DVD Tuesday: Bonanza; The Dukes; Cheyenne

Every Tuesday I take a look at obscure and/or classic television programs, specials, miniseries or made-for-TV movies being released on DVD. For the record I consider anything broadcast prior to 1980 to be classic or else there wouldn’t be much to discuss. The releases referred to in these posts are encoded for Region 1 use in the United States and Canada.

Out today from Paramount Home Video is Bonanza: The Official Second Season, Volume One, with the first 18 episodes from the 1960-1961 season. The set also boasts a variety of bonus features, including audio commentaries by Julie Adams, Ben Cooper, David Macklin and Stella Stevens, archival footage with David Dortort, several photo galleries, on air promos and more. Paramount is also releasing Vega$: Season Two, Volume One, with the first 11 episodes from the 1979-1980 season.

The Warner Archive has several manufacture on demand sets available today. The second season of Cheyenne has been split into two sets, both of which include five discs and cost $34.95. Or you can purchase both sets together for $69.90, discounted to $59.95 at the moment. Here are links to all three sets:

Also available from Warner Archive today is The Dukes of Hazzard spin-off The Dukes – The Complete Series. The animated series ran on CBS for 20 episodes over the course of two brief seasons in 1983. Although it falls outside my pre-1979 cut-off, I’m mentioning it anyway. Apparently all of the sets have been autographed by James Best, who played Sheriff Rosco P. Coltrane on The Dukes of Hazzard and voiced the character on The Dukes.

Finally, from Video Service Corp. comes Trek Stars Go West, a two-disc set containing seven episodes and one feature film, all featuring cast members from Star Trek. You get episodes of Tate, Bonanza, Outlaws, The Lone Ranger and Last of the Mohicans with Leonard Nimoy, William Shatner, Deforest Kelley and James Doohan, plus Robert Redford, Dan Blocker, Clayton Moore, Cloris Leachman and Lon Chaney, Jr. Also included is the 1968 film White Comanche with William Shatner.

1 Comment

  • Barry I. Grauman says:

    “THE DUKES” was yet another example of how desparate CBS was in trying to keep the faltering “supremacy” of their Saturday morning schedule going in early 1983, in the face of rising competition from NBC and ABC- and to remind kids about one of their few prime-time hits [even though John Schneider and Tom Wopat had abruptly left the live-action show at the start of the 1982-’83 season due to money issues, and were temporariily replaced by two “lookalikes” whose names I’ve conveniently forgotten]. To say that the Saturday morning version was more “cartoonish” than the live-action version [Hanna-Barbera animated ‘THE DUKES” for Warner Bros.] is an understatement…and just to make sure kids tuned into the first episode that January, the network scheduled a repeat of one of their Bugs Bunny prime-time specials (I believe it was “The Bugs Bunny Mystery Special”) just before the premiere.

    Did “THE DUKES” give CBS an advantage on Saturday mornings? No- it did not generate the interest or ratings of the original [and Wopat and Schneider quickly reappeared (they got most of what they wanted from CBS and Warners) just before the ’82-’83 season ended, when it became apparent their presence was desparately needed to stave off cancellation of the parent show, with their “stand-ins” quietly disappearing as well]…that’s why it was cancelled after the summer of 1984. “THE DUKES OF HAZZARD” disappeared the season after.

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