The Young Riders

Young Riders

About The Young Riders

(1989-1992, ABC)

Set along the Pony Express Trail at the dawn of the Civil War, this early 1990s action series introduces us to beloved anti-heroes before they became myths.  

Josh Brolin is Jimmy Hickok, later known as “Wild Bill.” Stephen Baldwin is “Buffalo Bill” Cody, the smart aleck. Ty Miller is “The Kid,” small town boy and quiet enforcer. Gregg Rainwater is Running Buck Cross, half Native American and a frequent target of discrimination. Travis Fine is Ike, haunted by childhood memories of his parents’ death. And Yvonne Suhor is Lou, a tomboy masquerading as male because the Pony Express won’t hire girls. Added for later seasons are Don Franklin as freeborn African-American Noah and Christopher Pettiet as teenaged Jesse James. Veteran character actor Anthony Zerbe plays the crew’s mentor and Melissa Leo and Clare Wren are the house mothers.

With stories about racism, mob mentality, PTSD, gender identity, and Native American genocide, Young Riders brings a contemporary human rights sensibility to its Old West setting.

Notable guest stars: Cynthia Nixon, Brian Keith, David Carradine, Richard Roundtree, Jay O. Sanders, Frances Fisher, David Soul, Frederic Forrest, Della Reese, John Slattery.

Created by Ed Spielman. Music by John Debney (Emmy winner). 


Josh Brolin, Stephen Baldwin, Ty Miller, Gregg Rainwater, Yvonne Suhor, Anthony Zerbe, Travis Fine, Melissa Leo, Brett Cullen, Don Franklin, Clare Wren, Christopher Pettiet, Jamie Walters