Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Betty Hutton Show (1960)

The Betty Hutton Show was a last-ditch effort by one of the most popular movie stars of the early 1950s to revive a career she had herself torpedoed and then continued to sabotage by a combination of poor choices, arrogant attitude, and substance abuse. Though the show was co-produced by Desilu Productions, Hutton had to put up her own money to actually get the show made. The basic premise of the show is set up in the pilot "Goldie Crosses the Tracks," which aired October 1, 1959. Goldie Appleby is a down-to-earth manicurist and former showgirl living with two roommates, Lorna and Rosemary. Like Hutton, Goldie is no intellectual and lacks social refinement, but she has common sense and isn't afraid to take the bull by the horns, a trait that impresses one of her regular clients, Mr. Strickland, a wealthy widower businessman with three children Nicky, Pat, and Roy. When Strickland has trouble managing his entitled children, Goldie makes some suggestions on how to be firm with them, which he appreciates and follows. He is so impressed that he later makes her the sole executor of his estate after conferring with family lawyer Howard Seaton. Then he suddenly and inexplicably dies in his office, and Goldie learns from Seaton that she has been made executor and controller of his estate and is to live with the three children at his lavish mansion. The pilot then mines the usual ironic humor when low-brow meets high-brow, with Goldie showing up in a garish outfit and showing a complete lack of manners, which instantly turns off the two elder children, Nicky and Pat. But the youngest, Roy, immediately accepts her, and in subsequent episodes Goldie is able to win over the other two children as well. Still, the show continues to mine its singular comic refrain of the gullible and unsophisticated Goldie trying to fit in and match wits with wilier adversaries and then ultimately prevailing. 

In "Love Comes to Goldie" (January 7, 1960) she decides to cut off Strickland's do-nothing relatives from their regular allowances, only to be smitten by the charms of one of them, Sebastian Strickland, who is chosen by the other relatives to woo and marry Goldie to regain control of the estate. She remains under his spell up until the point of his proposal, when she serendipitously discovers an unflattering portrait he had sketched of her that reveals what he truly thinks of her. Likewise, in "Gullible Goldie" (March 31, 1960) she is hoodwinked by a couple of con artists who are pretending to be running a home for orphans and even raises $20,000 for them until Seaton does a background check into their criminal history, allowing Goldie to confront them and force them to open and run a real orphanage in order to receive the money. Only this time the ending of the story is left a bit ambiguous as the couple agrees to her terms but then give a kind of wink at the camera before the credits roll. 

While the theme of the uneducated rube taking the more sophisticated to school has been employed to good effect in many films and TV series, including Hutton's contemporary The Andy Griffith Show and later series such as The Beverly Hillbillies and Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C., it fails horribly on The Betty Hutton Show because of a lack of good scripts and poor direction. The plots of the above-mentioned episodes and the others reviewed for this post are completely formulaic--there are no surprises, every supposed twist is telegraphed miles ahead. But even worse is the way the lines and characters are played--actors stare into space or mug to the camera while delivering their lines rather than interacting with each other, further exaggerating the artificiality of the narrative. This style of acting presentation may have worked in the kind of musical comedies that made Hutton a star in the 1940s and '50s, but by 1960 audiences favored a more naturalistic approach seen in shows such as The Andy Griffith Show

And the stories on Betty Hutton are ripe with sentimentality: in "Roy Runs Away" (January 21, 1960), Goldie punishes Roy for getting into a fight at school by withholding three weeks' allowance. Taking the advice of his friend Steve, Roy threatens to run away, which upsets Goldie until the family butler Hollister assures her that Roy is bluffing. When Goldie refuses to bend to Roy's threat, he is forced to carry it out, eventually taking a taxi to a hotel and trying to register for a room. He finally gives up and tries to return home but sees Goldie gathering his belongings in the front room after agreeing with his Aunt Louise that perhaps Roy doesn't like Goldie and would be better off with his aunt in Boston. Roy then believes that Goldie doesn't like him. When Roy breaks down in tears to Aunt Louise and Goldie overhears his confession, the two suddenly realizes it was all a big misunderstanding and lock each other in a tearful embrace. Such tear-jerking narratives were obviously popular at the time, since several other shows used them as well, but they weren't enough to save The Betty Hutton Show from an early demise after only 30 episodes, since the show had little else going for it and had a tough time-slot competitor in The Donna Reed Show, then airing on ABC. 

But regardless of which shows it was stacked up against, it's unlikely The Betty Hutton Show would have lasted any longer than it did, done in by a combination of unoriginal scripts, bad acting direction, and a star who had peaked almost a decade earlier. Hutton would have only a few more TV appearances before being driven to Las Vegas and then the beneficence of a Rhode Island Catholic priest, as detailed in her biography below. Her quick exit from the 1960 TV landscape was perhaps another example of the changing times, a rejection of styles and stars from the old days that also swept away shows featuring Ann Sothern, Tom Ewell, and Barbara Stanwyck by the spring of 1961.

The theme and several episode scores for The Betty Hutton Show were composed by Jerry Fielding, born Joshua Itzhak Feldman in Pittsburgh. He played clarinet in his school band and was offered a scholarship to attend the Carnegie Institute for Instrumentalists but was forced to withdraw due to ill health. Once recovered, he landed a spot in the house band for the Stanley Theater under the tutelage of Max Adkins, known as a developer of prodigious talent that included the likes of Henry Mancini, Billy Strayhorn, and Neal Hefti. Fielding finally left Pittsburgh with the Alvino Rey band and never returned. From there he landed arranging jobs with many of the big band superstars, including Tommy Dorsey, Les Brown, Charlie Barnet, and Jimmie Lunceford. Eventually he moved to the west coast when he was hired by Kay Kyser for his radio program, which led to work on other radio shows as well. He was forced to change his name to Fielding when he was hired for The Jack Paar Program because Feldman was considered too Jewish. In 1948 he replaced fellow Pittsburgher Billy May on Groucho Marx's radio version of You Bet Your Life and remained with the program when it made the move to television in 1951. He also had his own all-music program The Jerry Fielding Show in 1952 but soon thereafter was blacklisted after refusing to name fellow members of the Hollywood Writers Mobilization organization when brought before the House Un-American Activities Committee. Through the remainder of the 1950s his only work in Hollywood was a handful of episodes of the William Bendix comedy The Life of Riley until he was hired for The Betty Hutton Show. He made do during these lean years by playing in Las Vegas and recording several now collectible record albums. The blacklist on Fielding was finally lifted in 1961 and he returned to prolific TV work on Peter Loves Mary and The Tom Ewell Show. In 1962 he was given his first feature film scoring assignments, most memorably for Otto Preminger's Advise and Consent. From that point forward until his death in 1980, he worked steadily, writing the scores for well-known TV shows such as McHale's Navy, Hogan's Heroes, and The Bionic Woman, as well as the memorable Star Trek episode "The Trouble With Tribbles." His work on feature films began to really take off in the late 1960s, beginning with Sam Peckinpaugh's The Wild Bunch, for which he received an Oscar nomination. In the 1970s he would receive Oscar nominations for his work on Straw Dogs and The Outlaw Josey Wales, and in 1980 he received an Emmy for his work on High Midnight. He died at age 57 from congestive heart failure on February 17, 1980 while working in Toronto on the film Funeral Home.

Presently only four episodes of The Betty Hutton Show (one from 1959, the other three from 1960) have been released on a single DVD by Alpha Video. These four and a few more are currently also available on The video quality for all of these episodes is poor.

