Classic Westerns on getTV

Banjo Hackett

The warm weather is upon us, so it’s time to saddle up and spend your weekends under the Big Sky! getTV’s Sundays Under the Big Sky programming block continues in June, with classic Western shows every Sunday morning starting at 6a ET. One can’t-miss highlight: our popular new addition How The West Was Won re-starts from the beginning this month. If you’ve been meaning to sample this Emmy-winning series starring James Arness (Gunsmoke), mark your calendars for Sunday, June 16 when getTV presents the 1976 pilot filmThe Macahans at 12:30p ET

And the Old West action kicks off early on Saturdays too, with the “historical noir” series Yancy Derringer at 6a ET, followed by the Texas Ranger shenanigans of Laredo at 6:30a ET, Kurt Russell and Tim Matheson as brothers on The Quest for a lost sister at 7:45a, and Dan Haggerty as legendary mountain man Grizzly Adams at 9a ET. 

We’ve also got classic Western films on weekend afternoons and evenings to keep you in the Old West mood all day long. This month we’ll screen Banjo Hackett (1976) with Don Meredith and Chuck Connors, Fury At Gunsight Pass (1956) with Neville Brand and Richard LongJubal (1956) with Glenn Ford and Ernest Borgnine, and Decision at Sundown (1957) with Randolph Scott and Noah Beery Jr.!

Here’s a round-up of the films playing this month with airtimes, do you won’t miss a single shoot-em-up: 

1. Banjo Hackett (1976) — June 1 at 2p ET, June 16 at 6p ET

Once upon a time, “Dandy” Don Meredith was one of the most popular personalities in America. The Dallas Cowboys quarterback — signed in 1960 before the franchise even had a name — went on to become a founding member of the Monday Night Football broadcast team a decade later. Hollywood beckoned, and Meredith leveraged his rural Texas charm into a 20-year acting career. This star-studded 1976 TV movie was a pilot for a series that never was. And that’s too bad, because Meredith as quirky horse trader Banjo and Ike Eisennmann (the Witch Mountain movies) as his nine-year-old nephew make a fun, engaging pair! Look for Chuck ConnorsSlim PickensL.Q. JonesDan O’HerlihyAnne Francis, and Gloria DeHaven in supporting roles. 

2. Fury At Gunsight Pass (1956) — June 1 at 4:20p, June 23 at 6p ET

What better time to rob a bank than when the entire town is at a wedding? This “caper Western” features Neville Brand (getTV’s Laredoand David Brian as thieves planning a robbery in the town of Gunsight Pass. When one half the gang double crosses the other, the whole heist goes awry — and both sets of crooks start searching for the missing loot. Fury At Gunsight Pass is a Twilight Zone-esque morality play from director Fred F. Sears (Earth vs. The Flying Saucers) and stars Richard Long (The Big ValleyNanny And The Professor) as the young bridegroom whose wedding becomes the scene of the crime!

3. Jubal (1956) — June 8 at 1p ET, June 30 at 7:35p

If you like your classic Westerns with a dash of Technicolor noir, Jubal is the film for you. Glenn Ford stars as drifter Jubal Troop, rescued by jovial rancher Shep Horgan (Ernest Borgnine) and given a job as foreman. Low key Jubal disrupts the tense balance of the ranch, drawing the vengeful ire of a bitter hand (Rod Steiger) and the attention of Shep’s bored young wife Mae (Valerie French). But Jubal has his eye on another woman, and that doesn’t sit well with the jealous Mae. Directed by Delmar Daves (3:10 To Yuma) from the novel by Paul WellmanJubal plays like a Western variation on The Postman Always Rings Twice. It also has an all-star team of film icons, including Charles BronsonNoah Beery JrJack Elam and Steiger at his scenery-chewing finest!

4. Decision at Sundown (1957) — June 16 at 8:15p ET, June 29 at 2p ET

Director Budd Boetticher made seven films with Western icon (and uncredited producer) Randolph Scott between 1956 and 1960. Decision at Sundown (1957) is the third, and one of the more enjoyable of the series. The usually heroic Scott stars as Bart Allison, a wronged man on a quest for bloody vengeance. His target is Tate Kimbrough (John Carroll), the boss of the small town of Sundown, and the man Bart holds responsible for his wife’s death. Bart and his buddy Sam (Noah Beery Jr.) ride into town to put a stop to Kimbrough’s wedding, but end up in a standoff that ends in a surprisingly non-cliched way. This Technicolor Western also features familiar faces Valerie French (from Jubal) as Kimbrough’s mistress, Andrew Duggan as a corrupt sheriff, Ray Teal as a rancherand Richard Deacon (Mel Cooley on The Dick Van Dyke Show) as the minister. Unlike many 1950s Westerns with scenic vistas and sweeping scope, Decision at Sundown is tense and claustrophobic, confining its story to one day and a handful of sets. Can smaller budgets be an advantage? They are in Decision at Sundown.

For more, visit the getTV schedule.

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