11 March 2014

Johnny Ringo in "Showdown in Sonora"

Johnny Ringo was  an American Western television series starring Don Durant that aired on CBS from October 1, 1959, until June 30, 1960. It was  loosely based on the life of the notorious gunfighter and outlaw Johnny Ringo, also known as John Peters Ringo or John B. Ringgold, who tangled with Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday, and Buckskin Franklin Leslie.
Mark Goddard as Cully, Don Durant as Johnny Ringo and Karen Sharpe as Laura Thomas 

The program was an early creation of Aaron Spelling for Four Star Television. Spelling created Johnny Ringo at the specific request of Dick Powell as a role for Durant. It was filmed at CBS Studio Center. The pilot episode was shot as part of Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theater, titled "Man Alone". A gimmick gun introduced in the second pilot was a custom-built revolver called the LeMat, based on its historically authentic counterpart. The Le Mat featured an auxiliary shotgun barrel under its primary barrel. Many episodes found Ringo getting into scrapes where that final round in the shotgun barrel was the deciding factor. Aesthetically, Ringo's LeMat most resembles the historical percussion model LeMat but features a top break cartridge-fed design.

Dell issued a comic book, and here is one of three stories from  Four Color #1142 (November 1960-January 1961). Art by Dan Spiegle.

For syndicated reruns, the show was combined with three other Western series from the same company, Black Saddle starring Peter Breck, Law of the Plainsman starring Michael Ansara, and Sam Peckinpah's critically acclaimed creation, The Westerner starring Brian Keith, under the umbrella title The Westerners, with additional hosting segments featuring Keenan Wynn.

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