January 08, 2009

James and Artemus

I think that if I'm going to find out what kinds of Blu-ray discs are easily available to me, I'm going to have to walk over to Best Buy. I tried checking out Fred's DVD section just now, and they weren't really organized well. I asked specifically about any of the BBC or Discovery nature Blu-rays and they didn't have any of them.

While I was looking at the shelves, I noticed a couple of DVD bricks that intrigued me. Season 1 and season 4 of "The Wild Wild West".

I loved that show. I know exactly how they sold it to the network: "James Bond in the old west". But the character concepts for the two leads were very well done, and the casting was inspired. James Conrad as Jim West was always wonderful, and Ross Martin as Artemus Gordon was a joy. And of course, Dr. Loveless, the best villain the show had. I think he was in at least a dozen episodes. (UPDATE: IMDB says ten.)

I picked up both of those bricks. The series didn't have any kind of continuity, so there's no problem with having a gap. And between the two seasons I'm sure there will be at least a couple of Loveless episodes.

It looks like the first season was B/W. I never noticed that when I watched it, back in the day, because we only had BW TVs. I thought it ran on NBC, but maybe it premiered before NBC went full-color (along with adopting the peacock as its logo). I guess that explains why the fourth season cost $10 more than the first season.

UPDATE: My memory really is going bad. It was on CBS.

UPDATE: Another difference: for the first season (at least) they really had the train and used it in their filming. I remember that in the later episodes it was just stock footage.

Was that the engine from the Hoyt Hotel? I know the Hoyt Hotel engine was used in the series "Petticoat Junction", and later they cleaned it up and used it for the Bicentennial train, and I don't even know what happened to it later. (And I don't think the Hoyt Hotel even exists any more.)

Wikipedia says I'm right, at least for the pilot episode (which is what I'm watching now). But for the regular series they used a different one.

UPDATE: Part of the formula is beautiful women.


And in the pilot it's Suzanne Pleshette. She'll do quite nicely, thank you very much.

UPDATE: And she ends up with a pistol, which she fires at West. Seven times, without reloading. (Uh, yeah.)

UPDATE: And having finished the pilot, now I can understand why it was an easy sell to the network. It's really good.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste in General Entertainment at 03:50 PM | Comments (11) | Add Comment
Post contains 463 words, total size 3 kb.


Any idea what type of revolver it was?  Colt revolvers held 6 shots, but there were revolvers back then that held more than that.  The Le Mat revolver held 10 shots: 9 around the edge and a 10th in the center that doubled as the center pin.   Even today Smith & Wesson makes revolvers in 7, 8, and 10-round capacities.


Posted by: mparker762 at January 08, 2009 05:05 PM (BO7Ab)

2 You're no fun!

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at January 08, 2009 05:48 PM (+rSRq)

3 The French were making 20 shot(!) revolvers into the 1920's.

I agree that Wild Wild West was a very cool show. I did not know that the first season was in B&W...most likely because those eps weren't rerun in my area.

Posted by: The Brickmuppet at January 08, 2009 06:19 PM (V5zw/)

4 Some of the plots would get very science fiction. I remember one that seemed to be derived from an H. G. Wells story. But oh yes, it would have a hot chick in every episode.

Posted by: toadold at January 08, 2009 07:41 PM (zcbXo)


They stole from borrowed from were inspired a great deal by Wells and Verne. Also Poe.

In the later part of the series it really got quite campy. In the first season, based on what I've seen so far, they tried to be more serious.

The second episode wasn't really very good. J.D. Cannon didn't make a very good villain, and his master plot was stupid, and the show overall dragged. BUT...

the third episode, which I haven't watched yet, is the first appearance of Dr. Loveless in the series, and his eps were always outstanding.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at January 08, 2009 09:00 PM (+rSRq)



That's the beautiful woman in ep 2.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at January 08, 2009 09:19 PM (+rSRq)

7 Maria had a seven-bullet revolver moment in Sakura Wars TV. Unfortunately for her, we've seen her cylinder and know it's good for only six shots. ;p

Posted by: Avatar_exADV at January 08, 2009 09:50 PM (pWQz4)


Rushuna has at least one 7-shot sequence, and her pistol definitely only holds 6. I think I remember that from the first episode, in fact.

On the other hand, that series is partly tongue-in-cheek and I wouldn't be surprised if they did it deliberately.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at January 08, 2009 09:53 PM (+rSRq)

9 Is it absolutely clear that she fired seven shots without reloading?  I mean, Rushuna has been described to me as "a female Vash the Stampede", so it seems likely that she could reload faster than any ordinary observer could see.

Posted by: metaphysician at January 09, 2009 08:11 AM (h4nEy)


Er, no.  Rushuna's method of reloading is, uh, too unique.  Can't be missed.

I really thought they shouldn't have put it in the OP, so it would be more of a WTF? moment when she first does it. 

Posted by: ubu at January 09, 2009 08:37 AM (i7ZAU)


They always show Rushuna reloading in combat, because it's fan service.

She does the spin thing usually, but she can do it in a somersault too, and in other ways. But they always show it.

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at January 09, 2009 11:09 AM (+rSRq)

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