The Rifleman (1958-1963)

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    Information From IMDb

    Plot Summary
    Lucas McCain, lived with his son, Mark on a ranch near North Fork, New Mexico.
    To help raise his son, he helped the ineffective Sheriff, maintain order.
    He was helped considerably, by the fact
    that he could fire a round,with his specially modified Winchester
    in three-tenths of a second!
    Written by ethanedwards

    Series Cast
    Chuck Connors ... Lucas McCain / ... (168 episodes, 1958-1963)
    Johnny Crawford ... Mark McCain (168 episodes, 1958-1963)
    Paul Fix ... Marshal Micah Torrance / ... (148 episodes, 1958-1963)
    Bill Quinn ... Sweeney the bartender (38 episodes, 1958-1963)
    Patricia Blair ... Lou Mallory (22 episodes, 1962-1963)
    Joe Higgins ... Nils Swenson / ... (21 episodes, 1960-1963)
    Harlan Warde ... John Hamilton (18 episodes, 1958-1962)
    Joan Taylor ... Milly Scott (18 episodes, 1960-1962)
    Hope Summers ... Hattie Denton (16 episodes, 1958-1960)
    John Harmon ... Eddie Halstead - Hotel Clerk / ... (14 episodes, 1958-1962)
    Ralph Moody ... Doc Burrage / ... (12 episodes, 1960-1963)
    John Milford ... Bro Hadley / ... (11 episodes, 1959-1962)

    And many others notably,
    Jack Elam, Denver Pyle, Warren Oates, Lee Van Cleef, John Carradine
    Dennis Hopper, Harry Carey Jr.,William Fawcett
    Michael Landon, Karl Swenson, Sammy Davis Jr.
    James Coburn, Vic Morrow and Michael Ansara

    Series Directed by
    Joseph H. Lewis (51 episodes, 1958-1963)
    Arnold Laven (21 episodes, 1958-1963)
    Arthur H. Nadel (10 episodes, 1962-1963)
    and many others...

    Series Produced
    Arthur Gardner, Jules V. Levy,
    Arnold Laven, Arthur H. Nadel

    Series Writing Credits
    Arthur Browne Jr. (35 episodes, 1959-1963)
    and many more....

    * In the pilot for the series, by Sam Peckinpah (originally written for "Gunsmoke" (1955) but turned down for that show), Chuck Connors' character was named John McCain, not Lucas McCain, and he didn't have a son. It was producer Arnold Laven's idea to make McCain a widower with a son. Also, McCain was originally supposed to have been a dead shot with a pistol. Laven had the idea to use a customized Winchester rifle as McCain's weapon of choice.

    * The Rifleman's Rifle The trick feature of the rifle was a screw pin attached to the large loop lever which was positioned so as to trip the trigger when the ring was slammed home, thus allowing Lucas to rapid-fire the rifle, similarly to a semi-automatic pistol. The trigger trip screw pin was also used in two configurations. Sometimes Chuck had the screw head turned inside close to the trigger. Most of the times he had it on the outside of the trigger guard with a lock nut on the outside to further secure its position. In some of the episodes the screw was taken out completely when rapid fire action was not needed. When properly adjusted, this screw “squeezed” the trigger when the lever was fully closed. From:The Rifleman's Rifle Website

    Filming Locations
    20th Century Fox Ranch, Malibu Creek State Park - 1925 Las Virgenes Road, Calabasas, California, USA
    Iverson Ranch, Chatsworth, Los Angeles, California, USA
    Janss Conejo Ranch, Thousand Oaks, California, USA
    Paramount Ranch - 2813 Cornell Road, Agoura, California, USA
    Republic Studios/CBS Studio Center - 4024 Radford Avenue, Studio City, Los Angeles, California, USA



    Best Wishes
    London- England

    Edited 10 times, last by ethanedwards ().

  • The Rifleman is an American Western television program starring
    Chuck Connors as rancher Lucas McCain and Johnny Crawford as his son, Mark McCain.
    It was set in the 1880s in the town of North Fork, New Mexico Territory.
    The show was filmed in black-and-white, half-hour episodes.
    "The Rifleman" aired on ABC from September 30, 1958 to April 8, 1963
    as a production of Four Star Television.
    It was one of the first prime time series to have a widowed parent raise a child.

    Chuck Connors as The Rifleman,
    was an excellent series with a difference!
    The studio bosses, wanted a series,
    that would set it apart from the many others
    around at the same time.
    So they cast him with a specially adapted
    Winchester rifle,and boy was he fast!!
    It helped him to make a living, by using his skill,
    to help the hapless Sheriff, against the baddies,
    The Rifleman became a top Western TV Classic.

    Best Wishes
    London- England

    Edited once, last by ethanedwards ().

  • I use to watch The Rifleman in re-runs all the time. I thought the way he fired that winchester was so cool. I don't remember many of the plots now, but I was always entertained.


    "I couldn't go to sleep at night if the director didn't call 'cut'. "

  • Just to show you how time flies when you're having fun . . . when I saw this new thread, I thought, "Weren't we discussing The Rifleman recently?"

