Monday, June 22, 2015

Classic TV: Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theatre (1956)

Four Star co-founder Dick Powell must've been a fan of the Western novels of Zane Grey, such that he obtained the license to adapt some of those novels for an anthology series he produced for CBS.

Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theatre lasted 5 seasons (1956-61), and, other than standard Western fare of the period, didn't really do anything to make Grey's work stand out from the zillion other oaters on the air at the time. Back then, Four Star was specializing in Westerns, moving to crime dramas a short time later.

Cable viewers now get the chance to see this long missing series, as it airs on Grit, a digital subchannel that recently made its debut in upstate NY. Grit runs a block of Zane Grey every morning, but some episodes don't appear to have held up well, nearly 60 years after their debut.

Let's take you back to the series opener, "You Only Run Once",with Robert Ryan & Cloris Leachman.

You've seen one Western from this period, well, really, you've seen them all.

Rating: B-.

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