The Actors

Betty Hutton

Elizabeth June Thornburg was born in Battle Creek, Michigan, the daughter of a railroad worker and his wife. Betty's father abandoned the family when she was only 2 and committed suicide 16 years later. Her mother supported the family by selling bootleg liquor at a speakeasy during Prohibition. It was there that Betty and her older sister June began their singing careers to entertain customers. June would go on to become the female vocalist for the Glenn Miller Orchestra from 1938 to 1942. Always on the run from the law, Betty and her family eventually relocated to Detroit, where her mother found work in an auto assembly factory. Determined to break into show business, Betty moved to New York at age 15 but was told she would never make it and returned home, where she was discovered by orchestra leader Vincent Lopez a year later singing in a nightclub. She was able to work her role as a singer into appearances in a few of musical shorts from 1938-1940, which brought her to the attention of Broadway producer and co-founder of Capitol Records Buddy DeSylva. DeSylva cast her in his production Two for the Show and then as the second female lead in Panama Hattie beneath Ethel Merman, whom, according to Hutton's autobiography, insisted on cutting some of Hutton's songs from the production. DeSylva consoled Hutton by taking her with him when he took over production at Paramount Studios, casting her in The Fleet's In and Star Spangled Rhythm in 1942. From there her star rose rapidly in films like The Miracle of Morgan's Creek, The Perils of Pauline, and her best-remembered role in the lead of Annie Get Your Gun. But despite being named Best Actress in a 1950 reader's poll for Photoplay magazine and being ranked the top box office attraction by Variety two years later, Hutton developed a reputation as being difficult to work with, and in 1952 while working on The Greatest Show on Earth she began taking Dexamil to deal with the stress of making the movie, her weight, and the failure of her first marriage to camera maker Ted Briskin. Later that year, after making Somebody Loves Me and marrying choreographer Charles O'Curran, Hutton walked out of her contract with Paramount when they refused to let O'Curran direct her next film, essentially ending her film career. She had an opportunity to revive it when offered the part of Ado Annie for the film version of Oklahoma, but she turned it down for NBC's 1954 nationally broadcast color production, Satins and Spurs, developed specifically for her but which proved to be a flop. She appeared in only one more film, Spring Reunion, in 1957 before Desilu offered her a chance at her own TV show, which lasted only 30 episodes, ending in 1960.

That same year she married for the fourth and final time to jazz trumpeter Pete Candoli, but the marriage lasted only two years, though the couple had a daughter Carolyn. She had a few TV guest spots in the 1960s on The Greatest Show on Earth, Burke's Law, and Gunsmoke and had signed a new contract with Paramount for two westerns in 1967 but was fired before either was produced. She had occasional appearances in Las Vegas, filled in for Carol Burnett and Alice Ghostley in a couple of Broadway productions, then wound up in Rhode Island in the 1970s, where she was allowed to live in a Catholic rectory by Father Peter Maguire. Despite never finishing the 9th grade, Hutton returned to school and eventually earned a Master's Degree from Salve Regina University and taught acting at Boston-based Emerson College. According to Carl Bruno, who with Michael Mayer "finished" Hutton's autobiography when she gave up on it, Maguire at times found Hutton too much to handle and would send her to California to live with Bruno and his partner Lutheran minister Gene Arnaiz. From 1974 till 1996 Hutton would be shuttled back and forth between Rhode Island and California. In 1999 she finally settled in Palm Springs, California, where she lived until her death from colon cancer at the age of 86 on March 11, 2007.

Gigi Perreau

Ghislaine Elizabeth Marie Perreau-Saussine was born in Los Angeles, the daughter of a French father and American mother. She broke into acting at the age of 2 when her mother brought her along to an audition for her older brother, Peter Miles, for the film Madame Curie. When director Mervyn LeRoy learned that she could speak both French and English at such a young age, he cast her as Greer Garson's daughter. She was thereafter signed to MGM and eventually moved over to Universal, appearing in several movies per year throughout the 1940s and '50s, such as God Is My Co-Pilot, Green Dolphin Street, My Foolish Heart, Bonzo Goes to College, and The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit. Her work in television began in the early '50s, first on drama anthologies and then on series such as Mayor of the Town, The Donna Reed Show, and Alfred Hitchcock Presents. Her role as Pat Strickland on The Betty Hutton Show was her first regular TV role, but a year after the show ended she landed another recurring spot as secretary Kathy Richards on Follow the Sun, which also lasted a single season. Still, she found plenty of work guest starring on shows such as Perry Mason, Rawhide, The Rifleman, and Lassie, with her last role coming in a 1974 episode of Adam-12. These days she teaches acting at Immaculate Heart High School, is Vice-President of the Drama Teachers Association of Southern California, and serves on the boards of both The Donna Reed Foundation and the Will Geer Theatricum Botanicum. She says she is also working on an autobiography but won't be able to finish it until she is no longer working full time.

Peter Miles

Gerald Richard Perreau-Saussine, older brother of Gigi Perreau, was born in Tokyo but grew up in Los Angeles. As mentioned in his sister's biography above, Miles tried out for a part in the 1943 film Madame Curie at the age of 5 but was not chosen for the part. His film debut would come a year later playing Humphrey Bogart's son in Passage to Marseille. Like his sister, he was signed to MGM and had a steady career through the 1940s and into the 1950s in such films as Family Honeymoon, The Red Pony, Roseanna McCoy, and Quo Vadis, sometimes billed as Gerald Perreau in his early years.TV appearances followed, starting in the mid-1950s on shows such as Father Knows Best, Dragnet, Perry Mason, and Maverick before being cast as Nicky Strickland on The Betty Hutton Show. But once the show ended he gave up his acting career to pursue a career in writing. Two of his novels were made into movies--They Saved Hitler's Brain and That Cold Day in the Park, which was directed by Robert Altman. He and his sister ran a successful art gallery in Los Angeles, and he authored several catalogs of work by Japanese wood block artists. He also taught school and served as the President of the Burbank Teachers Association. He died from cancer at the age of 64 on August 3, 2002.

Dennis Olivieri

Virtually no biographical information is available for Dennis Joel Olivieri, not even a birth date. His first credited role, as Dennis Joel, was playing Roy Strickland on The Betty Hutton Show. In 1960 he also appeared in the Disney feature film Toby Tyler, or Ten Weeks With a Circus, an episode of Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color, as well as episodes of The Deputy and The DuPont Show With June Allyson. After The Betty Hutton Show ended, he continued to get a few guest spots on TV shows for the duration of the 1960s, including Bachelor Father, Leave It to Beaver, and Family Affair.  In 1968 he released a music album titled Come to the Party on the tiny VMC label and produced by Tandyn Almer, who wrote the Association's first hit "Along Comes Mary." In 1969 he scored a regular role as Stanley Gabriel on the Aaron Spelling college-age kids starting over on an island series The New People, which lasted only one season. He continued working sporadically through the 1970s with occasional appearances on TV shows such as Owen Marshall, Counselor at Law and Love Story as well as off-beat feature films such as The Naked Ape, The Centerfold Girls, and the rock opera Phantom of the Paradise. His last credit was the 1980 camp musical Forbidden Zone, which also included Danny Elfman playing Satan.

