The Rifleman television series

The Rifleman

Something for the weekend.  The theme from one of the my favorite childhood shows, The Rifleman.  Broadcast from 1958 to 1963, The Rifleman featured Chuck Connors as Lucas McCain, the eponymous star of the show, and his son Mark McCain, portrayed by Johnny Crawford.  Unlike almost all other westerns of the time, the title character, Lucas McCain, was not a sheriff, a rich rancher or a gunfighter, but rather a widowed farmer raising his son near the town of Northfork.  Each of the 30 minute shows was a skillfully done morality play focusing on the human condition.  Some of the episodes had plots drawn from the Bible and placed in a western setting.  McCain’s modified Winchester 73 almost always came into play, but simple gun play and violence was not the focus of the series.  The episodes were studded with appearances of actors and actresses who would go on to achieve fame, and with frequent appearances by classic Western character actors and actresses.

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