karen9: (Default)
I've now watched all five sets of DVDs of How the West was Won. I don't remember seeing the last eleven episodes before. I'm disappointed with them, except for three good ones, two of which continued the stories from the third set.

Most of these later episodes focus on one or two of the characters other than the main two, Zeb (James Arness) and Luke (Bruce Boxleitner.) Zeb and Luke are by far the most interesting characters and Luke has an ongoing story-line that isn't satisfactorily resolved by the end. The first three sets had ongoing story-lines woven together but in the last two sets the stories are stand-alones.The last two episodes deal with Chinese immigrants and slave trading of women in Mexico. The subjects are interesting but not what I want from a western.

Zeb is Luke's uncle. He's a "mountain man" of great experience. He's 6.7" tall and an inexorable force in pursuit of his principles and anyone threatening his family. Luke is a young man on the run after the Civil War. He gets a reputation as a gunfighter and has some hairy adventures, sometimes rescued by Zeb. In the fourth  and fifth sets of episodes he's become respectable, which makes him less interesting. He also cuts his lovely long hair, to my dismay.

The first, second and third sets (the series don't coincide with the DVD sets) are the best, the third in particular being exciting, leading to a showdown between Luke and the sheriff who's been hounding him for years and between Luke and a gunfighter  who blames Luke for his brother's death. Luke and another sheriff's daughter are in love, but she's dropped after the fourth set. It's a pity because they have a lively relationship full of passionate arguments and passionate making-up. I think the couple have excellent chemistry and their romance would have been a good subject for further episodes.  

I'm glad I bought this series. I'll re-watch many episodes.
karen9: (Arthur horse)




I recently bought the first series of How the West Was Won: the Macahans. The DVDs have been produced recently by a Swedish company, with subtitles in Swedish and Finnish. It seems the series was popular in the Scandinavian countries.

It's a western series from the late 70's about a family moving from Virginia to Oregon at the time the Civil War breaks out. The father and elder son become involved in the Civil War. The uncle is a "mountain man," an oldtime trapper and hunter who knows Indian ways.

I think it's aged well except for the gung-ho introductions about pioneers and the great American spirit!

Bruce Boxleitner plays the elder son, Luke, a bonus.

I have extravagantly ordered the other three series.

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karen9

May 2016

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