Tom Conway

Thomas Charles Sanders was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, the son of a wealthy rope-maker, though his family was forced to flee back to England during the Russian Revolution. After completing college, Conway moved to Northern Rhodesia and worked in the mining and ranching businesses until he became frustrated by his lack of success and returned to England to work as an engineer in a carburetor factory and selling safety glass. He was encouraged to join a small theatre repertory group and eventually joined the Manchester Repertory Company and found work on BBC radio. His brother, actor George Sanders, persuaded him to come to Hollywood, though to avoid confusion between them, Conway was forced to change his last name. He became a contract player for MGM, appearing in such films as Tarzan's Secret Treasure, Mr. and Mrs. North, and Mrs. Miniver before getting his big break thanks to his brother. George Sanders had grown tired of playing The Falcon for RKO and thus had it arranged in The Falcon's Brother to have his character killed off by Nazis and the torch handed off to his brother playing the character Tom Lawrence. Conway continued in the role for another 10 films while also appearing in horror movies such as Cat People, I Walked With a Zombie, and The Seventh Victim. In the 1950s he continued appearing in B-grade features like Bride of the Gorilla, Tarzan and the She-Devil, The She-Creature, and Voodoo Woman, but he also was cast in the title role as TV detective Mark Saber, which ran from 1951-53. In the late 1950s he began picking up guest spots on TV shows such as Rawhide, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, and Cheyenne before landing his role as lawyer Howard Seaton on The Betty Hutton Show. After a few more roles, voicework on 101 Dalmations, and appearances on Have Gun -- Will Travel and Perry Mason, Conway's alcoholism and a degenerative eye condition ruined his career. His second wife Queenie Leonard divorced him in 1963 and his brother broke off contact with him over his drinking. In 1965 he was discovered living in a flophouse and 2 years later after former sister-in-law Zsa Zsa Gabor gave him $200 to tip his nurses in the hospital, he checked out and took the money but expired at his girlfriend's house the next day due to cirrhosis of the liver at age 62 on April 22, 1967. Ironically, though Conway was forced to change his given name when he first landed in Hollywood to avoid confusion with his brother, his adopted name forced comedian Tim Conway to change his first name when he was getting started in show business.

Gavin Muir

Born in Chicago, Gavin Muir was educated in England, which helped him affect the British accent that made him perfectly suited for various villainous roles as well as the butler Hollister on The Betty Hutton Show. He began his acting career in regional theater but by 1920 had moved to Broadway and had his first role there in 1922's Enter Madame. Thereafter he had a prolific stage career at least through 1933, though he continued appearing in productions until 1939. After a brief uncredited appearance in a 1932 short, his Hollywood career began in earnest in 1936, most notably in John Ford's Mary of Scotland. He found steady work throughout the remainder of the 1930s and the 1940s, mostly in exploitation fare such as Charlie Chan at the Race Track, Hitler's Children, The Son of Dr. Jekyll, and several Sherlock Holmes features. In the early 1950s he began getting TV roles on series such as Dangerous Assignment, Biff Baker, U.S.A., and Alfred Hitchcock Presents. His stint on The Betty Hutton Show was his lone regular TV role and came at the end of his career. Afterward he appeared only in the eerie Dennis Hopper mermaid feature Night Tide and one episode of The Rogues in 1965. He died on May 24, 1972 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida at the age of 71.

Notable Guest Stars

Season 1, Episode 14, "Love Comes to Goldie": Maxwell Reed (shown on the right, appeared in Night Beat, Shadow of Fear, and Helen of Troy and played Capt. David Grief on Captain David Grief) plays Strickland family deadbeat Sebastian Strickland. 

Season 1, Episode 16, "Roy Runs Away": Norma Varden (shown on the left, appeared in National Velvet, Strangers on a Train, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Witness for the Prosecution, and Doctor Doolittle and played Harriet Johnson on Hazel) plays Strickland relative Aunt Louise. Don Grady (Robbie Douglas on My Three Sons) plays Roy's antagonist Joey Simpson. Darryl Richard (Smitty on The Donna Reed Show) plays Roy's friend Steve.
Season 1, Episode 18, "Goldie and the Tycoon": Mary Anderson (appeared in Gone With the Wind, The Song of Bernadette, and Lifeboat and played Catherine Harrington on Peyton Place) plays Strickland Enterprises chairman Miss Kingston.
Season 1, Episode 23, "The Seaton Story": Joyce Jameson (appeared in The Apartment, Tales of Terror, and The Comedy of Terrors) plays showgirl Beverly Bell. Antony Carbone (appeared in A Bucket of Blood, Last Woman on Earth, The Pit and the Pendulum, and Creature From the Haunted Sea) plays her boyfriend Al. Natalie Masters (Wilma Clemson on Date With the Angels and Mrs. Bergen on My Three Sons) plays Seaton's secretary.
Season 1, Episode 26, "Gullible Goldie": Robert Emhardt (shown on the right, played Sgt. Vinton on The Kids From C.A.P.E.R.) plays con artist Mr. Bleeker. Ellen Corby (shown on the left, played Henrietta Porter on Trackdown and Esther Walton on The Waltons) plays his wife.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Maverick (1960)

The year 1960 would prove to be the undoing of Maverick, at one time Warner Brothers' top-rated western series. Created by Roy Huggins, the show debuted in 1957 with Warners contract actor James Garner in the title role of poker playing drifter Bret Maverick. According to Garner's 2011 memoir, The Garner Files, Warners had wanted to cast him in the lead for their first western series Cheyenne but when the casting director couldn't get in touch with him, the part went to Clint Walker. Garner himself did not really want to be a TV actor but since he was under contract to Warners, he had little choice. When it became obvious that the 8-day production cycle for a single 60-minute episode made it impossible to deliver an episode every week, Warners created the character of Bart Maverick, Bret's brother, cast Jack Kelly in the role of Bart, and was able to work on two episodes simultaneously as they alternated back and forth between lead characters. Occasionally both brothers would appear in the same episode, such as "Maverick and Juliet" (January 17, 1960), but one of the brothers would be the dominant character and the other would show up briefly. In this case, Bret is the one who intervenes in the family feud plaguing the star-crossed lovers, suggesting a poker game as a way of solving the dispute, and Bart is brought in by the other family as their ringer in the poker game. 

The aforementioned episode demonstrates Garner's assertion that what made Maverick different from other westerns on the air at the time was that it was a comedy, though perhaps "farce" would be a more apt descriptor. Other "adult" westerns like Gunsmoke and Have Gun -- Will Travel certainly had their comic elements, but the overall tone of most plots was fairly serious, often deadly serious. Occasionally these series and others like Wagon Train would slip in a humorous-themed episode, but usually the humor would fall flat, indicating that these series were best when sticking to their dramatic roots. The principals in Maverick often find themselves in life-threatening situations but manage to escape often through an unlikely turn of events, reinforcing the feeling that they were never in serious danger. For example, in "The People's Friend" (February 7, 1960) Bart is pressed to run for state senator when legitimate candidate Ellsworth Greeley barely survives an assassination attempt secretly staged by his rival Wellington Cosgrove. Once it appears that Bart has become the favorite to win the election, a disguised Cosgrove and his henchmen threaten to kill Bart if he doesn't throw the election. But our hero is saved after he whimsically draws a moustache on a Cosgrove poster, thereby causing lawman Sheriff Burke to realize that Cosgrove is actually wanted outlaw Handlebar Joe Jeffers.

The "Maverick and Juliet" episode also illustrates the series' fondness for parody and puns, though by 1960 other series had picked up that tactic as well, such as Wagon Train's spoof of Dickens' Great Expectations in "The Tom Tucket Story." The Maverick episode "Kiz" (December 4, 1960) includes a newspaper reporter named Clement Samuels, an obvious anagram of Samuel Clemens reinforced by the unmistakable clothing and facial hair of the man who wrote under the pseudonym Mark Twain. In other seasons Maverick spoofed the work of Renaissance British playwright Richard Brinsley Sheridan ("The Rivals," January 25, 1959) and staged a parody of the popular gangster series The Untouchables.

The other significant differences between Maverick and other westerns are that the principal characters avoid gunplay at almost all costs--they would rather run than shoot--and they strenuously avoid romantic entanglements. In "Guatemala City" (January 31, 1960) Bret makes the mistake of regularly romancing Ellen Johnson, then compounds the error by tracking her down to Guatemala when she suddenly disappears. Needless to say, things go downhill from there as he becomes mixed up in a diamond heist that he eventually solves with the help of a street urchin named Angelita, suggesting that he is better off spending time with a female who is too young for him. However, the Mavericks are certainly not averse to fistfights, as there is usually at least one knuckle-swapping brawl per episode. Other western heroes like Bat Masterson and Deputy Clay McCord of The Deputy say that they prefer to avoid shooting but more often than not are forced by circumstances to let their guns do the talking.

