Tuesday, August 05, 2003

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While reading Bill Sherman's review of the new show Peacemakers, in which he mentions the early 70s Richard Boone vehicle Hec Ramsey, I was reminded of another show of a year or two earlier, Bearcats! .

I was all of eleven when this show aired in 1971, and I suppose I was just the right age for this sort of thing. Also, it seems that when I get attached to a Western film or TV program, it's usually always an off-the-wall one (Wild Wild West (60s)or Valley of Gwangi, anyone?), and this one certainly qualified. Essentially, Bearcats was a hybrid action-adventure and western series about two soldiers of fortune, played by Rod (Pal's The Time Machine, The Birds) Taylor and Dennis Cole who traveled around the turn-of-the-century American west in a 1914 Stutz Bearcat righting wrongs and looking for adventure. For their services, they insisted on being paid with a blank check.

I wish I could go into a long, detailed explanation of what happened in this show, but hey, let's face it- that was 32 years ago and I just don't remember all that much. I remember one exciting episode in which some nutball ex-WWI German fighter pilot was flying around causing trouble and the Bearcats were hired to shut him down, and did so with the help of a Gatling gun which they mounted on the back of the car. The action scenes, with the pilot swooping down and the guys firing back at him, were pretty darn cool. I know I never missed an episode when I could help it, but it must have been up against some really popular show on another network, because it only ran for 8 months before it was cancelled in December of '71.

Anyway, I did a Google search or two for the program so I could write a semi-intelligent post, but I didn't turn up much. Here's TV Tome's entry, which features episode guides, and the link in the above paragraph will take you to another site which provides a little more info. Here's IMDb's entry.

I really wish that TV Land or some other network would rerun these...originally I thought there weren't enough episodes but according to TV Tome.com there were 13, including the two hour pilot. I won't hold my breath.