Have Gun, Will Travel

I don't think you got a very good look at this gun while you had it.

Western Action & Adventure Drama
English     7.438     1957     USA

Overview

Have Gun – Will Travel is an American Western television series that aired on CBS from 1957 through 1963. It was rated number three or number four in the Nielsen ratings every year of its first four seasons. It was one of the few television shows to spawn a successful radio version. The radio series debuted November 23, 1958. The television show is presently shown on the Encore-Western channel. Have Gun – Will Travel was created by Sam Rolfe and Herb Meadow and produced by Frank Pierson, Don Ingalls, Robert Sparks, and Julian Claman. There were 225 episodes of the TV series, 24 written by Gene Roddenberry. Other contributors included Bruce Geller, Harry Julian Fink, Don Brinkley and Irving Wallace. Andrew McLaglen directed 101 episodes and 19 were directed by series star Richard Boone.

Reviews

drystyx wrote:
GUNMAN WHO PLAYS GOD Richard Boone stars as Palladin, the gunman with a card saying "Have Gun, Will Travel". In the days when this was made, he was seen as a forward thinking liberal gunman, even into the sixties and seventies, and especially today. It was like most TV series in that all the corrupt people were white males, and especially so in this one. A lot of people today don't realize this, but this was how nearly every Western was in the fifties, even on TV. The problem with Palladin was that he never minded his own business, even when he made it his business. He always wanted to play God. In the show, he's always right, but his philosophy led too much to the modern day "scapegoating".
BiginV3gas wrote:
Have Gun, Will Travel offers, in the character of Paladin, a protagonist who was atypical amongst the lineup of 1950's western drama heroes. He was the erudite gunslinger, the gentleman-bounty hunter, the fixer of situations gone bad and a constrained vigilante. Contrary to what has been written in another review, Paladin didn't seek to play "god"; however, his line of work may have required that he play any of the roles of judge, jury and executioner, depending on the situation. While not pretending to the status of "god," Paladin could quote with ease passages from the King James Bible or Shakespeare, prior to dispatching the villain at hand. It would also be impossible for Paladin to engage in extensive moralizing, as the show made no pretenses about Paladin's choice to be a gun-for-hire to support his lavish lifestyle and other predilections. Contrary to what has been written in another review, villains were not limited to "corrupt white men," and the series made no off-putting political statements of that ilk. Here, the reader should be reminded that 1950's westerns did feature villainous white men, as well as armed conflict with Indians, Mexican banditos and Comancheros. These were the bread and butter of TV western stories but were not political statements in themselves. Paladin was a considerable thinker, but this is not synonymous with "liberal," as has been claimed in another review. Many shows from the bygone era of 1950's westerns have aged out of appeal. Have Gun, Will Travel hangs on to its viewing enjoyment, primarily through the complex character and commanding presence of Paladin (Richard Boone). All fictional shows require some suspension of disbelief to achieve immersion in the story; for 1950's westerns, this is less of a stretch than for the litany of modern series pertaining to witches, zombies, vampires and CSI-type police dramas. I highly recommend this series, which is on my "short list" of must-see 1950's western shows.

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