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The Virginian: Fifth Season Complete

4.7 out of 5 stars 61 customer reviews

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(Oct 25, 2011)
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Editorial Reviews

Owen Wister's 1902 western novel The Virginian was one of the first great novels of the American West. Set in the semi-mythical town of Medicine Bow, Wyoming in the 1890's, it chronicled the lives and relationships of the people who came west and settled the wild land. The Virginianwas the first 90 minute television western, airing in prime time on NBC from 1962-1971.

While James Drury and Doug McClure continued in their roles as The Virginian and Trampas, Season Five saw many changes in Medicine Bow. The great Charles Bickford joined the cast as the proprietor of the Shiloh Ranch, along with Sara Lane, Don Quine and Clu Gulager, breathing fresh life into the show recapturing its top ratings.

The impressinve list of talented guest stars in Season Five include Angie Dickinson and Warren Oates (Ride to Delphi), Susan Strasberg (The Captive), and Dan Duryea (The Challenge), Myrna Loy (Lady of the House), Pernell Roberts (The Long Way Home), Andy Devine (Yesterday's Timepiece), and many more. Over 36 hours - Color.

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: James Drury, Doug McClure, Charles Bickford, Sara Lane, Don Quine
  • Directors: n, a
  • Format: Box set, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 10
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Shout! Factory / Timeless Media
  • DVD Release Date: October 25, 2011
  • Run Time: 2175 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005LVIP1O
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #119,517 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Virginian: Fifth Season Complete" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Watching the 5th season takes some getting used to. Major cast changes alter the comfort zone that wore like a nice warm coat in previous years. The biggest change ( and not a good one ) is the departure of Lee J Cobb as Shiloh Ranch owner Judge Henry Garth. Cobb (who hated the gig) didn't even make it all the way through Season 4 having bailed out about two thirds of the way thru the season. His immediate replacement "Morgan Starr" played by John Dehner was a disaster. His over-the-top gruffness and lack of chemistry with fellow cast led to his abrupt departure at the end of Season 4. (no loss, he) Also gone are Randy Boone's "Randy" (right when we were beginning to know and like him) and Garth's niece "Jennifer" played by Diane Roker. Another big change: the sudden and unexplained departure of Sheriff Ryker (Clu Gulager) and the strange reappearance of Ross Elliot's Sheriff Abbott to the big chair. (Gulager would return to the show a year later)

As Season 5 gets underway we are introduced to 3 new major players, none of which measure up to the previous standard. 76 year old Charles Bickford, who looks way too old for the part, takes over as the new owner of the Shiloh. His rather stoic and stilted performance is an acquired taste. His Grandson and Granddaughter are played by Don Quine and Sara Lane. They're okay but not exceptional.

The loss of the aforementioned along with the previous departure of well liked Steve (Gary Clarke) and Betsy (Roberta Shore) make the new season a little less appealing. Only James Drury and Doug McClure remain from the glory days. Oh and bit player Beldon (LQ Jones) if you want to include him.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is my all-time favourite show and my favourite Western.I have quite a few favourite westerns but if I could only have one series to keep this would be it.I don't really know why.Certainly nostalgia plays a part.I was just a child when this was on TV.But even then it seemed to me that this show was something special.It seemed to be more like a movie than a series.It did run for 74 minutes without commercials and it had a stirring musical score by Percy Faith.Maybe it was the actor's.I have seen both movie versions of "The Virginian" with Gary Cooper and Joel McCrea,both great actors.But it will always be James Drury who was,is and will always be the Virginian.Just as Doug McClure will always be Trampas.As a kid,Trampas was my favourite character on the show.The first four seasons Lee J Cobb played the owner of the Shiloh Ranch with his adopted daughter Betsy played by Roberta Shore.Mr Cobb was an actor's actor.Highly respected and watchable in everything he did.It's a shame that he hated the show and couldn't wait for his contract to be up.This, the fifth season, would see a new owner played by Charles Bickford join the show with his two grandchildren.Unfortunately he would pass away half way through the sixth season and would be replaced by John McIntire playing his brother and then by Stewart Granger playing the English owner in the final season when the show would be re-titled "The Men from Shiloh".The show had great production values right throughout it's nine year run and is the third longest running western of all time.Thanks to Timeless Media Group for releasing this series on DVD.Now I can relive all these adventures I saw as a child and relish in it.Also for including interviews with some of the cast in previous DVD releases.Read more ›
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Here are capsule impressions of selected episodes from season five of "The Virginian."

RIDE TO DELPHI -- Guest stars, Angie Dickenson, Warren Oates, Harold J. Stone, Ron Russell.
While tracking stolen cattle, The Virginian encounters an old friend desperate to conceal her saloon girl past. Middling yarn doesn't inspire Drury or rest of stellar cast except for pioneering black actor Bernie Hamilton, who's rock-solid as a proudly self-sufficient homesteader. Hamilton's presence signified the belated beginning of some racial diversity in the series' casting.

THE CAPTIVE -- Guest star, Susan Strasberg.
John Grainger shelters a white girl raised by Indians while her birth parents are sought. Director Don Weis taps the magical sensitivity of former Broadway Anne Frank Strasberg in absorbing drama. Her defiance at being forced to live under a white man's roof sparks a stormy confrontation with Charles Bickford over dining rooom etiquette. In his early episodes as the new owner of Shiloh, Bickford emerged as a stern but benevolent, kingly figure that viewers could easily warm to.

AN ECHO OF THUNDER -- Guest stars, Linden Chiles, John Anderson, Jason Evers.
Trampas is dissatisfied with a nervous sheriff's explanation of a friend's death and seeks his own answers. McClure rides high in traditional saga, put over with gusto by director Abner Biberman, that has the nostalgic tingle of a Randolph Scott oater from the fifties. Other rewards include Anderson's leathery magnitism, Franz Waxman's stirring score and McClure's agile maneuvering through a harrowing climactic gunbattle.

DEADEYE DICK -- Dreamy adolescent with a dime-novel sensibility idolizes The Virginian.
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