Branded (TV series)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Branded
Chuck Connors Anne Morrell Branded 1965.JPG
Connors as Jason McCord and guest star Anna Morrell, 1965
Genre Western
Created by Larry Cohen
Starring Chuck Connors
John Howard
William Bryant
Opening theme "Branded" by Dominic Frontiere and Alan Alch
Composer(s) Dominic Frontiere
Richard Markowitz (1.13)
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 48
Production
Executive producer(s) Harris Katelman (1965)
Producer(s) Cecil Barker (1965)
Andrew J. Fenady
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) The Branded Company (1965)
Goodson-Todman Productions
Sentinel Productions
Distributor King World Productions
CBS Television Distribution
Release
Original network NBC
Picture format Black-and-white
Color
Original release January 24, 1965 – September 4, 1966

Branded is an American Western series that aired on NBC from 1965 through 1966. It was sponsored by Procter & Gamble in its Sunday night, 8:30 p.m. Eastern time period. The show starred Chuck Connors as Jason McCord, a United States Army cavalry captain who had been drummed out of the service following an unjust accusation of cowardice.

Description[edit]

McCord leaving the fort as the gates close behind him

The opening title credits of each episode in the series feature a depiction of McCord's cashiering: his hat is pulled off, his epaulets are torn from his uniform, his buttons are pulled off, and his saber is broken, while a drum plays over Dominic Frontiere's and Alan Alch's theme song:

All but one man died
There at Bitter Creek
And they said he ran away.

Branded!
Marked with a coward's shame.
What do you do when you're branded?
Well, you fight for your name.

He was innocent
Not a charge was true
But the world would never know.

Branded!
Scorned as the one who ran.
What do you do when you're branded,
And you know you're a man?
Wherever you go for the rest of your life, you must prove
You're a man.

He is then sent out of the fort where this occurred, and the gates are closed behind him.

In the pilot episode, "The Vindicator," McCord is confronted by a newspaper reporter (Claude Akins) who wants a follow-up story on the Bitter Creek massacre. McCord refuses to cooperate. He knows that General James Reed, McCord's mentor, was on a peace mission to meet representatives of the Apache nation at Bitter Creek. His unit of 31 men was attacked by a group of renegade Indians known as "Dog Soldiers." During the attack, McCord realized that the old general had taken leave of his senses. McCord assumed command, but it was too late. McCord was wounded in the battle and left for dead, the only survivor. He remained in a coma for 10 days after the attack. McCord was later charged with desertion, convicted, and cashiered out of the Army.

The reporter tracks down a widow of the Bitter Creek massacre (June Lockhart). Her husband was third in command, and had written several letters questioning Reed's mental state. Those letters would have been enough to grant McCord a new trial and possibly exonerate him, but McCord convinced the widow to burn the letters to protect Reed's reputation. McCord feared that if Reed's reputation were damaged, certain people in Washington, DC, would try to start a new war with the Apaches. McCord chose never to speak about what really happened at Bitter Creek.

McCord retained the pommel of his broken saber. He had the remaining blade sharpened into a long knife, which he used in many episodes. He traveled throughout the Old West, continually confronted by people who refused to believe his innocence, requiring him to prove them wrong.

John M. Pickard, formerly of the related series, Boots and Saddles, appeared in six episodes as General Phil Sheridan. Other notable guest stars included Chris Alcaide, Russ Conway, Don Collier, Burgess Meredith, John Carradine, Pat Conway, Alex Cord, Janet De Gore, Dolores del Rio, Chad Everett, I. Stanford Jolley, Martin Landau, June Lockhart, Gregg Palmer, Larry Pennell, Burt Reynolds, and Lee Van Cleef.

Production[edit]

Created by Larry Cohen, the show was co-produced for most of its run by Mark Goodson-Bill Todman Productions in association with Sentinel Productions, Inc. Goodson-Todman was primarily known for game and panel shows such as What's My Line? and The Price Is Right. Present-day U.S. rights to Branded came into the ownership of King World before it became CBS Television Distribution. Many stations that carry Branded today usually schedule the program alongside others about drifters in the Old West including Aaron Spelling's The Guns of Will Sonnett, which starred Walter Brennan and Dack Rambo.

