Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color: Season 5, Episode 5

Texas John Slaughter (31 Oct. 1958)
"Disneyland" Texas John Slaughter (original title)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Biography | Drama
8.2
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 12 users  
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Texas John Slaughter arrives in the town of Friotown and soon finds himself attacked by two gunmen, who he is forced to kill in self-defense. It turns out that the outlaws thought Slaughter... See full summary »

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Title: Texas John Slaughter (31 Oct 1958)

Texas John Slaughter (31 Oct 1958) on IMDb 8.2/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
...
Robert Middleton ...
Frank Davis
Norma Moore ...
...
Judson Pratt ...
Capt. Cooper
...
Jed
...
Lease Harris (credit only)
Leo Gordon ...
Bill
John Daheim ...
Pvt. Jeff Clay (as John Day)
John Alderson ...
Sgt. Duncan MacGregor
Chris Alcaide ...
Henchman
Robert F. Hoy ...
Texas Ranger (as Robert Hoy)
Chuck Roberson ...
Texas Ranger
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Storyline

Texas John Slaughter arrives in the town of Friotown and soon finds himself attacked by two gunmen, who he is forced to kill in self-defense. It turns out that the outlaws thought Slaughter was Texas Ranger Ben Jenkins. Impressed with Slaughter's gun-handling skills, the Rangers offer him a position, but he turns them down, as he wants to set up a cattle ranch. However, his plans are put on hold by the actions of a murderous outlaw gang leader named Frank Davis. Written by frankfob2@yahoo.com

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Release Date:

31 October 1958 (USA)  »

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(RCA Sound Recording)

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

ABC originally broadcast this episode in black and white. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Disney western with a twist
20 March 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"With Texas John Slaugher, men did what they oughter, 'cause if they didn't, they died!"

And, with that opening, Tom Tryon carved his most memorable character as an actor. It's typically Disney in style, and pretty standard western story telling. However, many of the story lines are loosely based upon a real Sheriff of Southern Arizona by the same name."Texas John" Slaughter was a Civil War veteran, trail-driver, cattleman, Texas Ranger, Cochise County (Arizona) Sheriff, professional gambler, and an Arizona State Representative during his lifetime. He died at the age of 80. Slaughter was known as a quiet and reserved character. He was five feet six inches tall, with dark eyes and occasional stutter. Slaughter seemed intent on making a name for himself. After years of driving cattle in Texas, Slaughter eventually settled south of Tombstone, Arizona, and bought the 65,000 acre San Bernardino Ranch near Douglas in 1884 that stretched all the way to the Mexican border and employed 30 families. It was during this period that he was elected and served as one of the most successful sheriffs in Arizona history.

Of course, many of the Disney Slaughter episodes played on this history, and emphasize Slaughter's effective methods of tracking and arresting outlaws using stealth and planning while keeping his cattle ranch running. However, Tom Tryon at six feet three inches obviously makes the role and Disney character his own. There are many liberties taken with the original history. And, that is somewhat unfortunate, because, as a character, Texas John Slaughter was one of the most colorful and unusual of the Old West period. His skill and effectiveness as sheriff made him a legend in his own right. Therefore, it is strange indeed that someone with Slaughter's amazing law enforcement techniques became entirely overshadowed by a nearby 30 second gun battle at a place called the OK Coral in a no name cow town called Tombstone.

Someday someone other than Disney may contribute a real film history in honor of this American legend. But, for now at least, the Tom Tryon episodes give some glimmer of how southern Arizona was tamed by a short, but dedicated sheriff that legend has it, sometimes accepted the quiet surrender of criminals who simply did not want to tangle with a man they knew they couldn't beat.


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