The Roy Rogers Show (TV Series 1951–1957) Poster


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Does Not Deserve To Be Bashed!
Carycomic1 December 2007
This show was already in Saturday morning re-runs when I first watched it. And, I loved it!

The "good vs. evil" plots might seem corny, by today's standards. But, we have to remember that this was produced during comparatively simpler times. When morality was just as black-and-white as the film stock the studios used.

Furthermore, the hero and heroine practiced what they preached! Nor did they preach using four-letter words. Unlike, say, Dennis Franz on NYPD BLUES.

Last, but not least? This was not a "steampunk" Western.

The fictional city in which Roy and Dale made their home was contemporaneous with the shows' audience. It's just that the locals maintained a 19th-century ambiance for the tourist trade, similar to Virginia City, Nevada. So, the mixture of "old and new," especially modes of transportation, was most definitely _not_ anachronistic!

In short, I am unalterably convinced that this show should be praised, rather than condemned, for the beneficial values it tried to instill in its mostly young viewers. That some of us might not have grown up to live by those values is--to paraphrase Shakespeare--not the fault of this show's stars. But, of ourselves.
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Mustard and Custard
bkoganbing2 May 2008
I just picked a copy of a joint biography of Roy Rogers and Dale Evans and the story behind the television series was an interesting one.

Both were winding up their contracts at Republic Pictures where they didn't make much money from the studio itself. Herbert J. Yates ran a pinch penny operation to say the least. Their money came from Roy's shrewd business sense and merchandising of the Rogers/Evans name. But they decided to get into the new medium of television.

The problem they foresaw was Yates selling or leasing their old films for television showing while they were making new product. So Roy and Dale had to go to court to enjoin Yates from selling the films so as not to compete with the weekly half hour western show they were planning. The films eventually made it to television, but not until after the series went into syndication. By that time Republic Pictures was no more.

I certainly remember the show as a kid watching it. It was little more than an extension of the films. No doubt existed that Roy and Dale would rout the bad guys in the end.

Roy operated out of the Double R Bar Ranch and Dale had her own business, very advanced thinking especially for folks as conservative as these two were. Instead of a saloon she ran a small diner type establishment for travelers who were going by car or horse.

What I remember best was Pat Brady though. He was a funny guy who was a friend of Roy and Dale, but he was more of a hindrance at times than a help. Roy had the patience of Job with him, but Dale would really get exasperated at times.

Pat didn't ride a horse, he had a jeep which he named NellyBelle. The jeep I swear had its own personality. One thing you could always depend on, that in a crisis that jeep would always let you down. Pat had his own swear oath, a G rated one to be sure. I've never heard anyone else use the phrase 'mustard and custard' and it was usually directed at that cantankerous jeep NellyBelle.

Roy's show ran for about six seasons and by that time the western was becoming more of an adult enterprise for television as well as the big screen. Still I do have fond memories of it and I even use Happy Trails as my way of saying goodbye.
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must have been tough growing up in London, Canada
ratboy7a25 July 2007
One of the previous writers complains of anachronisms and mysteries in the Roy Rogers Show. well, they sure entertained us when we were younger. Heck, I was in my 40's when I realized that Pat Brady's Jeep, Nellybelle ran forever and never was seen pulling into a gas station. I never saw a gas station in the show. I guess that must be Hollywood. Our heroes wouldn't kill someone so they shot the gun out of their hands. Tough shot to make? Not in Hollywood.

It's amazing that anyone could have a problem with this show. Roy had a code for his little buckaroos. The world would be a heck of a different place if just half the population followed that code. Of course, a lot of people do follow it, just under a different name. Call it the Golden Rule, Koran, Torah, whatever. All of them, including Roy's code, gave the rules for treating your fellow man and the world that was provided by a Supreme Being.

