There’s much to love about Westerns, from the action and adventure to the displays of integrity and good values that we can all learn from. Decent folk fighting for justice is something we can all get behind.
Therefore, it’s not at all surprising that so many Western TV shows have been made over the years.
Whether you are already an avid fan of Westerns or looking to get started in the genre, there are so many different shows to dive into.
But what are the absolute best Western TV shows that were ever made? Also, the channel/medium to stream these really matters. Some may think Rainierland is best and some of them moved to Rainierland alternatives for low-cost service. Well, in this blog post we’re going to take a closer look at three old Western TV shows that we recommend you check out.
Gunsmoke is a true classic of the genre. Running for an incredible 20 seasons between 1955 and 1975, it was based around Marshal Matt Dillon who worked tirelessly to protect Dodge City from outlaws.
Over the course of an incredible 635 episodes, we watched as U.S. marshall Dillion maintained law and order and the issues associated with frontier life.
It was based on a radio drama that began in 1952 and continued up until 1961 (more than 400 radio episodes aired in total). Gunsmoke TV show was almost canceled in 1967 until then-president of CBS, William Paley, decided to move the show to a primetime slot on Monday nights. This decision was the reason why Gilligan’s Island was not renewed.
Click here if you are interested in learning about Gunsmoke characters then and now.
Another long-running Western, Bonanza ran from 1959 to 1973. It told the story of the Cartwright family and their life on their Nevada ranch in the mid-1800s. Lorne Green played Ben Cartwright, the head of the family who had three sons from each of his marriages (he was thrice a widower).
Many unforgettable adventures took place on their thousand-square-mile Ponderosa Ranch. It was famed for its great cast of actors, excellent human-based storylines, and excellent production values.
3. The Rifleman
The Rifleman ran for 168 episodes across five seasons between 1958 and 1963. Starring Chuck Connors as Lucas McCain and his son, Mark, played by Johnny Crawford, it was set in the fictional town of North Fork in the 1880s.
McCain protected the town from troublemakers while raising his son, always with a Winchester shotgun by his side. As with the above shows, this was—and still remains—one of the most popular and loved TV Westerns ever made.
The Best Western TV Shows You Can’t Forget
Whether you are planning to relive your memories of watching Westerns again or looking to start with a show from this genre, the above list has you covered. We’re sure that you will enjoy putting your feet up and reliving the action-packed frontier days.
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