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Gunsmoke

About Gunsmoke

Premiering on CBS in September 1955 and completing its network run September 1975, Gunsmoke is the longest-running dramatic series in the history of TV. Two of its stars, James Arness and Milburn Stone, remained all 20 seasons, with Amanda Blake a close second, departing after 19 years.

The series started out as a half-hour show, and expanded to an hour in its seventh season. Prior to Gunsmoke (and The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp, which premiered the same week), Western shows generally focused on fantasy characters such as the Lone Ranger and Hopalong Cassidy, holdovers from movie and radio serials. Gunsmoke was one of the earliest "adult Westerns," centering around the exploits of Marshal Matt Dillon (James Arness) in the frontier town of Dodge City, Kan. in 1873. His kindly companion was Doc Adams (Milburn Stone), the town physician who spent many hours chugging beers at the Long Branch Saloon, owned and operated by the shapely Kitty Russell. Over the years there were several changes in the supporting cast, most notably the replacement of Matt's loyal deputy, Chester Goode (Dennis Weaver), with hillbilly deputy Festus Haggen (Ken Curtis).

Gunsmoke started a longtime trend for TV westerns. At one point there were 30 of them on the air at the same time. But Gunsmoke outlasted the others and at the time of its cancelation in 1975, it was the only show of its kind still on the air.

Gunsmoke TV Schedule

Thursday
April 24
11:38am
My Brother's Keeper
Seeking refuge from a storm, Festus Haggen stumbles into a cave where an old Indian is dying.
TV-G
12:49pm
Lynott
A one-time marshal saves Matt Dillon's life and agrees to fill in for Matt when the lawman's wounds confine him to bed.
TV-G
2:00pm
Lijah
A hanging-minded jury sits in judgment of Lijah, a stern, silent mountain man accused of three wanton slayings.
TV-G
Friday
April 25
11:38am
Traflon
Marshal Dillon determines to catch a cold-eyed gunslinger who has killed a sheriff and a priest in a small Kansas town.
TV-G
12:49pm
Drago
An old trailblazer sets out to track down the slayer of a woman who had befriended him. Buddy Ebsen guest-stars.
TV-G
2:00pm
No Tomorrow
A young man is caught in the web of a trumped-up rustling charge, jailbreak, and murder.
TV-G
Monday
April 28
10:30am
11:30am
12:40pm

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