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Bonanza

Latest Video Clips

Bonanza: Bar Brawl

This isn't the first bar brawl for the Cartwright boys, and it certainly won't be the last. (01:30)

Bathing Beauty

Nothing like seeing a grown man in a bath. Little Joe doesn't want to go with Hoss so he takes Hoss's clothes and hangs him out to dry. (01:31)

Making a Mill

You almost expect to hear "Whistle While You Work." The Cartwrights help Tom Edwards to build a mill. (00:57)

Bonanza Theme Song

(00:50)

About Bonanza

Bonanza was one of the longest running and most popular of all TV Westerns. For 14 seasons, audiences enthusiastically tuned in to see the High Sierra adventures of the Cartwright clan. Nestled above the shores of Lake Tahoe is the Ponderosa Ranch, home of Ben Cartwright and his sons Adam, Hoss and Joe (a.k.a. "Little Joe"). Each of the young men was born to a different deceased mother, making poor Ben a three-time widower. Strong characters and intriguing plots helped to set Bonanza apart from the usual gun-slinging formula shows of its heyday.

One reason for Bonanza's success was the show's attention to script development. The characters were allowed to grow and evolve; story lines crossed into controversial topics, exploring racial tension, domestic violence and substance abuse. Each of the Cartwright men developed relationships with women on the show; although almost every woman that came into their lives died tragically.

When it premiered on NBC Sept. 12, 1959, Bonanza was not an immediate ratings winner, but the show remained on the air due to the fact that it was one of few shows filmed in color. After barely surviving its first two seasons on Saturday nights, the show moved to Sunday and became a hit: It was the No. 1 show four years in a row from 1964 to 1967. In 10 of its 14 years on the air, Bonanza was in the national Top 10 -- quite a comeback for those Cartwrights.

Bonanza TV Schedule

Friday
June 24
12:00pm
The Unwanted
Ben's friend, Mansfield, & his daughter, Lorrie, visit the Ponderosa. Mansfield was a Marshall for many years, which hasn't left him time to be a father. After Lorrie meets someone, she begins to realize her father love for her.
TV-PG
Monday
June 27
12:00pm
The Fence
Ben & Hoss visit their friend, Sam, but are surprised when soldiers show up. Unknown to Ben & Hoss, Sam is really Thomas Andrews, who ran a Confederate prison camp during the Civil War, & the prisoners are out for revenge.
TV-PG
Tuesday
June 28
12:00pm
The Witness
Jenny steps forward as the only witness to a robbery & identifies the bandits as the Logan gang. The Sheriff want to put Jenny in jail for protective custody, but ends of staying on the Ponderosa, where it's discovered she lies
TV-PG

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