It's rangewar time again, with the ranchers once again fighting the homesteaders for a certain piece of
land to drive their cattle through. So people get shot, houses burned
& a dam blown up, and there's only Roy Rogers & wife Dale Evans
to talk some sense into both sides of the conflict - that Roy's equally
detested by both ranchers & homesteaders doesn't make things easier
one bit. In the end though, his talking reason - if needed with is own
fists - & Dale's motherly advice can prevent massive
bloodshed, an agreement is made.
Since the late 30's, Roy Rogers has been one of the B-movies'
singing cowboys. By the early 1950's though, the grounds for b- or
series-Western had pretty much dried out, so he, like many other
B-cowboys (most notably Gene Autry), made the transition to the new
medium of television, which quite naturally welcomed the big-name-star
with open arms. & the series did indeed prove very successful,
running from 1951 until 1957. In production values, though, the series
could hardly compete with Rogers' features,
having just a tad too much happening off-screen (in this one, we are
only told of a guy getting shot, a house burned down & a dam blown up -
heck, we don't even see the goddam dam even intact), also, if B-Western
in general tended to be formulaic, the series was even more so, someone
fighting someone, Roy & Dale - partners on- as well as off-screen -
caught in the middle as some kind of a moral equator, and a highly
moralistic ending tagged onto every episode. Dale's sometimes lively
performances in the features are also reduced to a very motherly role,
her usually giving advice to everyone, but not otherwise taking part in
the action herself. And Pat Brady (of Roy Rogers' Band, Sons of the
Pioneers) as comic relief is just simply bad.
One last thing, to hear the cowboy-hero of a show like this sing the
Jell-O Pudding song & endorse Post Sugar Crisps is
somewhat sad & does not add to his credibility - but hey, that's what tv was like back then.