The series also takes a less than serious approach to their gambling careers, perhaps as a hedge against the Puritanical backlash that sunk Mr. Lucky. While the Mavericks are generally without equal when it comes to playing poker straight up, they are very poor judges when engaging in other wagers. In "The Marquesa" (January 3, 1960) Bart accepts the deed to a cantina from Miguel Ruiz, sight unseen, as payment for a gambling debt. When he actually goes to visit his new establishment, he finds that it has been closed by order of a Judge Painter in a crooked ownership dispute involving a descendant of one-time town owner the Marquesa Ruisenor. Soon after Bart gains undisputed ownership to the property by paying the descendant, Lily, $5000, the cantina burns to the ground. In "Cruise of the Cynthia B" (January 10, 1960) Bret is hoodwinked into thinking he is buying a riverboat for a mere $1000 from Gillespie MacKenzie, whom he finds tied up by his ankles in a tree, only to later learn that the boat is in disrepair, that six other people fell for the same ruse, and that MacKenzie plans to take the forged deeds back from them all at gunpoint. Similar acquisitions fail to pan out in "The Town That Wasn't There" (October 2, 1960) and "The Maverick Line" (November 20, 1960), the former involving a silver mine and the latter a stagecoach line.

But perhaps the worst business deal was made by studio chief Jack L. Warner when he tried to repay Garner for unflattering comments he had made in an interview about Warner, his miserly operation, and his treatment of Garner as "a piece of meat." When a writers strike broke out in early 1960, Warner seized on the "force majeure" (i.e., "act of God") clause in Garner's contract to suspend the actor, claiming that there were no scripts to be filmed. Warner notably did not also suspend Garner's co-star Jack Kelly. Garner retaliated by suing Warner for breach of contract and, despite being warned that he would "never work in this town again," won the suit when Warner himself testified that the studio had in fact produced some 100 scripts by various writers during the strike, all credited to W. Hermanos, i.e. Warner Brothers. Though the monetary settlement Garner received was paltry, he was free from his contract with Warners to pursue what he really wanted all along--making feature films. To replace Garner, Warners inserted British actor Roger Moore, also already under contract, as cousin Beau Maverick at the beginning of Season 4, though in accepting the role Moore was able to structure his contract so that his servitude to Warners would last only one more year. Kelly would remain with the series for the duration, which would last through an abbreviated fifth season, but the ratings continued to sink each year from a high of #6 in 1958-59 to falling out of the top 30 after Garner left.

The series' enduring popularity and Garner's connection to it is evidenced by his participation in the 1978 TV movie The New Maverick, a guest appearance on the short-lived derivative 1979 series Young Maverick, his revival 1981 series Bret Maverick, and his role in the 1994 feature film adaption Maverick starring Mel Gibson. Though Garner may have hated his boss Jack Warner, he obviously bore no ill feelings to the character and TV series that launched his career, even attending the dedication of a statue depicting his character in his hometown of Norman, Oklahoma in 2006. Because of its iconoclastic take on the western genre and its star's equally outspoken take on the business of television, Maverick will remain, as its theme song states, a legend of the west.

The music for the theme song was composed by David Buttolph, born in New York, who studied at Julliard and in Vienna, where he also worked as a nightclub pianist. He also worked as an opera coach in Munich before returning to the States in 1927 and found work conducting for NBC Radio. In 1933 he moved to Los Angeles and began a long and prolific career composing, arranging, and conducting for feature films and television, though much of his work went uncredited. Among the many films he worked on were Zorro, Ball of Fire, House of Wax, The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, and The Lone Ranger. Besides Maverick, he worked on several other TV series, including Conflict, Laramie, Wagon Train, Frontier Circus, and The Virginian. He died January 1, 1983 at the age of 80. The lyrics for the Maverick theme were written by Paul Francis Webster, also from New York, who worked as a dance instructor before pursuing a career as a lyricist. His first song to be performed professionally was "Masquerade" recorded by Paul Whiteman in 1932. In 1935 Twentieth Century Fox signed him to write for Shirley Temple, but he soon return to free-lance work and scored his first hit when he collaborated with Duke Ellington on "I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)" in 1941.He began writing lyrics for feature films in 1935 and in 1950 signed a contract with MGM. He won three Oscars, for "Secret Love" (1953), "Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing" (1955), and "The Shadow of Your Smile" (1965), and was nominated 16 times, second only to Johnny Mercer. Among his other noted lyrics are "April Love," "Baltimore Oriole," "Black Coffee," "Like Young," "Rio Bravo", "Somewhere My Love," "The Twelfth of Never," and the theme to the 1967 animated series Spiderman. Webster was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1972 and passed away March 18, 1984 at the age of 76.

All five seasons have been released on DVD by WarnerArchives.









The Actors

James Garner

James Scott Bumgarner was born in Norman, Oklahoma. His mother, of Cherokee descent, died when he was 5 and his father sent Garner and his two older brothers to live with relatives until he remarried. But according to Garner his stepmother was a "nasty bitch" who beat him regularly and forced him to wear a dress as further humiliation. Finally at age 14 Garner had had enough and knocked her down with a single punch and then choked her on the floor until his father and brothers pulled him off. When Garner's stepmother couldn't provide his father a reason for why she started the fight, he sent her packing. But soon Garner's father left for California himself, with the boys left to fend for themselves. Garner joined the Merchant Marine toward the end of World War II at the age of 17. Eventually Garner and his brothers rejoined their father in Hollywood where Garner did modeling work for Jantzen swimwear but didn't like it because he felt like "a piece of meat." Garner soon returned to Norman to play high school football but never graduated. He was drafted into the army during the Korean War and won two Purple Hearts, the second for taking friendly fire in the buttocks. During his stint in the army Garner was an admitted "dog robber," a scrounger like the characters he would later play in The Great Escape and The Americanization of Emily. Before leaving the army he received his high school diploma after passing the high school equivalency test. He had hoped to play football at the University of Oklahoma but knee injuries from his time in the National Guard before the war prevented that, so he moved to California and lay carpet for his father's business until he noticed a sign for his friend Paul Gregory, a one-time soda jerk when Garner first met him, a fellow Oklahoman, and now a Hollywood agent. Gregory cast Garner in a non-speaking role for a theatrical production of The Caine Mutiny Court Martial that starred Henry Fonda, Lloyd Nolan, and John Hodiak. Garner was thus able to observe Fonda nightly and later became a kind of valet for Nolan and eventually helped both he and Fonda practice their lines. After the production ended he wound up doing commercials for Winston cigarettes before he finally met Warner Brothers talent scout Dick Bare, who then decided he wanted to cast Garner in the lead for Warners' first TV western, Cheyenne. However, Bare was unable to later get in touch with Garner before the role was given to Clint Walker, though he did end up with a supporting role in the show's first episode as well as bit parts in a few more episodes, eventually leading to a screen test for Warners and finally a contract. Warner Brothers shortened his last name to Garner without his prior agreement and had him cast in small roles in feature films Toward the Unknown, The Girl He Left Behind, and Shoot-Out at Medicine Bend before landing his first significant role supporting Marlon Brando and Red Buttons in Sayonara. When it came time to cast the lead character for Warners' new western Maverick, Garner believes he was chosen because he was already under contract, though he didn't want to do a TV series.

