, Warren Vanders, Ben Johnson, Timothy Carey, Tom Reese, Joseph Breen, Anna Karen, Nancy Marshall

    In the middle of the desert mountains, dying sheriff Wes Kester (actor William Bryant) asks Thad to look for and kill his prisoner robber Fred Bateman (actor William Shatner). Thad faces the vicious Bateman who first beats him up and tries to bribe him with money from a loot. After losing their horses, Bateman keeps on antagonizing naive Thad while crossing the desert. Bateman succeeds in reversing his social position but Thad reacts violently when a convoy of Quakers stop them. At Dodge City, Doc, Miss Kitty and Matt Dillon worry about Thad who carries $600. At the camp of the Quakers, the outlaw asserts that Thad is Fred Bateman to confuse the believers and he also poses as a righteous man and dresses as one of them. Thad gets along very well with a quaker girl named Cora Ellis (actress Ariane Quinn). Three saddle bums stop at the Quaker town and threatens them to get Fred Bateman and the loot!

    It’s a solo Thad episode, a good survival and imposter entry about the modern-day myth of the Devil through the figure of outlaw Fred Bateman who corrupts and twists the truth and keeps on laughing like a maniac and, as they say, the Devil even recites the Holy script! As in “The Goldtakers”, one outlaw poses as a disciplined man. As in “The Newcomers” with Petter Karlgren, the subtheme of innocence is tackled and the irony of the story is that naive Thad is considered as a devilish man by the Quakers. The cast of characters is really good and the cunning performance of William Shatner is noteworthy. This is the first job of Rawhide producer Bernard L. Kowalski and the film-making is inspired, especially the desert scenes. Rudy and Sam plays music for Miss Kitty at the Long Branch. The Quakers are played by Liam Sullivan, Ariane Quinn, Warren Vanders and the saddle bums are played by Ben Johnson, Timothy Carey as a Mexican bandito, Tom Reese. For the record, actor Ben Johnson is a recurring member of John Ford and Sam Peckinpah’s team.

    Actors Ariane Quinn (“Death Watch”), Tom Reese (“The Brothers”), Warren Vanders (“The Brothers”) all return from season 11. Actor William Bryant returns from the season 9 “Once a Haggen”, Timothy Carey from the season 3 “The Gentleman”, Ben Johnson from the season 8 “Quint-Cident”, Liam Sullivan from the season 2 “The Executioner”.

    End credits for CBS composer Leigh Harline.
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  89. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #13
    “Moonstone”
    written by Paul Savage
    directed by Richard A. Colla
    cinematography by Neal M. Beckner
    music by Morton Stevens
    guests: Mike Kellin, Ted Jordan, Fred Coby, Jeff Palmer, Tom Skerritt, Gail Kobe, Warren Kemmerling

    Pan shot up on a crow sitting at the top of a farm’s fence where Chad Timpson (actor Mike Kellin) ride to Dodge City with his simple-minded brother Orv (actor Tom Skerritt) meanwhile an outlaw calls for Chad and pins a wanted poster on the door of the barn. At the Long Branch, Chad talks to saloon girlfriend Madge Taber (actress Gail Kobe) when his brother gets mixed up in a feud with three drovers that is stopped by his intervention. Later on, Chad meets his old partner in crime Del Phillips (actor Warren J. Kemmerling) at the saloon and agrees for a showdown for the next day. Chad prepares his own funeral and manages a future for his brother but the final blow will come from his own kin …

    It’s a minor disappointed love affair episode about a man with a heavy conscience. It looks like a psychiatric family play done by Elia Kazan. It’s the second season 12 episode shot by DP Neal M. Beckner who used to work on the last season of Rawhide.

  90. GUNSMOKE SEASON 12

    Episode #14
    “Champion of the World”
    written by Les Crutchfield
    directed by Marc Daniels
    cinematography by Neal M. Beckner
    music by Leon Klatzkin
    guests: Alan Hale, Don Keefer, Ted Jordan, Charles Wagenheim, Jane Dulo, Arthur Peterson, Ralph J. Rose, Pete Kellett, Troy Melton, Dan Tobin, John McLiam, Gale Robbins

    Retired boxer champion Bull Bonnick (actor Alan Hale) working in a cosy New York City bar decides to sell his business and heads to Dodge City to buy Miss Kitty’s Long Branch. Bonnick meets a cheap swindler nicknamed the professor (actor Dan Tobin) who bleeds his money to create doubtful and unfinished businesses. Matt Dillon orders Festus to watch the actions of the professor. One day, Bonnick meets the landlady (actress Jane Dulo) of his sordid hotel who tells him the truth about his partner so he eventually faces the man who fools him from the beginning and, worst, pretends to be his friend …

    It’s a modest comedic con man entry about the themes of the deceit and the fish out of the water that is filled up with fistfight scenes with Thad and Matt Dillon. To illustrate the cultural gap between Bonnick and the townspeople, barkeep Sam pours some Champagne to four regular Long Branch drunkards. Unlike “The Newcomers”, Dodge City has a new barber played by Don Keefer. It’s the third season 12 episode shot by DP Neal M. Beckner who used to work on the last season of Rawhide.

    Actor Alan Hale returns from the season 6 “Minnie” and Dan Tobin from the season 8 “Panacea Sykes”. For the record, Actor Alan Hale will guest in on the season 4 episode of The Wild Wild West entitled “The Night of the Sabatini Death”.

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