Sometimes Only a Cowboy Will Do

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If you’re like me, you love to watch historical shows and movies, but really crave anything with a western flair.  There have too little of them lately, too few and far between.  My latest fan crush is OUTLANDER (Scottish–not western but wonderful) and my biggest gripe is that there were only 7 made for Showtime and the next full season doesn’t start until April 2015!  That’s a long time for an avid fan!  

Here’s a list of IMDb’s (Internet Movie Database) Highest Rated Western Television Shows.  I think you’d be surprised with some of them.  

1.    Deadwood   2004












2.    The Adventures of Brisco County   1993

3.    Trigun  1998 Animated

4.    Have Gun Will Travel  1957

5.     Saber Rider and The Star Sheriffs  1987 Animated 

6.      Hell on Wheels   2011

7.      Zorro  1957

8.    The Rifleman   1958

9.    Maverick    1959

10.   The Wild Wild West  1965

11.   Rawhide   1959

12.   Longmire   2012

13.   Gunsmoke  1955

14.   The Big Valley   1965

15.   King Fu   1972

Hell on Wheels





I was surprised Bonanza wasn’t in the top 15.  It came in at  #17, while Little House of the Prairie was #19 and Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, was 20th. Looks like westerns rocked the television screens in the 1950’s.   Now, occasionally a good western will come our way, but not often enough if you ask me.

Is your favorite on this list?  What are your top 5 westerns, movies or television series?  

I have a great two-in-one Desire to give away to one blogger today!  (Suddenly Expecting and The Texas Renegade Returns)


LOOK FOR MY NEW HARLEQUIN ONLINE READ coming in January to kick off my Moonlight Beach Bachelors series! TITLE TBA

HER FORBIDDEN COWBOY coming in February!





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21 thoughts on “Sometimes Only a Cowboy Will Do”

  1. We definitely do need more cowboys.

    I’m a Longmire fan and am heartbroken that A&E canceled it (though there is a rumor it’s been picked up by another network). It was A&E’s top rated show but the audience was too “old” for advertisers.

    Sad but true: Those young whippersnappers that advertisers love to court just don’t like westerns.

  2. I’m a Longmire fan, too. And I’m all for having more westerns.

    I watched Revolution a couple seasons because it had that throwback historical feel with no electricity and people having to depend on horsepower and steam power.

    Some of my other favorite TV westerns that didn’t make the list were The Young Riders and The Magnificent Seven (remake) – two western series from the 1980’s.

  3. Charlene, loved your list which include a lot of my favorites. Hell on Wheels is my current obsession. I LOVE that show. It’s gritty and raw and I think really shows what the old West was like. It took tough men like Bohannon. Gunsmoke was my favorite when westerns were the rage. Matt Dillion was a great character. Sure wish there were more westerns today.

  4. Hi Margaret,

    I think the younger generation just doesn’t get the romance of the old west. (I’m generalizing here, but it is true) And I doubt many of them love history the way we do. I eat it up and can’t get enough. Western heroes are gasp-worthy and sigh-sexy..and I know those shows are very costly to make.

  5. Hi Karen – never got into Longmire, but I had always heard great things about it. The Magnificent Seven was my all time favorite western movie for years. I must’ve seen it a dozen times. And that’s before we had DVR’s or any taping devices.

  6. Hi Linda – Well, Mr. Anson Mount (what a name!) is amazing, just the right amount of grit and gorgeous to make the perfect hero. For the longest time, I thought Hell on Wheels was about motorcycles, so I didn’t tune in, but then my friend told me I had to watch it. Great show!!

  7. Dr. Quinn was a fav of mine… always enjoy Little House… watched a lot of John Wayne movies with my dad… 🙂

  8. Currently it is Hell on Wheels – love that show. For old time likes: Rawhide, Bonanza, The Wild Wild West, and Maverick. I watched a lot of them when I was young because my dad loved them and his favorite was Gunsmoke.

  9. I always buy westerns. They are my favorite books and I don’t care if they are old time westerns or modern. My favorite westerns are:
    The Big Valley
    Dr. Quinn
    and any John Wayne westerns

  10. Charlene,

    I’m another Hell on Wheels fanatic. But one show I didn’t see on the list that I enjoyed as a child was How the West was Won with Matt Dillon and Bruce Boxleitner.

  11. Hi Kirsten – Oh I loved How the West Was Won…I fan/crushed over Bruce Boxleitner for years. And then he married Little House on the Prairie, Melissa Gilbert. They were married a long time, but broke up, I believe.

  12. Hi Charlene, I love this post! Right now I am obsessed with Hell on Wheels. Um, Cullen Bohannan/Anson Mount is my screensaver. Hubba hubba. My all-time TV fave is Dr. Quinn, mostly because I love strong women of the west. Next: Bonanza, The Big Valley, and LONGMIRE. I can’t believe they cancelled it!

    I think my most fave western movies are Open Range, with Robert Duvall and Kevin Costner and Tombstone with Sam Elliott and Kurt Russell.

    Great post today. Ps. I also am annoyed with country singers who don’t wear cowboy hats. Sheesh!

  13. Well, BONANZA, LITTLE HOUSE, and DR. QUINN were on my top 5 list. WAGON TRAIN is another one I am surprised didn’t make it. All the 1950’s shows were favorites and THE WILD, WILD WEST was fun and a favorite. Paladin, Bat Masterson, and YOUNG RIDERS were also shows we tried to never miss.

    Yes, OUTLANDER may not be a western, but it still has brave men and women, horses, wagons, bad guys, and beautiful country. Yes, April is too long to have to wait.

  14. Great post. I am a Longmire fan. I also liked many of the ones listed. I think Wild Wild West was one of my very favorites. I also liked High Chaparral and The Big Valley. Liked Quigley Down Under. I also liked The Virginian.

  15. I am surprised Bonanza is not on the list. One of my favs. My all time top fav movie is McClintock with my hero John Wayne.
    Rawhide and The Big Valley are also two of my fav TV shows, as is Dr. Quinn, Maverick and Gunsmoke.

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