After his acrimonious departure from Maverick and Warner Brothers, Garner was able to develop the movie career he had wanted all along, with plum roles in hit films like The Great Escape, The Americanization of Emily, The Wheeler Dealers, and The Thrill of It All. During this time he also participated in the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom and was sitting in the third row when Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his "I Have a Dream" speech. His role in John Frankenheimer's 1966 Formula One drama Grand Prix gave him the car racing bug and by the end of the 1960s he owned his own racing team that competed in the rugged Baja 1000 cross country races with Garner driving himself along with a partner a couple of times. In 1969 he had a hit comedy western with Support Your Local Sheriff!, which led to the follow-up Support Your Local Gunfighter a couple of years later. He returned to TV for the series Nichols in 1971, but the show lasted only a single season with Garner's character being killed in the final episode. Maverick creator Roy Huggins and Stephen J. Cannell created the character who eventually became Jim Rockford in another series called Toma, managed to spin it into a TV movie of the week , and eventually its own series beginning in 1974 and running for 6 successful seasons. Though the show won him an Emmy for best lead actor in 1977, the series took a heavy physical toll on Garner, who was in nearly every scene and did his own stunts. An attack of bleeding ulcers led to the show's cancellation in 1980. Just as he stood up to Warner Brothers in the Maverick years, Garner wound up suing Universal for withheld royalties and exposed their "creative accounting" to make it appear that the studio was losing money, eventually settling out of court for what was assumed to be a multimillion dollar figure. But Garner's career was far from over: he brought back his first TV role in 1981 for a single season on Bret Maverick, appeared in the TV mini-series Space in 1985, and had recurring roles on Man of the People, Chicago Hope, First Monday, and 8 Simple Rules. He appeared in a series of Rockford TV movies in the 1990s, and he continued his work in feature films, most notably Victor Victoria, Murphy's Romance (for which he received an Oscar nomination), Space Cowboys, and The Notebook. He died July 19, 2014 apparently from a heart attack at the age of 86.

Jack Kelly

John Augustus Kelly, Jr. was born in Astoria, NY, the son of stage actress and model Nan Kelly and a ticketbroker, John Augustus Kelly, Sr., later a real estate professional after the family moved to Hollywood. Jack began modeling in soap commercials at age 2, for which he received a lifetime supply of soap and first appeared on the stage at age 9 with Hope Emerson in Swing Your Lady. He studied law at UCLA and gave up acting for a while, working various odd jobs before joining the Army in 1945, during which time he was aboard the first B-29 to fly over the Arctic circle. A year later he was back at UCLA and took up radio drama in the evenings on shows such as Lux Radio Theatre and Suspense. After leaving school he performed with the Circle Theatre of Los Angeles, where he was spotted in a production of Anna Lucasta by several directors, leading to his first film appearance in 10 years in 1949. After a number of feature film roles through the early 1950s, he began getting cast in TV programs such as The Ray Milland Show, Stories of the Century, and The Pepsi-Cola Playhouse, all in 1954. The following year he had his first starring television role as Dr. Parris Mitchell on Kings Row, one of three dramas (with Cheyenne and Casablanca) that rotated as part of Warner Brothers Presents. He continued interspersing his TV work with movie credits, including To Hell and Back, Forbidden Planet, and She Devil. But his career-defining role came when he was cast as Bart Maverick to share the workload with James Garner on Maverick.

Once Maverick ended in 1962, his TV guest spots were steady but not prolific, from Wagon Train in 1963 to Batman, Daktari, and Laredo in 1966. In the late 1960s he was the host of the game show Sale of the Century, eventually replaced by Joe Garagiola. He had brief supporting roles on Get Christie Love and The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries in the later 1970s, during which he also had a couple of guest spots on Garner's Rockford Files. He reprised his role of Bart Maverick in Garner's TV movie The New Maverick and short-lived TV series Bret Maverick as well as an episode of The Fall Guy and Kenny Rogers' TV movie The Gambler Returns: The Luck of the Draw. As his film work began to dry up in the late 1970s, he became involved in real estate in Huntington Beach, California, where he moved. He also entered into politics there, serving several terms on the City Council and as mayor from 1983 - 1986. He suffered a heart attack in April 1992 and after appearing to rebound from it suffered a fatal stroke on November 7, 1992 at the age of 65. His sister Nancy Kelly was a prolific screen actress from the 1930s through the 1950s, receiving an Oscar nomination for her role in The Bad Seed in 1956.

Roger Moore

Roger George Moore was born in Stockwell, now part of London, England, the son of a policeman and housewife. He was drafted into the British Army at the end of World War II, where one of his jobs was  taking care of entertainers for the troops in Hamburg, Germany. After the war he found work as a model, particularly for knitted clothing, earning him the nickname The Big Knit. He made his acting debut on a 1950 BBC program called Drawing Room Detective. He was signed to a 7-year film contract with MGM in 1952 but was let go after only two years after the failure of Diane. In 1958 he was cast in the title role for the TV series Ivanhoe, which split filming between Britain and California. The series lasted only a single season, but Moore was immediately cast in the lead role the following year in the Warner Brothers gold-rush series The Alaskans along with Dorothy Provine, with whom he had an affair while married to his second wife, singer Dorothy Squires. After this series lasted only a single season, Warner Brothers cast him as James Garner's replacement for Season 4 of Maverick. According to Garner, Moore agreed to do the series only if he were released from his Warner Brothers contract after one season. TV Guide also reported that Moore's contract stipulated that he would be released from Warner if Garner returned to the series.

After leaving Maverick Moore achieved his first great success when he was cast as Simon Templar in the British spy series The Saint, which ran for 7 seasons. Two years after its end he teamed up with Tony Curtis in the British-produced series The Persuaders! which found success in Europe but not in the States on ABC. In 1973 he succeeded Sean Connery as James Bond (excepting the 1-film diversion of George Lazenby in On Her Majesty's Secret Service) when he starred in Live and Let Die. He would star in the next 6 Bond films and as of this date served in the role longer than any other actor. While playing Bond he also appeared in other films such as Gold, Shout at the Devil, The Wild Geese, Cannonball Run, and Curse of the Pink Panther. After a 5-year hiatus following his last Bond film, he resumed his film career in 1990, which has continued up until at least 2013, though his appearances have become fewer and many involve voicework for animated fare such as Cats and Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore. He had a regular role in the 1999 TV series The Dream Team, but the show was canceled after only 5 episodes. He has been active in working for UNICEF and helped PETA produce a video protesting the making of foie gras. He was knighted in 2003 for his charity work. His later years have been plagued by a series of health issues--prostate cancer in 1993, bradycardia in 2003, and Type II diabetes in 2013. He currently splits his time between residences in Monaco, France, and Switzerland and has been married to his fourth wife Christine "Kiki" Tholstrup since 2002.