Yes, sadly the museum in Victorville closed but I understand it has reopened in Branson. The previous writer should go to the Roy rogers website and read some of the mail. Read Roy and Dale's books. Their life is the epitome of the American dream. Nothing comes easy in life. You'll see that in their books and it was taught in their shows and movies. Yes the museum closed but most likely because we who grew up with Roy and Dale are getting into our last days. One of the best memories of my childhood was shaking Roy's hand at a rodeo in Madison Square Garden in NYC.

So who was your hero in London, Canada?
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"Happy Traaails to youuuu!"
semi-buff21 June 2003
Oh how I wish THIS would show up in reruns! This and "Lassie" (with Tommy Rettig) were my favorite shows as a kid, in an era of great kiddie shows. In my little-girl eyes, Dale really had the perfect life--she got the horse AND Roy! It didn't matter what the plots were; they were basically all the same anyway. But there was something about Roy and Dale that was very appealing, and Pat and Nellybelle were fun too. One nice thing about it was Dale was not a damsel in distress; she was Roy's partner, and although secondary, she did her part to help him get the bad guys. ["Annie Oakley" had a female lead without a male costar, except for her kid brother. I think these two shows helped contribute to the rise of femininism in the 60's.] Every kid knew "Happy Trails" by heart, and Roy and Dale sang it right to us at the end of every show. Wonderful memories!
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Local Cowboy Makes Good
jonesy74-13 October 2005
Not to be derogatory, but I always wondered why Roy Rogers was the King of the Cowboys and John Wayne wasn't. What WAS John Wayne, anyway? Oh yeah, The Duke. Oh well. I guess it was because Wayne couldn't sing with the Sons of the Pioneers, although Wayne did sing a little in "Hatari" and didn't have that bad of a voice... but I digress.

Who could resist Roy Rogers' charm? I mean, he was the nicest guy in the world. He even smiled while he was roundin' up the bad guys after they'd been bested.

Dale had the best post-menopausal vibrato I'd ever heard after she got a little older - but she was Roy's partner and could pull her gun on an ornery desperado as fast as any of the ranch hands.

Roy had Trigger (horse) and Bullet (dog), but, Pat Brady had Nellybell (a jeep). Pat Brady was played by Pat Brady, just as Roy Rogers played Roy Rogers and Dale Evans played Dale Evans. Were there any actors in this series who played anyone other than themselves? I mean, did Trigger and Bullet even have different names than their stage names? Pat was a great comedian - goofy face and lovable. A great sidekick for Roy.

And of course, Roy and Dale sang "Happy Trails" at the end of each show. That right there was worth the half hour watch.
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Pat Brady's Comic Relief
im-fmouie1 April 2018
Yes, Pat Brady's comic relief was pretty lame. But the fault lies in the director and the writers, not Mr. Brady. It was silliness obviously created for the show's audience: kids. Watching these shows today, I sometimes get frustrated over his character, which was certainly over the top silliness. But, as a kid, I was thoroughly amused and didn't see him through adult eyes, so it was effective as it was meant to be to the audience it was meant for.

As far as gas stations go, for Nellie Bell (Nelly Bell?) (Nellie Belle?) (NellieBell?) (can't seem to find the definitive spelling), it really never occurred to me as a kid. It was just accepted that, somehow, Pat's Jeep always had access to fuel. lol. Which, if I may digress a bit, is why adding so much realistic violence from the 60s, and later, on TV and movies was so damaging to children, I feel. The violence and actions of criminals on TV and in movies, since the 60s, makes some kids think that that's normal and, apparently, acceptable. The results are in today's news headlines.

The entertainment industry would be doing a great service to today's children if they'd produce shows and movies that are 'realistic' without underscoring, amplifying and promoting violence, and making criminals of all ages seemingly successful and heroic. While PBS provides great programming for very young kids, I can think of no regular network programs for preteens or teens that don't exhibit violent, criminal behavior in at least one character. We need more shows that present old-fashioned values that helped bring Americans together, not values that create divisiveness and glorify antiheroic behavior.
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A Family Western With A Real Family (Cast)
redryan6424 August 2014
WHEN WE HAD CBS with THE GENE AUTRY SHOW, the National Broadcasting Company answered with THE ROY ROGERS SHOW. It was as if the two friendly rivals were truly slugging it out; although not going toe to toe for their ratings, they still had to establish who was truly number one TV Cowboy.

