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markbeckuaf

Grooving to "The Rifleman"!!

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One of the local cable channels has been carrying "The Rifleman" lately and I've really been totally grooving to it! Noir and hard-hitting crime on the range! Love this stuff! Anyone else enjoy this series?

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it's one of my favorites. what local station, if i might ask? Encore used to air it but no more.

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Miss Goddess, very cool! Yeah, I love it! It's on RetroTV, which is a digital sub-channel carried by a local channel, it rocks, they have a lot of great old programs on there (waaaaaay better than TV Land ever was honestly).

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hi mark,

i've heard of this RetroTV, i wish my cable company carried it. you're right about tvland, it's dreadful.

 

i'm glad you're enjoying "the rifleman". it had some strong stories and the relationship between mark and his dad is very real and touching.

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I, too, enjoy Retro TV. There is another station called THIS which carries old movies and TV shows that's great as well. That's one good thing about life here in Tampa, the choices are good and cheap. When I went home to Jacksonville last month for a week, some of the tier II stuff we get here they have to pay extra for. I think TMC is one of them. I'm always nostalgic for a few days after I return but then reality sets in; I didn't end up in such a bad spot.

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THE RIFLEMAN was marketed well. It IS a good show. Direct and well constructed. But you know what sets it apart from the numerous other westerns? That adorable theme music! Hear it once, you're hooked for life! I think that's the main reason the show lives on while so many others have been forgotten.

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Redriver, I agree with you about the theme! And also the music that is used throughout the show, it's always very intense! Keeps you glued to the screen!

 

Today's show was great, one of those where Lucas didn't have to draw down in order to make his point and help someone out. I love how there is always that edge of menace with his character, like he will snap on you at any moment if given a reason, but you do have to give him a reason and sometimes even then he will hold back for any number of reasons, one of those to set an example for his son. He's a moral compass of a bygone era.

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*Paul Fix* (Sheriff Micah Torrence) is another asset to the show. Was anyone busier in westerns (TV and Film) than Paul?

 

I love the way he'd call McCain "Lucas, Boy..."

 

I know what you mean, wouldbestar, about the edginess Connors brings to the role. He

is quite unpredictable. You really don't want to cross him.

 

Oh, gee, y'all are making me sad I don't to see this show anymore. :(

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"But you know what sets it apart from the numerous other westerns? That adorable theme music! Hear it once, you're hooked for life!"

 

Silly ol' me. I thought it was because Chuck Connors was a lean mean tall drink o' water with a beautiful stride down that dusty street shootin' off that Rifle, man. Tsk!

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Miss Goddess,

So sorry you can't see it! I'm feeling very lucky to be able to watch it daily! I haven't seen it in ages before now!

 

I agree with you about Paul Fix, great character actor (long time in films too!), and his presence is awesome in this show, I agree! I love the bond between he and Lucas (there is one episode in particular that kind of provides the background for that). It's like he's his dad!

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Paul Fix was a amazing actor. He first appeared in films in 1925 up to 1981. He appeared in over 350 films and TV shows. In 1930 he became friends with a young actor named John Wayne and co starred in over two dozen of the Duke's films. He co wrote the screenplay for "Tall in the Saddle" , which he co-starred with Wayne. He was Dr. Piper on the original "Star Trek" pilot ,"Where No Man Has Gone Before", but was replaced by DeForest Kelly in the series.

Story has it that he taught John Wayne , Wayne's "Rolling Walk" and was also an acting coach for his new friend. He was the father-in-law of Harry Carey,Jr...A very talented man.....

 

Edited by: fredbaetz on Nov 16, 2010 3:06 AM

 

Edited by: fredbaetz on Nov 16, 2010 3:13 AM

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Fred, is it just me or do you notice a similarity between John Wayne's "walk" and Broderick Crawford's? Did they have the same teacher?

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Merchandising was another asset of the series. And the inclusion of his son, hooking every 6 year old boy in America.

 

I could not imagine merchandizing TV Westerns again, though. "I just gotta have the real gun and holster, just like Lone Ranger..."

 

"...just like Paladin!"

 

"...just like Johnny Yuma!"

 

On and on. Hats, shirts with fringe ("And the girls look just like Dale Evans!") With her six-shooters, too! Jeepers... do you know how many malls, airports, schools and offices would be on constant lock-down because someone saw a "kid with a gun" back in 1959 or 1962? Jiminy...

 

And don't get me started on TVLAND's awful programming for these last ten years. Good grief. Starts off great, and goe straight into the toilet. If only Congress would have let us choose channels to actually pay to watch instead of forcing us into block-programming.

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OLLIE,

 

I had the toy rifle, a prized possession. I had one trinket or another inspired by all the shows you mentioned. Thank God we didn't have Tivo!