Notable Guest Stars

Season 3, Episode 16, "The Marquesa": Adele Mara (shown on the left, wife of Maverick producer Roy Huggins appeared in Wake of the Red Witch, Sands of Iwo Jima, and The Big Circus) plays Luisa, descendant of Marquesa Ruisenor. Carlos Romero (Rico Rodriguez on Wichita Town, Romero Serrano on Zorro, and Carlo Agretti on Falcon Crest) plays her attorney Manuel Ortiz. Jay Novello (Juan Greco on Zorro and Mayor Mario Lugatto on McHale's Navy) plays henchman Pepe. Morris Ankrum (starred in Rocketship X-M, Invaders From Mars, Earth vs. The Flying Saucers, and The Giant Claw and played the judge 22 times on Perry Mason) plays Judge Jason Painter. Raymond Hatton (starred in Oliver Twist (1916), The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Lord Jim, played Marshal Sandy Hopkins in 28 westerns and Rusty Joslin in 7 other westerns, and played The Mole on Dick Tracy) plays barfly Charlie Plank. Rodolfo Hoyos, Jr. (Luis Valdez on Viva Valdez) plays poker player Miguel Ruiz. Lane Chandler (Tom Pike on Lawman) plays a sheriff.
Season 3, Episode 17, "Cruise of the Cynthia B": Mona Freeman (starred in Black Beauty, Mother Wore Tights, Angel Face, and Jumping Jacks) plays schemer Modesty Blaine. Alexander Campbell (appeared in Magnificent Obsession and Anatomy of a Murder and played Sheriff Bill Logan on State Trooper) plays entrepreneur Abner Morton. Irene Tedrow (Mrs. Elkins on Dennis the Menace) plays boat co-owner Mrs. Ambrose Tutwiller. Gage Clarke (Mr. Botkin on Gunsmoke) plays boat co-owner Montgomery Teague.
Season 3, Episode 18, "Maverick and Juliet": Carole Wells (Edwina Brown on National Velvet and Lucy Hanks on Pistols 'n' Petticoats) plays feuding family daughter Julie Carteret. Lew Brown (SAC Allen Bennett on The F.B.I.) plays her brother Jeb. Sarah Selby (Aunt Gertrude on The Hardy Boys: The Mystery of the Applegate Treasure, Lucille Vanderlip on The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show, Miss Thomas on Father Knows Best, and Ma Smalley on Gunsmoke) plays her mother. Steve Terrell (Tom on Pride of the Family) plays her beloved Sonny Montgomery. Rhys Williams (Doc Burrage on The Rifleman) plays his father Montague Montgomery. Marjorie Bennett (see the biographical section for the 1960 post on The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis) plays his mother Edwina. Walter Coy (Zoravac on Rocky Jones, Space Ranger and the narrator on Frontier) plays a preacher.
Season 3, Episode 19, "The White Widow": Julie Adams (shown on the right, starred in The Creature From the Black Lagoon and played Martha Howard on The Jimmy Stewart Show, Ann Rorchek on Code Red, and Eve Simpson on Murder, She Wrote) plays bank owner and widow Wilma White. Ross Elliott (Freddie the director on The Jack Benny Show and Sheriff Abbott on The Virginian) plays her suitor Mayor Cosgrove. Don Kennedy (voice of Tansut on Space Ghost Coast to Coast) plays Sheriff Jim Vaughn. Richard Webb (Captain Midnight on Captain Midnight and Deputy Chief Don Jagger on Border Patrol) plays hotel owner Jim Manton.
Season 3, Episode 20, "Guatemala City": Suzanne Storrs (Janet Halloran on Naked City) plays Bret's love interest Ellen Johnson. Tudor Owen (Joe Ainsley on Mayor of the Town and Elihu Snow on Captain David Grief) plays his sea-faring friend Sim. Linda Dangcil (Sister Ana on The Flying Nun) plays Guatemala street urchin Angelita. Patric Knowles (starred in The Adventures of Robin Hood, How Green Was My Valley, and The Wolf Man) plays investigator Sam Bishop. Robert Carson (Mr. Maddis on The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show) plays a hotel clerk. Paul "Mousie" Garner (Mousie on Surfside 6) plays a newspaper boy.
Season 3, Episode 21, "The People's Friend": John Litel (starred in Back in Circulation, On Trial, Murder in the Blue Room, four Nancy Drew films, and eight Henry Aldrich films and played the Governor on Zorro and Dan Murchison on Stagecoach West) plays candidate Ellsworth Greeley. Merry Anders (shown on the left, played Joyce Erwin on The Stu Erwin Show, Val Marlowe on It's Always Jan, Mike McCall on How to Marry a Millionaire, and Policewoman Dorothy Miller on Dragnet 1967) plays his daughter Penelope. John Zaremba (Special Agent Jerry Dressler on I Led 3 Lives, Dr. Harold Jensen on Ben Casey, Admiral Hardesy on McHale's Navy, Dr. Raymond Swain on The Time Tunnel, and Dr, Harlem Danvers on Dallas) plays his supporter Gantry. R.G. Armstrong (Police Capt. McAllister on T.H.E. Cat and Lewis Vendredi on Friday the 13th) plays his rival Wellington Cosgrove. Francis de Sales (Lt. Bill Weigand on Mr. & Mrs. North, Ralph Dobson on The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet, Sheriff Maddox on Two Faces West, and Rusty Lincoln on Days of Our Lives) plays Silverdale Mayor Culpepper. Walter Sande (appeared in To Have and Have Not, A Place in the Sun, and Bad Day at Black Rock and played Capt. Horatio Bullwinkle on The Adventures of Tugboat Annie and Papa Holstrum on The Farmer's Daughter) plays Silverdale Sheriff Burke. Dick Wilson (Dino Barone on McHale's Navy and George Whipple in Charmin toilet paper commercials) plays card cheat Crenshaw.
Season 3, Episode 22, "A Flock of Trouble": George Wallace (starred in Radar Men From the Moon, Destry, and Forbidden Planet and played Judge Milton Cole on Hill Street Blues and Grandpa Hank Hammersmith on Sons and Daughters) plays rancher Verne Scott. Myrna Fahey (shown on the right, played Katherine "Kay" Banks on Father of the Bride) plays his fiance Dee Cooper. Donnelly Rhodes (appeared in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and played Dutch Leitner on Soap, Charlie on Report to Murphy, Art Foster on Double Trouble, Dr. Grant Roberts on Danger Bay, Harry Abramowitz on The Heights, R.J. Williams on Street Legal, Det. Leo Shannon on Da Vinci's Inquest, and Dr. Sherman Cottle on Battlestar Gallactica) plays his henchman Cain. Tim Graham (Homer Ede on National Velvet) plays sheep-herder Jensen.
Season 3, Episode 23, "Iron Hand": Susan Morrow (starred in Gasoline Alley, Problem Girls, and Cat-Women of the Moon) plays cattle rancher Connie Coleman. Robert Redford (shown on the left, starred in Barefoot in the Park, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The Sting, and All the President's Men) plays her brother Jimmy. Lane Chandler (see "The Marquesa" above) plays lawman Marshal Richter. Terry Frost (Sgt. Moore/Morse/Morris on Highway Patrol) plays cattle buyer Purdy. Glenn Strange (played Frankenstein's monster in House of Frankenstein, House of Dracula, and Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein and played Sam Noonan on Gunsmoke) plays the Abilene marshal.
Season 3, Episode 24, "The Resurrection of Joe November": Charles Maxwell (Special Agent Joe Carey on I Led 3 Lives and was the voice of the radio announcer on Gilligan's Island) plays German shyster Baron Thor von Und Zu Himmelstern. Joanna Barnes (Lola on 21 Beacon Street and Katie O'Brien on The Trials of O'Brien) plays his partner Felice de Lasignac. Forrest Lewis (Mr. Peavey on The Great Gildersleeve) plays riverboat Captain Nelson. Don "Red" Barry (played Red Ryder in the movie serial The Adventures of Red Ryder, and played Lt. Snedigar on Surfside 6, The Grand Vizier and Tarantula on Batman, Capt. Red Barnes on Police Woman, and Jud Larabee on Little House on the Prairie) plays bartender Willie Saffron. Nita Talbot (Marya on Hogan's Heroes, Judy Evans on Here We Go Again, Delfina on General Hospital, and Rose on Starting From Scratch) plays his girlfriend Bessie Bison. Harry Cheshire (see the biography section for the 1960 post on Lawman) plays church keeper Brother Ambrose. Kelly Thordsen (Colorado Charlie on Yancy Derringer) plays a police captain.
Season 3, Episode 25, "The Misfortune Teller": Kathleen Crowley (Terry Van Buren on Waterfront and Sophia Starr on Batman) plays Bret's old friend Melanie Blake. Alan Mowbry (appeared in A Study in Scarlet, Berkeley Square, Topper, and The Man Who Knew Too Much and played Stewart Styles on Dante) plays astrological lawyer Luke Abigor. Emory Parnell (Hawkins on The Life of Riley and Hank the bartender on Lawman) plays bar owner Fred Grady. Chubby Johnson (Concho on Temple Houston) plays jailer Jud. Hank Patterson (Fred Ziffel on Green Acres and Petticoat Junction and Hank on Gunsmoke) plays a whittling man. Mickey Simpson (Boley on Captain David Grief) plays bartender Charlie Turple.
