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 »
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 <email@example.com>
Festus and Doc had a love-hate relationship. Festus would refer to Doc as "you ol' schutter you", and would often ask Doc to have a drink or share a last drink for the night, hoping the end result would be Doc paying for the drinks, because Festus would always have a reason to not have enough money to buy them both one. Festus tried doing the same relationship with the "sub" doc for the six episodes filling in, while in real-life, Doc was recovering from a heart attack, but the bond between Festus and Doc was too strong to replace, even for the short amount of time Doc (Stone) was out. See more »
Most of the social, racial and political attitudes expressed by the characters during the series reflect the 1950s thru 1970s airing of the series rather than its 1870s/1880s setting. See more »
[the teaser of the very first episode, "Matt Gets It."]
Good evening. My name's Wayne. Some of you may have seen me before. I hope so. I've been kicking around Hollywood a long time. I've made a lot of pictures out here. All kinds. Some of them have been westerns and that's what I'm here to tell you about tonight. A western. A new television show called "Gunsmoke". When I first heard about the show "Gunsmoke", I knew there was only one man to play in it. James Arness. He's a young fellow, and ...
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The best of the series is the first five years when John Meston did most of the writing. He had a real feel of, what I perceive to be, the Old West to be really like. He did not go in for all of the frivolousness of later episodes. He did not rely on loud talking and grandiose brashness by the actors.
People in the earlier episodes gave the impression that they were ordinary, hard working people who barely eked a living out of a hard land. They did what they had to do to get by, out on the lonely Kansas plains. When they met disaster, it was "implied" on screen and the viewer could use his imagination as to what happened. Those shows did not have all of the "Hollywood" glitz that pervaded later episodes.
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