    Here's what I found -

    I tend to agree with Hondo on this one - it was a favorite of mine (it wasn't ahead of my time :D ).

    I would say that in the 8 to about 15 years old range, kids were pretty impressed with the way he handled that rifle.

    In retrospect, after having watched the show on recent DVD release, it seems there was an agenda there that I didn't "see" when I was kid, but is different from my perspective as an adult (of course there were only two episodes on the DVD, so maybe that wouldn't be true if I saw a bunch more). In addition, Chuck Conners seemed to have kind of a grumpy attitude in general. Maybe it's best to not watch some of our old favorites . . . there is the possibility of being disillusioned. On the other side of that coin, I still enjoy the Little Rascals and the Three Stooges (nyuk, nyuk, nyuk :headbonk: ).

    There were a few other references as well, but that was the most relevant. You want to know how "recent" that post was? 3 years ago!

    For some more information on The Rifleman, check here.

    Chester :newyear:

  • We could see "The Rifleman" in Austria on television about 35 years ago. They aired it once a week on saturday afternoon at the children´s primetime. I always enjoyed Chuck Connors, the fast man with the Winchester!

    I videotaped a few episodes, as they did a rerun 20 years ago. Unfortunately there are no reruns of "The Rifleman" on German or Austrian television any more and there are no DVDs.

    "Never apologize. It´s a sign of weakness."

  • Hi all,

    This show was so popular, that even
    today, some people that have the name
    Connors, still have the nickname "Chuck"


    I'll try one of those black beers....THE QUIET MAN.

  • Well of course he was grumpy. How many times did you see him alone with a woman in that show?

  • An excellent series that i've seen a few times over the years. I was please to see that the series lasted longer than I thought it had. Currently it is playing on the Encore Westerns Channel but, I don't have access to it because I don't have access to the remote control until after everyone goes to bed.

    Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..

  • Mark McCain/Johnny Crawford
    I've just looked at the credits for the actor Johnny Crawford who played the part of Luke MacDonald in the movie El Dorado. He also played the part of Mark McCain in the Rifleman. I've found he had an uncredited part in The Shootist as one of Books' victims in a flashback. I'll think I'll watch the movie again and take a closer look.


  • Mark McCain/Johnny Crawford
    I've just looked at the credits for the actor Johnny Crawford who played the part of Luke MacDonald in the movie El Dorado. He also played the part of Mark McCain in the Rifleman. I've found he had an uncredited part in The Shootist as one of Books' victims in a flashback. I'll think I'll watch the movie again and take a closer look.


    What you'll find is that the part in The Shootist is the scene from Eldorado where Duke shoots Luke McDonald up on that high rock. All the flashbacks in the movie were scenes from past Duke westerns.

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    Best Wishes
    London- England

  • As a youngster this was just one of the many western series which dominated television in the late 50's and early 60's. One of my favorites and on a trivia note, Chuck Connors portrayal of Lucas McCain as father to his son Mark, is still listed as one of the top television dads roles of all time.


    Don't Believe In Surrenders!!!!!

  • I loved The Rifleman!

    One of my favorite Western television series.

    Lucas, Mark, Micah, Lou, Milly, and all did a great job!

    "Monseur, you are a LuLu!" (The Comancheros)

  • Sam Peckinpah was the originator of this show. He wrote a teleplay called "The Sharpshooter" that was a very downbeat story about a sharpshooter who throws a contest when his life is threatened. The producers liked it and suggested that Sam add a son and the contest is thrown because the boy's life is threatened. The script was reworked and was filmed for Zane Grey Theater.
    The suits liked it so much, they bought the concept as a series before the pilot was even shown.
    Sam directed the first episode of the series which featured Warren Oates, R. G. Armstrong and James Drury.

    We deal in lead, friend.

  • Yep-that story/episode is shown as the first show of the series. Leif Erickson was the baddie town boss in it. Had a nice cast with Erickson, R.G. Armstrong, and Sidney Blackmer. It's still a great show and holds up pretty well.

  • One aspect of this series always bothered me as I got a little older. Here's Lucas, the perfect, loving, sensible and respected single Dad - except that before the end of nearly every show he loses it and blasts people into ragdoll shreds. Now how is little Mark going to cope with that trauma growing up? Makes you wonder if old Lucas got mad at his wife for burning the beans one night and he and the kid set out for a new place to live the next morning.

    We deal in lead, friend.

  • I just heard an advertisement on AMC that they are going to start playing all the episodes from the excellent Chuck Connors, Paul Fix and Johnny Crawford TV series: The Rifleman.

    I find it weird that they now want to show old TV shows but, I like the idea too since most of the things they show these days, for lack of proper words--suck.

    Anyway, I can't hardly wait to see these being played ;-))

    Es Ist Verboten Mit Gefangenen In Einzelhaft Zu Sprechen..

  • I watched the first four episodes of The Rifleman yesterday. I enjoyed guest stars like Michael Landon and Dennis Hopper!

    - They released episodes 1-16 here in Germany on DVD now and the box was real cheap.

    "Never apologize. It´s a sign of weakness."