Western stories and legends based, and filmed, in and around Death Valley, California. One of the longest-running Western series, originating on radio in the 1930s. The continuing sponsor was "20 Mule Team" Borax, a product formerly mined in Death Valley.
Agent Jim Hardie shifts over its history from being mostly an Agent helping Wells Fargo cope with bad guys, to being the owner of a ranch near San Francisco, California, who still does some... See full summary »
Powell served as host and, in early shows at least, occasional star in this dramatic anthology. It was his last television series and contained his last filmed acting (episode: 'The ... See full summary »
This show was originally developed to be adaptations of short stories and novels by Western author Zane Grey. However, the material ran out (the books were far too long for a half-hour show), and later original material was commissioned. See more »
For syndicated rerun release, the introductions and wrap-ups by Powell, Dick (q.v.) were replaced with new ones featuring Keenan Wynn, and the program was retitled "The Westerners." See more »
I remember seeing this show in syndication years ago as a child and teenager, and I had no idea Mr. Powell had had such a diverse career. Starting out as a crooner in Busby Berkeley musicals in the 1930's, evolving into a star in film noir, and then transitioning to television in a number of shows including this one from the golden age of TV westerns in the 1950's. He was in good company with other stars such as Robert Montgomery, who hosted his own first-rate TV show in the 1950's.
This show is not really a series. Instead it was in the mold of the weekly playhouse kind of show that was so popular in the 1950's. Each episode stood alone and featured different stars each week, some being quite popular figures from the silver screen. The show first used material from Zane Grey, but as time passed material had to come from elsewhere as well. The following is a listing of the episodes of the first season as well as the stars that were featured. Why do I have this list? Because I have the first season on DVD. Hopefully this list will give you an idea of the talent involved.
1.01 - You Only Run Once - Robert Ryan, Cloris Leachman
1.02 - Fearful Courage - James Whitmore, Ida Lupino
1.03 - The Long Road Home - Mr. Powell, Ray Collins
1.04 - The Unrelenting Sky - Lew Ayres, Phyllis Avery
1.05 - The Lariat - Jack Palance, Constance Ford
1.06 - Death Watch - Lee J. Cobb, BobbyDriscoll
1.07 - Stage for Tucson - Eddie Albert, Mona Freeman
1.08 - Quiet Sunday in San Ardo - Wendell Corey, Gerald Mohr
1.09 - Vengeance Canyon - Walter Brennan, Ben Cooper
1.10 - Return to Nowhere - John Ireland, Steven McNally
1.11 - Courage is a Gun - Mr. Powell, Beverly Garland
1.12 - Muletown Gold Strike - Rory Calhoun, Barbara Eiler
1.13 - Stars over Texas - Ralph Bellamy, Gloria Talbott, James Garner
1.14 - Three Graves - Jack Lemmon, Nan Leslie
1.15 - No Man Living - Frank Lovejoy, Margaret Hayes
1.16 - Time of Decision - Lloyd Bridges, Diane Brewster
1.17 - Until the Man Dies -Stuart Whitman, John Payne
1.18 - Backtrail - Mr. Powell, Catherine McLeod
1.19 - Dangerous Orders - Jack Elam, Mark Stevens
1.20 - The Necessary Breed - Sterling Hayden, Jean Willes
1.21 - Village of Fear -David Niven, George D. Wallace
1.22 - Black Creek Encounter- Ernest Borgnine, Jan Merlin
1.23 - There Were Four - John Derek, Dean Jagger
1.24 - Fugitive - Eddie Albert, Celeste Holm
1.25 - A Time To Live - Ralph Meeker, Julie London
1.26 - Black is for Grief - Mary Astor, Beulah Bondi, Chester Morris
1.27 - Badge of Honor - Gary Merrill, Tom Tully, Robert Culp
1.28 - Decision at Wilson's Creek -John Forsythe, John Dehner
1.29 - Man on the Run - Scott Brady, Nancy Hale
Each episode is 30 minutes in length and features such diverse talent as James Garner at the beginning of his career and Chester Morris near the end of his career. Mr. Powell does appear in some episodes, as you can see from the listing of season one above. Highly recommended if you like the old westerns of the 1950's.
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