Wanted:Dead Or Alive (1958-61)

Steve McQueen as Josh Randall

Steve McQueen is bounty hunter Josh Randall. He roams the West with his sawed-off rifle. looking for the bad guys…..and a few bucks. 

Opening episode: “The Martin Poster” with Nick Adams and Michael Landon. It also features Jennifer Lea an actress who is a great answer in trivia contests.  Great way to open a successful series. Josh rides into Las Tunas to get Andy Martin (Nick Adams). He walks into a jailbreak.  Carl Martin (Michael Landon) and his brother kill the Marshall and knock Josh out. Before he passes out he manages to put a bullet in Carl.

Two deputies think Josh pulled the jailbreak. They know him by reputation and they don’t like him one bit. Josh manages to get away from them and trails after the Martin brothers. Meanwhile, Andy goes to Dr.Leach’s (Vaughn Taylor) place. He takes him to a remote location where Carl is laying. The Doc does what he can for him. Andy says thanks by shooting him in the back.

Later, Josh comes across the scene. He buries the Doc and rides out to the Martin ranch. In the barn he sees Louise Martin (Jennifer Lea). She doesn’t know who he is and invites him inside. Carl comes out. He’s got a gun. Before he can pull the trigger Louise knocks the gun aside. That’s about it for Carl and he has to lay back down.

In walks Andy. Good final showdown scene. As good as this episode was I do have an issue with casting Nick Adams and Michael Landon as brothers. That doesn’t take away from Nick Adams’ performance. This show was a year before Adams got his own Western, “The Rebel.” Jennifer Lea was Laura Petrie in the pilot of “The Dick Van Dyke Show.” She was replaced by Barbara Britton. Of course the eventual choice was Mary Tyler Moore.

“The Favor” with Skip Homeier.- Josh rides into town to see Sheriff Bedloe. He’s hiding out on a hotel with bank robber Gabe Justin. During the robbery a clerk was killed and the town wants to lynch Justin. Bedloe asks Josh to do him a favor, ride out after Justin’s partner Ted Jenks (Skip Homeier). Justin says he told him where to find him because he wants to see him hang right next to him.

Josh goes to the town where Jenks is holed up. In the saloon he tells the friendly bartender he’s a friend of Jenks. While sitting at a table a man comes out of the backroom for a bottle and then goes back in. Josh doesn’t bat an eye. The bartender’s not so friendly now. The man was Jenks.

In the backroom the brother of the murdered clerk has the drop on Jenks. Josh changes that and takes off with Jenks. The bartender told Josh that Jenks was a big man in town and his friends won’t let him take him back.

The rest of the episode is Josh taking Jenks back and someone following them. Jenks keeps saying he did ride with Justin but refused to take part in the bank robbery. At the end, Josh gets an unpleasant surprise.

Skip Homeier was a familair face to TV fans. Along with appearing in many shows he played Dr.Hugh Jacoby in “The Interns” (1970-71).

Skip Homeier


About vintage45

I'm a big fan of vintage books,movies,TV shows and music. I encourage everyone to patronize your local used book/record store and pick up some of the good stuff. My posts are capsule reviews of some favorites that you may want to investigate. The albums posted aren't really reviews but items from my collection that are still available. I try and point out highlights of each one and let the music speak for itself. Thanks to all for checking out the blog.
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