Season 3, Episode 26, "Greenbacks, Unlimited": John Dehner (shown on the right, played Duke Williams on The Roaring '20's, Commodore Cecil Wyntoon on The Baileys of Balboa, Morgan Starr on The Virginian, Cyril Bennett on The Doris Day Show, Dr. Charles Cleveland Claver on The New Temperatures Rising Show, Barrett Fears on Big Hawaii, Marshal Edge Troy on Young Maverick, Lt. Joseph Broggi on Enos, Hadden Marshall on Bare Essence, and Billy Joe Erskine on The Colbys) plays safe-cracker Ed Murphy. Patrick Westwood (Mian Rukn Din on The Indian Tales of Rudyard Kipling) plays his accomplice London Louie Latimer. Gage Clarke (see "The Cruise of the Cynthia B" above) plays Bret's old friend Foursquare Farley. Sammy Jackson (Will Stockdale on No Time for Sergeants) plays card player Junior Kallikak. Forest Taylor (starred in True Nobility, Big Calibre, Too Much Beef, and The Lost Planet and played Doc Brannon on Man Without a Gun) plays a card player. Luis Delgado (Jack Kelly's and then James Garner's stand-in on Maverick, Officer Billings on The Rockford Files, and Shifty Delgrado on Bret Maverick) plays a card player. Roy Engel (Doc Martin on Bonanza, the police chief on My Favorite Martian, and President Ulysses S. Grant on The Wild, Wild West) plays Denver Marshal Ratcliffe.
Season 4, Episode 1, "The Bundle From Britain": Robert Caspar (Barry Wisegarten on Room 222 and Dr. J. Stanley Mattick on Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman) plays wealthy heir Freddie Bognor. Robert Douglas (appeared in The Fountainhead, Kim, Ivanhoe, and The Prisoner of Zenda and directed multiple episodes of 77 Sunset Strip, 12 O'Clock High, The F.B.I., and Baretta amongst many others) plays kidnapping ringleader Herbert. Max Baer, Jr. (shown on the left, played Jethro and Jethrine Bodine on The Beverly Hillbillies) plays henchman Brazos. Mickey Simpson (see "The Misfortune Teller" above) plays henchman Pecos. Clancy Cooper (see the biography section for the 1960 post on Lawman) plays ranch owner McGee.
Season 4, Episode 2, "Hadley's Hunters": Edgar Buchanan (Uncle Joe Carson on The Beverly Hillbillies, Green Acres, and Petticoat Junction, Red Connors on Hopalong Cassidy, Judge Roy Bean on Judge Roy Bean, Bob/Doc Dawson on Tales of Wells Fargo, Doc Burrage on The Rifleman, and J.J. Jackson on Cade's County) plays small-town kingpin Sheriff Hadley. Howard McNear (Floyd Lawson on The Andy Griffith Show and Jansen the Plumber on The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show) plays his biographer Copes. Robert J. Wilke (appeared in Best of the Badmen, High Noon, The Far Country, and Night Passage and played Capt. Mendoza on Zorro) plays his deputy McCabe. George Kennedy (starred in Charade, The Sons of Katie Elder, The Dirty Dozen, Cool Hand Luke, and The Naked Gun and played MP Sgt. Kennedy on The Phil Silvers Show, Father Samuel Cavanuagh on Sarge, Bumper Morgan on The Blue Knight, and Carter McKay on Dallas) plays his deputy Jones. James Gavin (Sheriff Frank Madden on The Big Valley) plays his deputy Smith. Herb Vigran (Judge Brooker on Gunsmoke) plays bartender Pender. Harry Harvey (Sheriff Tom Blodgett on The Roy Rogers Show, Mayor George Dixon on Man Without a Gun, and Houghton Stott on It's a Man's World) plays the father of a wanted man's girlfriend. John Russell, Peter Brown, Will Hutchins, Clint Walker, and Ty Hardin all have cameos as their respective Warner Brothers western characters. Edd Byrnes (77 Sunset Strip) has a cameo as a stable boy.
Season 4, Episode 3, "The Town That Wasn't There": Richard Hale (starred in Abilene Town, Kim, San Antone, Red Garters, and To Kill a Mockingbird) plays railroad acquisition agent Wilber Shanks. Alexander Campbell (see "Cruise of the Cynthia B." above) plays his boss Horatio Cromwell. Jon Lormer (Harry Tate on Lawman, various autopsy surgeons and medical examiners in 12 episodes of Perry Mason, and Judge Irwin A. Chester on Peyton Place) plays ranch owner Sam Bradford. Merry Anders (see "The People's Friend" above) plays his daughter Maggie. John Astin (shown on the right, appeared in That Touch of Mink, The Wheeler Dealers, Move Over, Darling, Viva Max, and Freaky Friday and played Harry Dickens on I'm Dickens, He's Fenster, Gomez Addams on The Addams Family, Rudy Pruitt on The Phyllis Diller Show, Lt. Cmdr. Matthew Sherman on Operation Petticoat, Ed LaSalle on Mary, Buddy Ryan on Night Court, Radford on Eerie, Indiana, and Prof. Albert Wickwire on The Adventures of Briscoe County, Jr.) plays sheep rancher Joe Lambert. Lane Chandler (Lane Chandler, see "The Marquesa" above) plays lawman Sheriff Crane. Hank Patterson (see "The Misfortune Teller" above) plays a wagon driver. Forrest Lewis (see "The Resurrection of Joe November" above) plays an old-timer riding the stagecoach.
Season 4, Episode 4, "Arizona Black Maria": Alan Hale, Jr. (shown on the left, played Biff Baker on Biff Baker U.S.A., Casey Jones on Casey Jones, Sculley on The Texan, and The Skipper on Gilligan's Island) plays prison wagon driver Capt. Jim Pattishall. Joanna Barnes (see "The Resurrection of Joe November" above) plays his prisoner Daphne Tolliver. Don "Red" Barry (see "The Resurrection of Joe November" above) plays prisoner Dishonest Abe. Terence de Marney (Case Thomas on Johnny Ringo and Counsellor Doone on Lorna Doone) plays prisoner Fingers Louie. Harry Swoger (Harry the bartender on The Big Valley) plays outlaw Rufus.
Season 4, Episode 5, "Last Wire From Stop Gap": Robert Cornthwaite (Professor Windish on Get Smart) plays businessman Wembley. Don C. Harvey (Collins on Rawhide) plays the Stop Gap sheriff. Olive Sturgess (Carol Henning on The Bob Cummings Show) plays telegraph owner's daughter Phyllis Hulett. Jimmie Horan (Trooper Hogan on F Troop) plays a nosy kibitzer. Richard Reeves (Mr. Murphy on Date With the Angels) plays a drunken prospector.
Season 4, Episode 6, "Mano Nera": Frank Wilcox (shown on the right, played Henry Van Buren on Waterfront, Beecher Asbury on The Untouchables, Mr. Brewster on The Beverly Hillbillies and Petticoat Junction, and the judge 8 times on Perry Mason) plays New Orleans police chief Thomas Rawlins. Paul Bryar (Sheriff Harve Anders on The Long, Hot Summer) plays police Officer Noonan. John Beradino (Special Agent Steve Daniels on I Led 3 Lives, Sgt. Vince Cavelli on The New Breed, and Dr. Steve Hardy on General Hospital) plays vineyard owner Giovanni Marchese. Myrna Fahey (see "A Flock of Trouble" above) plays his sister Carla. Gerald Mohr (narrator on 19 episodes of The Lone Ranger, Christopher Storm on Foreign Intrigue, voice of Mr. Fantastic and Reed Richards on Fantastic 4) plays mobster Giacommo Beretti. Nesdon Booth (Frank the bartender on Cimarron City) plays a hotel house detective.
Season 4, Episode 7, "A Bullet for the Teacher": Kathleen Crowley (see "The Misfortune Teller" above) plays showgirl Flo Baker. Bing Russell (Deputy Clem Foster on Bonanza) plays casino employee Luke Storm. Brad Johnson (Deputy Sheriff Lofty Craig on Annie Oakley) plays St. Joseph Constable Jim Reardon. Arch Johnson (starred in Somebody Up There Likes Me, G.I. Blues, and The Cheyenne Social Club and played Cmdr. Wivenhoe on Camp Runamuck) plays Garnet, NM sheriff and mayor Ephrim Burch. Joan Tompkins (Trudy Wagner on Sam Benedict, Mrs. Brahms on Occasional Wife, and Lorraine Miller on My Three Sons) plays his wife Mary. Max Baer, Jr. (see "The Bundle From Britain" above) plays cowboy Chuck. Tom London (starred in Six-Shootin' Sheriff, Song of the Buckaroo, and Riders in the Sky) plays a farmer. John Harmon (hotel clerk Eddie Halstead on The Rifleman) plays a station agent.
Season 4, Episode 8, "The Witch of Hound Dog": Anita Sands (Elaine on The Tab Hunter Show) plays reputed witch Nancy Sutliff. Sheldon Allman (Norm Miller on Harris Against the World) plays her brother Ox. Wayde Preston (shown on the left, played Christopher Colt on Colt .45) plays physician Luke Baxter. Phil Tully (Charlie the bartender on The Deputy) plays Hound Dog sheriff Cyrus.
Season 4, Episode 9, "Thunder From the North": Richard Coogan (Marshal Matthew Wayne on The Californians) plays trading post cheat Hank Lawson. Robert Warwick (starred in Alias Jimmy Valentine, The Supreme Sacrifice, The Heart of a Hero, and Against All Flags) plays Chief Standing Bull. Gary Conway (Det. Tim Tilson on Burke's Law and Capt. Steve Burton on Land of the Giants) plays an army orderly.
Season 4, Episode 10, "The Maverick Line": Buddy Ebsen (shown on the right, played Sgt. Hunk Marriner on Northwest Passage, Jed Clampett on The Beverly Hillbillies, Barnaby Jones on Barnaby Jones, and Roy Houston on Matt Houston) plays stage robber Rumsey Plumb. Will Wright (Ben Weaver on The Andy Griffith Show) plays estate attorney Atherton Flayger. Peggy McCay (Anna Rose on Room for One More, Iris Fairchild on General Hospital, Mrs. Malloy on Gibbsville, Marian Hume on Lou Grant, and Caroline Brady on Days of Our Lives) plays ranch owner Polly Goodin. Chubby Johnson (see "The Misfortune Teller" above) plays stage driver Dutch Wilcox.

