Tuesday, August 16, 2011
'Tis a Puzzle
I've been buying jigsaw puzzles recently. I prefer Old West themes, or TV cowboys and the like. A recent acquisition was this studio shot of Buffalo Bill, Jr., and Calamity. The TV show BUFFALO BILL, JR ran from 1955-56. Here's what someone had to say about it on IMBD:
Gene Autry was in television in a major way during its early days. Not just as an actor on his own show, but his Flying A productions brought many other shows to television like Range Rider, Annie Oakley and this one Buffalo Bill, Jr.
The premise for this show involved a kinder, gentler Judge Roy Bean character, Judge Ben 'Fair and Square' Wiley played by Harry Cheshire. That moniker was always how he was addressed and referred to. Cheshire found the young adolescent Dick Jones roaming the Black Hills after an Indian massacre of a wagon train. The adolescent was carrying an infant girl who was to grow up to be Nancy Gilbert.
Wiley took them in and raised them and renamed them after those western icons Buffalo Bill and Calamity Jane. Jones was most assuredly not the son of Bill Cody. But he certainly could ride and shoot.
From his earliest days Jones was a trick rider and all around western performer since his discovery by movie cowboy hero Hoot Gibson. He got into acting and kept real busy as a child actor, probably most famous as the Senate page in Mr. Smith Goes To Washington. Jones was in that tradition of Hollywood child stars who grew up and played callow youths until way beyond his actual years. Jones was 28 when he played Buffalo Bill, Jr. and his family name in the show was Bridger who was certainly another western icon.
As this was a kid's show young Jones had absolutely no contact with the opposite sex other than helping to raise his kid sister. The more sophisticated audience of today would not appreciate this film. Still it wasn't a bad series for the year it lasted.