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Alias Smith & Jones - Season One (1971)

Ben Murphy , Pete Duel  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (98 customer reviews)

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Alias Smith & Jones - Season One + Alias Smith And Jones: Seasons 2 & 3 + Big Valley - Season 1
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Product Details

  • Actors: Ben Murphy, Pete Duel
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Universal Studios
  • DVD Release Date: February 20, 2007
  • Run Time: 783 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (98 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000LPS2VS
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #66,976 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Alias Smith & Jones - Season One" on IMDb

Special Features

Disc 1:
  • Pilot: Optional Audio Commentary by Writer/Creator/Producer Glen A. Larson

  • Editorial Reviews

    Product Description

    Journey to the rough 'n' rowdy West and join the misadventures of two outlaws as every Season One episode of Alias Smith and Jones comes to DVD for the first time! Kid Curry (Ben Murphy) and Hannibal Heyes (Pete Duel) are two ex-bandits who just want to walk the straight and narrow. But before the governor will give them amnesty, they're going to have to live their lives as Thaddeus Jones and Joshua Smith, avoid the bounty hunters on their trail, and discover the criminals who are only too happy to blame crimes on their old personas! Created by Glen Larson (Magnum P.I., Knight Rider, Buck Rogers) and co-starring such legendary guest stars as Susan Saint James, it's the TV Western that shows why the West was so wild!

    This warm, comedic western appeared on televisions a year after Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid was a surprise blockbuster. Both lighthearted Westerns follow two outlaws who have won the hearts of the public. In TV bandit version, it's because "they never killed anyone" while being ever-so-charming as they steal from banks and trains. In the pilot episode (which aired as a TV movie in January 1971, followed two weeks later by the series), the premise is set: Hannibal Heyes (Pete Duel) and 'Kid' Curry (Ben Johnson) want to go straight when they discover the governor is offering amnesty, a historical fact. However, it's stipulated they need to go "straight" for a year before amnesty will be given. So they rename themselves Joshua Smith and Thaddeus Jones as they attempt to go straight, but lawmen--unknown of the secret deal--are on their heels. Usually the pair goes out of the way to stop a crime from other bandits. A good double-cross is usually thrown in too. Heyes/Smith is the brainier one with an eye for the ladies. Curry/Jones is more brawny (a relative term), possessing the proverbial "fastest gun in the west." Highlights of the 14 episodes includes "Wrong Train to Brimstone," as the two board a train of detectives looking for Heyes and Curry, and "A Fistful of Diamonds" where we don't know who is conning who. The revolving door of guest stars is pretty impressive. Susan St. James, Earl Holliman, and Forest Tucker appear in the pilot. Later shows find Burl Ives as a gambler, Susan Strasberg as a casino owner, Fernando Lamas as a mentor of Heyes', Keenan Wynn as a stationmaster who captures the bandits, plus Juliet Mills, Patrick Macnee, L.Q. Jones, Slim Pickens, Sam Jaffe, and J.D. Cannon, who appears in several episodes as a detective on the trail. Add those talents to the easygoing charm of the two stars, and even the thinnest story is enjoyable to watch.

    This was the first show Glen A. Larson (Magnum, P.I. , Knight Rider) created and produced. His copy of the Butch formula (and the some extent, the previous comedic TV western Maverick) worked well enough for the struggling ABC network to quickly order a second season (the show was especially a hit with the younger set). However, by the end of 1971, the tragic suicide of Duel made the show a dead end, despite the addition of Sally Field and instantly recasting Smith with Roger Davis (who supplied the show's opening narration up to that point). A flash in the pan (50 episodes) seen year later holds up well enough, and has been preserved to supply an excellent picture quality. --Doug Thomas

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    76 of 77 people found the following review helpful
    Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
    Finally this classic western is released to DVD! Universal has done a fine job the shows themselves look extremely good (with just a bit of dirt and grit during the opening montage for each episode--probably due to the original source elements). We get the entire first season of the series as well as the TV movie that essentially served as a pilot episode for the series. While the tone differed a bit from the pilot, the series is equally as good with top notch production values and acting.

    The story revolves around Hannibal Heyes (Pete Duel) and Kid Curry (Ben Murphy)a pair of robbers who never killed anyone as they broke the law (although interestingly, Roger Davis who went on to play Hannibal Heyes played a villian that WAS killed by Curry)during the regular season. They're given an option to go straight by the governor (they see a handbill offering amnesty to criminals who haven't committed any murders)--if they can stay clean for an entire year. It'll be their secret until the 12 months (probably in case it fails) are up but that also means the guys are fair game for bounty hunters who may discover their identity. Trouble follows them wherever they go though and they end up performing one good deed after another hoping that they don't get caught in the gun of someone's crosshairs since the original wanted poster still says "Dead or Alive".

