Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 26

Thread: Gunsmoke

  1. #1
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    7,589

    Gunsmoke

    I like to accomplish a bunch of things in the mornings, then have lunch and then a "date" with my dog Suzi on the couch. I watch Gunsmoke. I've gotten to love that show. I started out watching the later versions of it, but then they replaced it with 2 half-hour earlier versions, which are even better. I know so much of it is romanticized, but I still like seeing the simple lives.......and it isn't always pretty. The doc doesn't know that much, you can't call anyone when you're in trouble, no vaccinations, no much law around (except Marshall Dillon, who takes care of enough for 10 men....haha).

    The black and white doesn't bother me at all. And what a job they had just taking care of their transportation (horses). Never enough food. Did people really drink that much alcohol back then? Where did Kitty, Doc, Matt, Festus and Chester go to the bathroom??

    I love the night scenes when all you hear is crickets and frogs. Ahhhhhhhhh......

    I just can't imagine what an incredibly hard life that was back then.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    3,258
    I like watching the great old pre-revisionist Westerns. Our culture suffered with the demise of the singing cowboy.

    I also really liked Deadwood. You get more of a feel for how smelly and filthy and unhealthy life was. I understand that until fairly recently in history people often preferred alcoholic beverages because they were safer than available water. That, and it was easier to deal with life's hardships if you had a slight buzz on.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    286
    Yes, whenever I feel I'm getting fed up with modern technology, I have to remind myself that without modern medical care I would be dead or suffering terribly right now. (I tend to think modern medicine is the only unalloyed good part of modern technology, but that's a separate discussion.)

    I don't know what social historians say about drinking, but I'd guess that yes, people did drink a lot back then, as the popularity of temperance movements suggests. When you are in pain most of the time, as a lot of people were due to the crude state of medicine, alcohol must have seemed like a good analgesic. Plus there were probably a lot of people self-medicating with alcohol because they were suffering from ailments like depression (I think my own grandfather was one such).

    Recently I've read a few articles that say historians are reassessing many of the stereotypes of the "wild west." Two things stand out--first, that notwithstanding the popular image of the cowboy as a square-jawed white guy, many cowboys were in fact black, Indian, and Hispanic. It was not a prestigious occupation. Second, the wild west was evidently not so wild. In most towns, crime was fairly rare--and gun control was very common.

    In short, life was indeed tough, but mostly because of poverty, ignorance and disease. My cousin dug up the death certificate of my paternal great grandmother, who died in her 40s. The cause of death was listed as "exhaustion."

  4. #4
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    7,589
    Yeah, I was thinking that about the alcohol. And yeah.......the smell!

  5. #5
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    7,589
    Quote Originally Posted by oldhat View Post
    Yes, whenever I feel I'm getting fed up with modern technology, I have to remind myself that without modern medical care I would be dead or suffering terribly right now. (I tend to think modern medicine is the only unalloyed good part of modern technology, but that's a separate discussion.)

    I don't know what social historians say about drinking, but I'd guess that yes, people did drink a lot back then, as the popularity of temperance movements suggests. When you are in pain most of the time, as a lot of people were due to the crude state of medicine, alcohol must have seemed like a good analgesic. Plus there were probably a lot of people self-medicating with alcohol because they were suffering from ailments like depression (I think my own grandfather was one such).

    Recently I've read a few articles that say historians are reassessing many of the stereotypes of the "wild west." Two things stand out--first, that notwithstanding the popular image of the cowboy as a square-jawed white guy, many cowboys were in fact black, Indian, and Hispanic. It was not a prestigious occupation. Second, the wild west was evidently not so wild. In most towns, crime was fairly rare--and gun control was very common.

    In short, life was indeed tough, but mostly because of poverty, ignorance and disease. My cousin dug up the death certificate of my paternal great grandmother, who died in her 40s. The cause of death was listed as "exhaustion."
    I just have to think of some of the pain I've had in my life, and can't imagine just having to deal with it, with no help in sight or end to the pain. So much suffering. Yep, it makes me appreciate 'some' of modern life!

