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 Posted:   Apr 26, 2014 - 9:55 AM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

WAGON TRAIN last 8 seasons, 1957-65.

I've only watched one episode, that John Ford directed.

Which season is the best season? which season will win me over?

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 26, 2014 - 4:24 PM   
 By:   CinemaScope   (Member)

I used to watch this in the UK soo long ago, late 50's early 60's. I think it was on Monday nights (Cheyenne & Maverick were on Sunday nights), I only really like the series with Ward Bond in. The first three series?

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 26, 2014 - 5:22 PM   
 By:   riotengine   (Member)

I only really like the series with Ward Bond in. The first three series?

Four. Technically, three and an half. wink

Greg Espinoza

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 26, 2014 - 5:22 PM   
 By:   riotengine   (Member)

I only really like the series with Ward Bond in. The first three series?

Four. Technically, three and an half. wink

Greg Espinoza

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 26, 2014 - 5:58 PM   
 By:   filmusicnow   (Member)

WAGON TRAIN last 8 seasons, 1957-65.

I've only watched one episode, that John Ford directed.

Which season is the best season? which season will win me over?


That episode was "The Colter Craven Story", and featured John Wayne in a cameo; sadly, it would be the last time that Wayne, Bond and Ford would ever work together, because ironically, it was the last episode that Bond would appear in.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 27, 2014 - 11:43 AM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

I've only seen the 6 episodes that John Williams scored. Thread here:

http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=19918&forumID=1&archive=1

So I'm not sure I'm qualified to make any proper evaluation. Not really my kind of show, to be honest. The later seasons had feature-length episodes; that's quite unusual. Of those Williams-scored episodes I've seen, maybe I'd pick "The Jenny Tannen Story" from season 2 as the best.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 27, 2014 - 11:45 AM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

Yeah, but with 8 seasons, which season was the best season? in which season did the series hit its stride, so to speak?

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 27, 2014 - 1:17 PM   
 By:   Thor   (Member)

I have no idea. I just wanted to comment on an early Williams involvement. smile

 
 Posted:   Apr 27, 2014 - 1:37 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

Yeah, but with 8 seasons, which season was the best season? in which season did the series hit its stride, so to speak?

I've only seen one episode of this series--an episode with Bette Davis--so I can't make a judgment call on the program's peak period. If I recall correctly, Wagon Train lingered at #2 in the Nielsen Ratings, not hitting number one until after the death of its star, Ward Bond (Nov 1960).

Wagon Train is smack dab in the middle of the Western TV show dominance in US popular culture. It's a program I really need to explore.

Slightly OT: I don't know where Gene Roddenberry got the "Wagon Train to the Stars" sales pitch for Star Trek because the guest stars on that program don't come anywhere near the epic amount of legends who appeared on Wagon Train.

 
 
 Posted:   Apr 27, 2014 - 4:06 PM   
 By:   filmusicnow   (Member)

Unuaual is that "Wagon Train"'s seventh season went to color and a hour and a half format (it would resort back to its one hour format and sadly back to B&W for its final season).

 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 8:37 AM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

While reading the Brooks and Marsh book's Nielsen ratings for each TV season, I couldn't help but notice how Wagon Train was the #1 program during the 1961-62 season but in '62-'63, it plummeted all the way down to #25(!) Was there really a drop in quality or had the show merely run its course?

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 11:41 AM   
 By:   riotengine   (Member)

While reading the Brooks and Marsh book's Nielsen ratings for each TV season, I couldn't help but notice how Wagon Train was the #1 program during the 1961-62 season but in '62-'63, it plummeted all the way down to #25(!) Was there really a drop in quality or had the show merely run its course?

Partially, I think the show never recovered from the loss of Ward Bond, but I had read that Wagon Train switched networks around that time, going from NBC to ABC, and took a hit in the ratings.

Slightly OT: I don't know where Gene Roddenberry got the "Wagon Train to the Stars" sales pitch for Star Trek because the guest stars on that program don't come anywhere near the epic amount of legends who appeared on Wagon Train.

Hyperbole on Gene's part. Roddenberry was a smart guy, using language that network suits could understand. They may not have understood what Star Trek was about, but they understood Wagon Train was a popular show.

Greg

 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 2:43 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

Partially, I think the show never recovered from the loss of Ward Bond, but I had read that Wagon Train switched networks around that time, going from NBC to ABC, and took a hit in the ratings.


The superb John Wayne Biography, John Wayne- American, talks a lot about Ward Bond. It also talks about how poorly he handled Wagon Train's success; which probably hastened Bond's demise.

 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 3:19 PM   
 By:   Jim Phelps   (Member)

BTW, never figured you for a "Wagon Train" kind of guy, Greg. Here's to you, pal!

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 3:34 PM   
 By:   filmusicnow   (Member)

Partially, I think the show never recovered from the loss of Ward Bond, but I had read that Wagon Train switched networks around that time, going from NBC to ABC, and took a hit in the ratings.


The superb John Wayne Biography, John Wayne- American, talks a lot about Ward Bond. It also talks about how poorly he handled Wagon Train's success; which probably hastened Bond's demise.


He and Robert Horton (Flint McCullough) didn't get along.

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 4:59 PM   
 By:   riotengine   (Member)

BTW, never figured you for a "Wagon Train" kind of guy, Greg. Here's to you, pal!

Yep, Jim. I remember the show from when I was a kid, and I watched it from the beginning when Me-TV started running it. It's on the second go-around now, and I'm waiting for them to start running the John McIntire b&w episodes, which they skipped last time.

Greg Espinoza

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 5:03 PM   
 By:   riotengine   (Member)


The superb John Wayne Biography, John Wayne- American, talks a lot about Ward Bond. It also talks about how poorly he handled Wagon Train's success; which probably hastened Bond's demise.


He and Robert Horton (Flint McCullough) didn't get along.

I'd read they were professional, but Bond was a hard core conservative, and Fuller was quite liberal. I'd read they often butted heads politically, but they made up right before Bond passed away.

Greg Espinoza

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 6:53 PM   
 By:   Richard-W   (Member)

Greg, what's the best season to start with? which season will make a fan out me?

Richard

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 18, 2014 - 7:04 PM   
 By:   riotengine   (Member)

Greg, what's the best season to start with? which season will make a fan out me?

Richard


I've only seen the first three and a half seasons, and a couple of the color episodes. It's a very hard question as I'm (going out on a limb here...) pretty sure most people here haven't seen all eight seasons.

Greg Espinoza

 
 
 Posted:   Jul 19, 2014 - 1:53 AM   
 By:   CinemaScope   (Member)

Partially, I think the show never recovered from the loss of Ward Bond, but I had read that Wagon Train switched networks around that time, going from NBC to ABC, and took a hit in the ratings.


The superb John Wayne Biography, John Wayne- American, talks a lot about Ward Bond. It also talks about how poorly he handled Wagon Train's success; which probably hastened Bond's demise.


He and Robert Horton (Flint McCullough) didn't get along.


I remember that Robert Horton was also a singer & came over to London for some singing engagements at the time (unless my memory is playing tricks on me). I see that Ward Bond was only 57 when he died, he looked a LOT older, must have been all that hard living. I love Ward Bond on the screen, but from what I've read about him I don't think I'd have liked him too much if I had known him in real life.

 
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