Gunsmoke (1955–1975)

TV Series  |  TV-PG  |   |  Western
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Reviews: 27 user | 46 critic

Marshal Matt Dillon keeps the peace in the rough and tumble Dodge City.

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Airs Mon. Oct. 12, 1:00 PM on TVLAND


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20   19   18   17   16   15   14   13   12   … See all »
1975   1974   1973   1972   1971   1970   … See all »
Nominated for 4 Golden Globes. Another 15 wins & 20 nominations. See more awards »
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Complete series cast summary:
 Matt Dillon (635 episodes, 1955-1975)
 Doc / ... (604 episodes, 1955-1975)
 Kitty / ... (568 episodes, 1955-1974)
 Festus / ... (304 episodes, 1959-1975)
 Chester / ... (290 episodes, 1955-1964)


Marshal Matt Dillon is in charge of Dodge City, a town in the wild west where people often have no respect for the law. He deals on a daily basis with the problems associated with frontier life: cattle rustling, gunfights, brawls, standover tactics, and land fraud. Such situations call for sound judgement and brave actions: of which Marshal Dillon has plenty. Written by Murray Chapman <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




TV-PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

10 September 1955 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Marshal Dillon  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)


(1955-1966)| (1966-1975)

Aspect Ratio:

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Did You Know?


James Arness received his draft notice in 1943 and trained at Camp Wheeler, Georgia, before shipping out for North Africa. He was assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division in time for the invasion of Anzio. Ten days after the invasion, Arness was severely wounded in the leg and foot by machine-gun fire. His wounds: he lost part of his foot: it plagued him the rest of his life. The injury made it difficult for him to walk for extended stretches, when shooting movies or TV shows, any scenes that required extensive walking would be shot early in the morning, before his feet and knees started giving out. The wounds resulted in his medical discharge from the army. He received the Bronze Star; the Purple Heart; the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with three bronze campaign stars; the World War II Victory Medal and the Combat Infantryman Badge for his service See more »


Festus Haggen: Don't you think somebody oughta reckon with him, Matthew?
U.S. Marshal Matt Dillon: What did you say his name was again, Festus?
Festus Haggen: I think its Sinclair... Jack Sinclair.
U.S. Marshal Matt Dillon: He's got no left hand?
Festus Haggen: That's right. Anyways, don't you think somebody ought to go reckon with him?
U.S. Marshal Matt Dillon: No!
Festus Haggen: Why not, Matthew?
U.S. Marshal Matt Dillon: Because it was my bullet that took his hand!
See more »


Referenced in Law & Order: Castoff (1998) See more »


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User Reviews

Matt Dillon was a hero in the truest since of the word.
26 October 2002 | by (Atlanta, Georgia) – See all my reviews

Having Tivo (a system that records programs automatically) has re-introduced Gunsmoke to me. I was a young boy when it began in the 1950's. I loved the early shows. The 1962 shows are being aired on TV Land right now and I have about a dozen recorded for future viewing. I wanted to make an observation about James Arness's character, Matt Dillon. He was my hero growing up and watching the show. After seeing the shows again, 40 years later, I know why. Matt was justice. He meted out retribution to those who were evil. Here he was, standing 6 feet seven inches with a voice like God.

Watching Matt save the day in episode after episode made me realize how great it would to have a Matt around today: someone who would stand up to the bully, step in a wield his gun at the villains taking advantage of anyone in sight. I guess we all had heroes, but who could ever match James Arness. He was fair, gentle, understanding, but had the strength and skill to ward off any foe.

I miss Matt Dillon. We won't see his like again. Even Clint Eastwood, with his Dirty Harry justice, did not have the depth of Matt with his combination of gunplay and compassion.

64 of 73 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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