    The first season set include the pilot movie plus the first 14 episodes of the show (the show was a mid-season replacement which is why it doesn't have a full season of 22-24 episodes). While clearly inspired by "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" the film achieves its own quirky tone by the first regular season episode. Duel and Murphy's charm and chemistry on camera is immediately evident.
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    27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Too good to be this "unknown" February 21, 2007
    I have all my "biggies" from the 70's. Columbo, Kung Fu, AITF, Rockford; I'm sure you guys know the long list. Anyway, I had never heard of this show much less "seen" it before. How can this be? This show is FANTASTIC!! I had some extra bucks laying around, plus I did like Pete Duel from Gidget even though I didn't care for the show; so I gambled. Well, the chemistry and writing are top notch, the story is interesting, and the humor is perfect, I couldn't be more pleased.

    Sadly, this isn't a full season of 22-24 eps, though 15 seems enough I suppose. The transfer quality is pretty good for a show this old, the sound is standard fare, but they really did a nice job with the boxart and ONE sided discs. Gary A. Larsons commentary is generally helpful (when he speaks) and I find it a bit funny he says this is "one of his favorite shows" he has produced, I had to read between the lines but when I saw he was also the creator of Night Rider, I quickly realized he meant this IS his favorite but he was too polite to say:) C'mon, Alias Smith and Jones... or drek from the 80's like Night Rider? Gah.

    As a side note; of course I am still generally shocked of Pete Duel's fate. I see his amazing smile, witness his relentless talent, and shake my head in disbelief.... how can it BE? R.I.P. Mr. Duel.
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    29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Yay! HooRay! Finally! December 18, 2006
    What we've been waiting for so long has come! Finding the pilot on VHS 7 years ago was great, and I was happy to see it again after so long.

    I spent so many years searching for this show to be broadcast somewhere, then nearly two years ago Encore Westerns began to run the series, and I thought that was the best there could be--I finally got to see all of the episodes (with the exception of the second season opener), many I hadn't seen for 30+ years! Now to have the first season out on commercially produced DVDs (with seasons 2 and 3 not far behind, I hope!) this is the very best! Please let there be outtakes, let there be interviews, let there be behind the scenes!

    Thank you Universal! You have made many, many people very happy!
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    19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Just As Good As I Remember February 23, 2007
    I was so excited to find out this series was finally coming out on DVD. I got my copy yesterday and it was even better than I remembered. It looked quite good on my 32" flat panel TV. I watched the pilot episode which I'm not sure I've seen before. This series doesn't disappoint and doesn't have a dated feel to it. Maybe because it already takes place in another time? The chemistry of Pete Duel and Ben Murphy is fabulous. The humor and the way it underplays itself holds up very nicely. I'm hoping this series will be a success so that the next two seasons will also be released. Season 2 is probably the best of the bunch as that's when Duel and Murphy really hit their stride. Most sadly, Pete Duel committed suicide during the second season and was immediately replaced by Roger Davis. Davis does an excellent job considering the incredibly tough situation he was put into. Though Davis and Murphy work very well together its still not the same. Enjoy this classic series. It was an original in its day and still holds up that way.
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    25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic show!!!! December 20, 2006
    By ASJ Fan
    This has to be my favorite TV show of all time. I'm so glad they are releasing it on DVD. Let's hope the producers also release the other seasons in the future. I'll buy them all.
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    28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Hard not to offer amnesty to these appealing bandits January 16, 2007
    It is a real treat seeing Alias Smith and Jones finally being offered in a DVD box set. Picking up where Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid left off, this pair of prime time bandits always had a light touch as they found ingenuous ways to skirt the law and other desperados alike. It is too bad Peter Duel met an untimely death, as the show had struck a chord with the viewing audience and seemed like it had a long life in store. Ben Murphy, Forrest Tucker, Susan St. James and James Drury (The Virginian) rounded out the cast.
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    Topic From this Discussion
    Season 2?
    I am anxious for Season 2, also. (A caution about buying those "complete series" selling for $70-$150: I stumbled across a couple of websites a few months ago where customers had posted their experiences with those companies. The short story is apparently all of those... Read More
    Nov 13, 2007 by Aggie Lady |  See all 3 posts
    What sort of extras would you like tos ee for Alias Smith and Jones...
    Yes, interviews would be good. Especially from Ben Murphy, because he was there throughout the whole show. I'd love to hear is memories of working with Pete Duel.

    If they had some old TV trailers of the show, or (this is a longshot) deleted scenes, that would be fabulous.
    Feb 23, 2007 by skunktrain |  See all 7 posts
    Now for Europe too, please!
    Why don't you get yourself a "multi-system" DVD player?

    They are not very expensive.
    Dec 14, 2007 by Dale L. Burrell |  See all 3 posts
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