Season 4, Episode 11, "Bolt From the Blue": Will Hutchins (shown on the left, appeared in No Time for Sergeants, Spinout, Clambake, and The Happy Hooker Goes to Washington and played Tom "Sugarfoot" Brewster on Sugarfoot, Woodrow Banner on Hey, Landlord, and Dagwood Bumstead on Blondie) plays a novice cowboy lawyer. Tim Graham (see "A Flock of Trouble" above) plays horse-thief Ebenezer Bolt. Fay Spain (starred in Dragstrip Girl, Al Capone, and The Gentle Rain) plays sister of wronged fiance Angelica Garland. Owen Bush (Ben on Shane, John Belson on Sirota's Court, and Crimshaw on Our House) plays horse-thief Benson January. Percy Helton (Homer Cratchit on The Beverly Hillbillies) plays posse member Bradley. Richard Hale (see "The Town That Wasn't There" above) plays hanging Judge Hookstratten.
Season 4, Episode 12, "Kiz": Kathleen Crowley (see "The Misfortune Teller" above) plays eccentric millionaire Kiz Bouchet. Peggy McCay (see "The Maverick Line" above) plays her cousin Melissa Bouchet. Tristram Coffin (Lt. Doyle on The Files of Jeffrey Jones and Capt. Tom Rynning on 26 Men) plays Melissa's fiance Dr. Pittman. Whit Bissell (shown on the right, starred in He Walked by Night, Creature From the Black Lagoon, I Was a Teenage Werewolf, I Was a Teenage Frankenstein, and Hud and played Bert Loomis on Bachelor Father, Calvin Hanley on Peyton Place, and Lt. Gen. Heywood Kirk on The Time Tunnel) plays newspaper reporter Clement Samuels. Claude Stroud (Rudy Cromwell on The Duke and Hobert Nalven on The Ted Knight Show) plays hotel manager Henry. Max Baer, Jr. (see "The Bundle From Britain" above) plays ticket-taker Ezra. Chuck Hicks (LaMarr Kane on The Untouchables) plays boxer Gentleman Jim Bartlett.
Season 4, Episode 13, "Dodge City or Bust": Diana Millay (shown on the left, played Laura Collins on Dark Shadows) plays defrauded property owner Diana Dangerfield. Peter Whitney (Sergeant Buck Sinclair on The Rough Riders and Lafe Crick on The Beverly Hillbillies) plays bounty hunter Ollie Brock. Howard McNear (see "Hadley's Hunters" above) plays the sheriff. Med Flory (played clarinet in the Ray Anthony orchestra and founded and plays alto sax in the group Super Sax, appeared in Gun Street, The Nutty Professor (1963), and The Gumball Rally, and played Sheriff Mike McBride on High Mountain Rangers) plays his deputy Ben Nevers. Dick Elliott (Officer Murphy on Dick Tracy and Mayor Pike on The Andy Griffith Show) plays odd poker player George.
Season 4, Episode 14, "The Bold Fenian Men": Arch Johnson (see "A Bullet for the Teacher" above) plays U.S. Cavalry Col. Gaylord Summers. Arthur Shields (starred in The Plough and the Stars, National Velvet, and The Corn is Green and played Boles on The Hardy Boys: The Mystery of the Applegate Treasure) plays Irish revolutionary Terence Fogarty. Herb Vigran (see "Hadley's Hunters" above) plays hotel clerk Ed Cramer.
Season 4, Episode 15, "Destination Devil's Flat": Peter Breck (shown on the right, played Clay Culhane on Black Saddle, Doc Holliday on later seasons of Maverick, and Nick Barkley on The Big Valley) plays Crenshaw, KS Sheriff Dan Trevor. Richard Reeves (see "Last Wire From Stop Gap" above) plays his accomplice Bull Crumpett. Patrick Westwood (see "Greenbacks, Unlimited" above) plays his accomplice Snake Rundall. Chubby Johnson (see "The Misfortune Teller" above) plays his deputy Oscar. Frank Ferguson (Gus Broeberg on My Friend Flicka, Eli Carson on Peyton Place, and Dr. Barton Stuart on Petticoat Junction) plays storefront mission Deacon Curt Eaker. Merry Anders (see "The People's Friend" above) plays his niece Marybelle McCall. Harry Swoger (see "Arizona Black Maria" above) plays a train conductor.