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Cimarron Strip

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8/10 TV

Created by  Christopher Knopf
Theme music composer  Maurice Jarre
Original language(s)  English
Network  CBS
7.5/10 IMDb

Genre  Western
Starring  Stuart Whitman
Country of origin  United States
Final episode date  7 March 1968
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Executive producers  Stuart Whitman, Bernard McEveety, Philip Leacock, Douglas Benton
Cast  Stuart Whitman, Randy Boone, Jill Townsend, Percy Herbert

Cimarron Strip is a lavish American Western television series starring Stuart Whitman as Marshal Jim Crown. The series was produced by the creators of Gunsmoke and aired on CBS from September 1967 to March 1968. Reruns of the original show were aired in the summer of 1971. Cimarron Strip is one of only three 90-minute weekly Western series that aired during the 1960s (the others are The Virginian and, for one season, Wagon Train), and the only 90-minute series of any kind to be centered primarily around one lead character in every episode. The series theme and pilot incidental music was written by Maurice Jarre, who also scored Lawrence of Arabia and Doctor Zhivago.

Contents

The series is set in the late 1880s in the Cimarron Territory, which would become the Oklahoma Panhandle in 1890. For complex historical reasons, this rugged strip of land existed as a virtually ungoverned U.S. territory for several decades. It was sometimes called No Man's Land, with a reputation for lawlessness and vigilante activity. On the show, Marshal Jim Crown is trying to bring order to the region before its political status is finally resolved.

cimarron strip us tv series 1967 68 intro lead in


Plot outline

The Cherokee Outlet across the Cimarron River was the last free homestead land in America. It was leased and controlled by cattlemen, and the newly arriving farmers were expecting authorities in Washington to send news that they would be given rights to the land, for which they had been campaigning. U.S. Marshal Jim Crown (Stuart Whitman), who led a rather wild life and had cleaned up Abilene, was assigned to the town of Cimarron. He arrives to find that the sheriff has resigned, leaving Crown on his own to settle the increasing unrest caused by the news he brings, that the cattlemen's leases have been revoked and a final decision on the land is postponed indefinitely. With no sheriff and no support from Army troops, Crown is on his own to keep law and order in this borderland between the Kansas Territory and Indian Territory.

Dulcey Coopersmith (Jill Townsend), born in England in 1869, arrives in Cimarron City on the same train as Marshal Crown, two months after her mother's death in Providence. Dulcey worked as an upstairs maid and traveled to Cimarron to be with her father she had not seen since the age of five, only to discover he had been killed by a beer wagon. Her father's partner was MacGregor (Percy Herbert), a Scotsman, who had let the Wayfarer's Inn fall into disrepair. He was a retired Colonel in Her Majesty's (Queen Victoria) forces. Another friend of Dulcey's father was Francis Wilde (Randy Boone), born in St. Louis and trying to make his way in the world as a reporter and photographer.

Regular cast

  • Stuart Whitman as Marshal Jim Crown
  • Jill Townsend as Dulcey Coopersmith
  • Percy Herbert as MacGregor
  • Randy Boone as Francis Wilde
  • Recurring characters

  • Jack Braddock as Fabrizio the bartender of the Wayfarers Inn (7 episodes)
  • Andrew Duggan as Maj. Ben Covington of the nearest Army fort (3 episodes)
  • Warren Oates as Mobeetie, a cowboy (2 episodes)
  • Karl Swenson as Doctor Kihlgren (6 episodes)
  • Robert J. Wilke as Hardy Miller (2 episodes)
  • Several actors appeared in more than one episode playing a different character each time. For example Al Wyatt Sr. played five different episodic characters, and those who played three different characters in three separate episodes include Gregg Palmer and Morgan Woodward. It was not unusual for actors to be recast in westerns at that time however.

    DVD release

    On May 27, 2014, Entertainment One released the complete series on DVD in Region 1 for the very first time.

    References

    Cimarron Strip Wikipedia


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