The series followed Connors' series The Rifleman, but it did not have that show's longevity, lasting only 48 episodes over two seasons. The first season was shot in black and white, the second in color.

Andrew J. Fenady served as the producer, later executive producer, on the series. Fenady was also the producer of The Rebel.

Episode list[edit]

Season 1 (black and white)[edit]

Episode # Episode title Original airdate
1-1 "Survival" January 24, 1965
1-2 "The Vindicator" (pilot) January 31, 1965
1-3 "The Test" February 7, 1965
1-4 "The Rules of the Game" February 14, 1965
1-5 "The Bounty" February 21, 1965
1-6 "Leap Upon Mountains..." February 28, 1965
1-7 "Coward, Step Aside" March 7, 1965
1-8 "The Mission" (part one)* March 14, 1965
1-9 "The Mission" (part two)* March 21, 1965
1-10 "The Mission" (part three)* March 28, 1965
1-11 "The First Kill" April 4, 1965
1-12 "Very Few Heroes" April 11, 1965
1-13 "One Way Out" April 18, 1965
1-14 "That the Brave Endure" April 25, 1965
1-15 "Taste of Poison" May 2, 1965
1-16 "Price of a Name" May 23, 1965

*In color

Parts One, Two, and Three of "The Mission" were later released as a movie titled Broken Saber, with new footage added featuring Allyn Joslyn.

The episode "Coward, Step Aside" featured Johnny Crawford, Connors's co-star from their earlier series, The Rifleman.

Season 2 (color)[edit]

Episode # Episode title Original airdate
2-1 "Judge Not" September 12, 1965
2-2 "Now Join the Human Race" September 19, 1965
2-3 "Mightier Than the Sword" September 26, 1965
2-4 "I Killed Jason McCord" October 3, 1965
2-5 "The Bar Sinister" October 10, 1965
2-6 "Seward's Folly" October 17, 1965
2-7 "Salute the Soldier Briefly" October 24, 1965
2-8 "The Richest Man in Boot Hill" October 31, 1965
2-9 "Fill No Glass For Me" (part one) November 7, 1965
2-10 "Fill No Glass For Me" (part two) November 14, 1965
2-11 "The Greatest Coward on Earth" November 21, 1965
2-12 "$10,000 For Durango" November 28, 1965
2-13 "Romany Roundup" (part one) December 5, 1965
2-14 "Romany Roundup" (part two) December 12, 1965
2-15 "A Proud Town" December 19, 1965
2-16 "The Golden Fleece" January 2, 1966
2-17 "The Wolfers" January 9, 1966
2-18 "This Stage of Fools" January 16, 1966
2-19 "A Destiny Which Made Us Brothers" January 23, 1966
2-20 "McCord's Way" January 30, 1966
2-21 "Nice Day for a Hanging" February 6, 1966
2-22 "Barbed Wire" February 13, 1966
2-23 "Yellow For Courage" February 20, 1966
2-24 "Call To Glory" (part one) February 27, 1966
2-25 "Call To Glory" (part two) March 6, 1966
2-26 "Call To Glory" (part three) March 13, 1966
2-27 "The Ghost of Murietta" March 20, 1966
2-28 "The Assassins" (part one) March 27, 1966
2-29 "The Assassins" (part two) April 3, 1966
2-30 "Headed For Doomsday" April 10, 1966
2-31 "Cowards Die Many Times" April 17, 1966
2-32 "Kellie" April 24, 1966

DVD releases[edit]

Timeless Media Group released both seasons of Branded on DVD in Region 1 in 2004-2005. Season 1 was released on August 3, 2004,[1] and season 2 was released on February 8, 2005.[2] On February 16, 2010, Timeless Media Group released Branded: The Complete Series, a six-disc box set featuring all 48 episodes of the series and several bonus features.[3] Three minutes, however, are missing from each segment. Broken Saber (the film re-editing of "The Mission Parts One, Two, And Three") is not included.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Branded: Season One". Timelessvideo.com. Retrieved 2014-03-16. 
  2. ^ "Branded: The Complete Second Season". Timelessvideo.com. Retrieved 2014-03-16. 
  3. ^ "Branded DVD news: Announcement for Branded - The Complete Series". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved 2014-03-16. 

External links[edit]