 

MISS GODDESS,

 

Paul Fix's Micah is not unlike BONANZA'S Sherriff Roy Coffee, likably played by Ray Teal. Another fine and dependable character actor. Did these guys ever give a bad performance?

 

MAVEN OF THE CINEMA,

 

That tall drink of water was known to Chicago baseball fans before he ever twirled a rifle. He played for both The Cubs and The White Sox!

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What WONDERFUL television *The Rifleman* was. My father died when I was a tyke, and I could relate to Mark, the son, in a certain way. Lucas was, in many ways, a father figure. His high morals and the way he doted over his son bring a tear to my eye even today. Great, great TV. Tightly edited stories, great character actors (John Anderson, John Dehner, Peter Whitney) and superb supporting cast. Paul Fix as Micah was a treasure ... boy, great memories of a great show.

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Like so many other actors, I discovered Paul Fix and Ray Teal on TV before I became aware of their long movie careers (Richard Boone and Walter Brennan are two more). Besides discovering new talent it introduced us ?TV tykes? to a lot of older ones. Seeing Lorne Greene popping up in Peyton Place and The Buccaneer was another surprise I remember.

 

That great theme is no accident; it was one of many by the 4-Star in-house composer Herschel Burke Gilbert who never failed to deliver no matter what the genre. I wish I had the LP that was released with all of them on it. I?ve seen the Dana Andrews movie, Beyond a Reasonable Doubt, that he scored and wonder if he did any more. He needs to be much more recognized for his work than he is.

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Your astute comments make me want to give the show even more credit. I have, at times, found it overly sentimental; preachy. Not as literate as WAGON TRAIN or GUNSMOKE. But, as has been observed, the stories were short, to the point, and exceptionally well formatted. As a child, a TINY little cowboy fan, I positively loved it! And, yes, it was a positive influence. Something I could use even today. The creators of this fine western have something to be proud of.

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> {quote:title=CitySlicker wrote:}{quote}

> What WONDERFUL television *The Rifleman* was. My father died when I was a tyke, and I could relate to Mark, the son, in a certain way. Lucas was, in many ways, a father figure. His high morals and the way he doted over his son bring a tear to my eye even today. Great, great TV. Tightly edited stories, great character actors (John Anderson, John Dehner, Peter Whitney) and superb supporting cast. Paul Fix as Micah was a treasure ... boy, great memories of a great show.

 

City Slicker, I totally agree and can relate with your experiences. My father left us when I was 4, and I related to Mark (my first name too!) and yearned for a father figure, which I found in this show (along with a few others). It's a great show and I can't wait to see it when I get home every day!

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No question the story lines of *Gunsmoke* and *Wagon Train* were more developed and geared toward an adult audience. I think I learned to appreciate them more when I was a bit older (although I always loved *Wagon Train*). *Gunsmoke* was 60 minutes after Year 2 or 3, I think, and *Wagon Train* often was 90 minutes.

The half-hour format meant *The Rifleman* had to have a fast, fast pace ... But the acting was good, and the relationship between Crawford and Connors was truly excellent. Other than Opy and Andy on *The Andy Griffith Show*, I can't recall another father-son relationship on TV that appeared more genuine.

In any event, loved that show and often rewatch episodes I've seen countless times.

PS: I know one disc set of *Wagon Train* has been released on DVD, and I believe another is set to come out just before Christmas. It's one for my collection of TV/movie Westerns.

 

Edited by: CitySlicker on Dec 1, 2010 9:28 AM

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Thanks to NitrateVille I discovered that Johnny Crawford fronts a band that plays 20?s and 30?s style music and got to hear some. Who knew he had such a fine voice? Going back for more. Thought you'd all want to know.

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> {quote:title=CitySlicker wrote:}{quote}

> *Gunsmoke* was 60 minutes after Year 2 or 3, I think, and *Wagon Train* often was 90 minutes.

> The half-hour format meant *The Rifleman* had to have a fast, fast pace ... But the acting was good, and the relationship between Crawford and Connors was truly excellent. Other than Opy and Andy on *The Andy Griffith Show*, I can't recall another father-son relationship on TV that appeared more genuine.

> In any event, loved that show and often rewatch episodes I've seen countless times.

> PS: I know one disc set of *Wagon Train* has been released on DVD, and I believe another is set to come out just before Christmas. It's one for my collection of TV/movie Westerns.

>

> Edited by: CitySlicker on Dec 1, 2010 9:28 AM

 

Wagon Train episodes were 60 minutes long and in black and white for the first six seasons. Season-seven episodes ran 90 minutes and were shot in color. The series returned to 60-minute black-and-white episodes for season eight, its final season. Gunsmoke had six seasons of half-hour episodes before expanding to hourlong ones.

 

Wagon Train, by the way, will begin airing on Encore Westerns in January, starting with a 24-hour marathon Jan. 1.

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