    Some of the Gunsmoke episodes are pretty depressing........which makes me tend to believe that was more like it was. Makes you wonder how anyone survived!

  6. #6
    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    2,117
    Gunsmoke is great. I am a western TV and movie fan and it's a step above most older westerns and holds it's own with the glamour and fancy filming of modern ones. I'm enjoying the old half hour shows, too. Dennis Weaver is more entertaining than Festus, but Burt Reynolds was a nice addition in the later ones. Miss Kitty was a looker in the older ones but never lost her lady-like charm. The drinking has impressed me, too. I suppose it might be as much a sign of the days when it was filmed as much as any factual or romantic images of the old west. One thing I've wondered about is how much lead Matt Dillon is carrying around. He gets shot about every other show.

    I have looked it up and forgotten the specifics, but it was quite popular in its day and ran for a very long time. I even like the theme music.

  7. #7
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    7,589
    Quote Originally Posted by Rogar View Post
    Gunsmoke is great. I am a western TV and movie fan and it's a step above most older westerns and holds it's own with the glamour and fancy filming of modern ones. I'm enjoying the old half hour shows, too. Dennis Weaver is more entertaining than Festus, but Burt Reynolds was a nice addition in the later ones. Miss Kitty was a looker in the older ones but never lost her lady-like charm. The drinking has impressed me, too. I suppose it might be as much a sign of the days when it was filmed as much as any factual or romantic images of the old west. One thing I've wondered about is how much lead Matt Dillon is carrying around. He gets shot about every other show.

    I have looked it up and forgotten the specifics, but it was quite popular in its day and ran for a very long time. I even like the theme music.
    I wondered the same thing Rogar, about Matt's body and the number of times he's been shot! And it amazes how many times people survive the shootings. I remember one episode where someone had a gangrenous leg and Matt removed it all by himself. Uh.....how'd he do that? Doc's done it too. I would guess it's not a simple procedure.

    I remember my grandpap used to watch westerns. It used to be around mid 1950s. He sat in his big old oak rocking chair (which I now have) and peeled and ate apples while watching the shows.
    I love the music to Gunsmoke too. It sort of brings a melancholy into me. Yes, Miss Kitty was beautiful in the early shows.......much more natural looking. I wonder when that black mole showed up. haha
    I don't drink alcohol, but they sure make it look good. I find Festus pretty entertaining though. He says some pretty funny things. I wonder if Dennis Weaver had any problems in real life, from having to walk with that straight leg all the time?
    The ME TV station likes to change things up at times. I hope they don't change Gunsmoke for awhile.

  8. #8
    Simpleton Alan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    4,816
    Quote Originally Posted by Rogar View Post
    Dennis Weaver is more entertaining than Festus.......
    Oh, I don't know about that:

    [the spokes on Doc's buggy are loose]
    Dr. Galen 'Doc' Adams: How much is it going to cost me to have 'em fixed?
    Festus Haggen: Shouldn't 'mount t'much; fifty cents'll do... Soakin' in the crik a few hours'll swell them spokes back tight as pin feathers on a prairie chicken's rump.
    Dr. Galen 'Doc' Adams: Soakin' in the crik?
    Festus Haggen: Sure.
    Dr. Galen 'Doc' Adams: And while you're sitting there, letting the wheels soak, I suppose you'll do a little fishing?
    Festus Haggen: Now that you mention it...
    Dr. Galen 'Doc' Adams: So I end up paying you fifty cents to fish.
    Festus Haggen: Well, Doc, I'm gonna have t'dig me some worms, catch me some grasshoppers. That's tirin'. If it wasn't for them wheels needin' soakin', I wouldn't have to....
    "Things should be made as simple as possible, but not one bit simpler." ~ Albert Einstein

  9. #9
    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    2,117
    Alan, I have to revise my opinion based on evidence. Festus was pretty dang good. Some of the talks between Doc and Festus are treasures. Chester was good, too.

    In my opinion, the other great TV western was Rawhide with Clint Eastwood and Gil Favor.

  10. #10
    Senior Member CathyA's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    7,589
    LOL Alan! yep, that's Festus for ya.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •