The Young Riders (1989–1992)

TV Series  |   |  Romance, Western
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The adventures of the riders of the Pony Express.


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3   2   1   Unknown  
1992   1991   1990   1989  
Won 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 4 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »
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Complete series cast summary:
 William F. Cody (67 episodes, 1989-1992)
 James Butler Hickok (67 episodes, 1989-1992)
 The Kid (67 episodes, 1989-1992)
Gregg Rainwater ...
 Running Buck Cross (67 episodes, 1989-1992)
 Louise McCloud (67 episodes, 1989-1992)
 Teaspoon Hunter (67 episodes, 1989-1992)
 Ike McSwain (51 episodes, 1989-1991)
 Noah Dixon (43 episodes, 1990-1992)
Clare Wren ...
 Rachel Dunne (43 episodes, 1990-1992)
 Marshal Sam Cain (24 episodes, 1989-1990)
 Emma Shannon (24 episodes, 1989-1990)
Don Collier ...
 William Tompkins, Shop Keeper / ... (24 episodes, 1989-1992)
 Jesse James (21 episodes, 1991-1992)


Set just before the American Civil War, this series presented a highly fictionalized account of the heyday of the Pony Express. Its focus was a group of young Express riders based at the waystation in Sweetwater, Kansas. Running the station was ex-Texas Ranger and all-around eccentric Teaspoon Hunter. The role of cook, housekeeper and mother hen was filled first by Emma and later by Rachel. The riders included the future "Buffalo Bill" Cody and James Butler ("Wild Bill") Hickok, as well as Ike, a mute, Buck, a half-White/half-Kiowa scout and the Kid, a quiet Southerner. Their final member was Lou, a young woman who lived and worked with the riders disguised as a boy. In second season, their group was joined by Noah Dixon. Written by Marg Baskin <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Romance | Western





Release Date:

20 September 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

I ragazzi della prateria  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The Pony Express operated for only 18 months. It greatly reduced the time it took for messages to reach from the east coast to the west coast. However, the invention of the telegraph soon followed. See more »

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User Reviews

Wonderful cast, unforgettable show
25 September 1999 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

I cannot calculate how many hours I have spent watching this show. You only have to check out the fan sites on the internet to see its impact. This must be one of the best (and best-looking) casts ever assembled. Josh Brolin is intense, sexy and magical as 'James Butler Hickock'. Anthony Zerbe hits just the right note as the wise but eccentric 'Teaspoon'. Ty Miller as 'Kid' is sincere and appealing. Gregg Rainwater plays the sensitive 'Buck', a half-breed torn between two worlds but belonging to none. Travis Fine is remarkable as 'Ike', a bald mute. Could any other actor have pulled off such a role? Brett Cullen is the handsome and fair marshal 'Sam Cain', if only he had stayed beyond season 1! Yvonne Suhor gives and amazing and sympathetic portrayal of 'Louise McLoud', a scared but strong woman trying to make it in a man's world by disguising her femininity. Don Franklin plays the intelligent, funny, but frustrated 'Noah Dickson' - who is very far from the usual stereotypical portrayal of blacks in westerns. Chris Pettiet plays 'Jesse James' at 14, a boy anxious to grow up and be a man but badly needing guidance and a sense of family. The comic relief is provided by Stephen Baldwin who gets all the best lines as the obnoxious but endearing 'William F. Cody' (although you may more often than not be laughing at him, not with him). The first housekeeper was 'Emma Shannon' (Melissa Leo), a woman trying to make it in the west after being deserted by her husband. She becomes a mother figure for the riders, something that most of them were lacking. Later came Clare Wren who played the sexy 'Rachel Dunne' who was a lot tougher and wiser than she looked. Well I don't think I missed anyone out. The show also had fantastic guest stars, excellent shoot-outs, and showed the conflicts that were developing between the north and the south at that time. It also showed the true meaning of love and friendship. It was wonderfully shot and had just the right blend of drama, action, and humor. I guess if you've read this far you already know and love the show. Why not write your own comments here? Oh, and "Try a little Jimmyness".

16 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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