The Cannon family runs the High Chaparral Ranch in the Arizona Territory in 1870s. Big John wants to establish his cattle empire despite Indian hostility. He's aided by brother Buck and son... See full summary »
The Cannon family runs the High Chaparral Ranch in the Arizona Territory in 1870s. Big John wants to establish his cattle empire despite Indian hostility. He's aided by brother Buck and son Billy Blue. When Blue's mother was killed (in the first episode) John united his family with the powerful Montoyas by marrying their daughter Victoria (whose brother Manolito now lives with them as well). Written by
Ed Stephan <email@example.com>
[Explaining to a cowboy why he pulled a hidden gun]
I whole lot rather be watchin' them put you in the ground and have folks sayin' 'That Buck Cannon, he don't fight fair' than to have 'Here lies Buck Cannon, he fought fair' on my tombstone.
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I remember The High Chaparral from when I was a child and rediscovered it as an adult from reruns. What is most noticeable about THC as opposed to other TV westerns are two things; it was actually filmed outdoors instead of on a soundstage, unlike large chunks of other TV westerns such as Rawhide and Gunsmoke and especially The Big Valley. Because of this the show and the actors have an authentic dirty and sweaty look to them appropriate to the period and place. I mean hey, cattle ranching in Arizona now is hard, sweaty and dirty, think about how is was before running water. The other thing I liked about it is that not only did the recurring characters not always get along, some of them flat out just didn't like each other. Kind of like in the real world and unlike other TV westerns. These distinctive features along with superb acting, writing, and technical work (just watching the shows makes me want to sweat) adds to up to one heck of a show.
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