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Don 'Red' Barry
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Bronco was a western television series that got rushed to market when Clint Walker walked out on Cheyenne during a contract dispute with Warner Brothers. It's star was one Orville Whipple Hungerford, III, better known to us kids as Ty Hardin.
Hardin certainly didn't have the looming presence of 6'6" Clint Walker as Cheyenne, but he was a more than adequate western hero. Bronco Lane was a wanderer and in the course of this Confederate veteran's western wanderings he ran into a whole lot of famous true western legends. Warner Brothers was doing something that all the studios did with their westerns back in the day, mixed their cowboy heroes with stories real western personalities.
When Clint Walker came back and Cheyenne resumed production, Bronco was sort of like a spare tire that became a fifth wheel in the Warner Brothers western shows. It was on for a few seasons and dropped. It's star got a few good movie roles and then dropped out of sight.
Years ago I read that Hardin got involved in some really far right wing politics. I mean John Birch Society style right wing. I'm not sure if that drove casting directors to pass him by or did he get involved in that blaming his fading career on the Communists. Either way it's kind of a sad story.
But I still remember that theme song, "Bronco, Bronco, Tearing Across The Texas Plains, Bronco, Bronco, Bronco Lane."
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