WHEREAS THE "B" MOVIE fans were very familiar with this sort of series Western from studios like Republic*, Coluimbia, Monogram and Producers Releasing Corporation, no real beach head had been established on the newly created realm of Television.

WELL THAT SURE didn't last very long as Flying A Productions (GENE AUTRY, ANNIE OAKLEY,RANGE RIDER) and Bar Double R produced the ROY ROGERS SHOW. Others, many others followed.

AS FAR AS the Rogers production, there was far more continuity with more regular cast members. Roy and Dale Evans Mrs. Rogers in real life) always managed to get involved with whatever local hugs had planned for 'Mineral City' and vicinity. They were great help to somewhat laid-back and inept middle aged Sheriff, played by Harry Harvey. Then there was "Roy's comical sidekick", Pat Brady, thrown in for,. that's right, comic relief.

THE ONE THIG that always was a puzzlement to us as kids was that whereas Roy rode his palomino horse, Trigger and Miss Dale rode her mare, Buttermilk; why did Pat Brady drive a jeep with the name of "Nellie-belle?" After all, how could one have a Jeep, an automobile, in the Old West? THE ANSWER OF course is that THE ROY ROGERS SHOW, as were so many of the old "B" Western Sderies Poctures, was set in the modern, then contemporary times of the 1950s.

WE ALSO WOULD like to make mention of one other regular cast member. That would be Bullet, Roy's faithful German Shepard puppy dog.

ROY KNEW THAT he needed all the help ion his 'rivalry' with Gene. And, as any schoolboy knows, people just love dogs.

NOTE: * Both men had worked at Republic and Roy had been a member of the Western Musical group, THE SONS OF THE PIONEERS when he arrived there. When Gene went to the Service in World War II, it was the former Leonard Sly ()Roy's birth name) who replaced him. Upon his return, Gene established his own company, FLYING A PRODUCTIONS and struck a deal for release with Columbia.
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old or new western
raceral-7720129 March 2017
Yeah, when I watched this as a kid in the 50s I was a little confused about the time period this was set in. i know they didn't have cars or jeeps in the 1880s. Now that the show is in reruns in can see that is is set in the 40s or early 50s. There is electricity and radios and I've even spotted other cars. And horses are still ridden on the roads. It was a couple of years ago I was in Gilbert AZ. at a strip mall and a rider pulled up on a horse and "parked" it into a parking stall. Funny as heck.
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Roy's name
nam_wolfhound4 March 2009
You say that Roy Rogers went as Roy Rogers just like Dale Evans. Roy's real name was Leonard Franklin Slye. Roy Rogers is just a roll he played. I know it's not in the credits as him being Leonard, but neither does John Wayne list himself as Marion Robert Morrison in the credits of his shows. As far as "King of the Cowboys", what about Daniel Boone being "King of the Wild Frontier"? Check out the "Legendary Cowboy Kings DVD" that has a whole passel of singers listed as "Kings". What I'm saying is that John Wayne can be a "King of the Cowboys" as well as all of the other giants we all know and love. They are all great in my book. Heroes every one. I've just got ten DVDs that I picked up from of the Roy Rogers Show. I enjoy them all just like I do Gene Autry, another great "King" in my book. Don't forget Dale Evans, "Queen of the West". We'll see them all in Hillbilly Heaven. Fred Salter
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Great Role Model In the 50s
im-fmouie31 March 2018
Despite what one reviewer said, the Roy Rogers TV show was an excellent show for us kids in the 50s. If that reviewer did any research he would see that people in Texas, Oklahoma, Nevada, California, etc did ride horses for ranch work and in their daily lives, with cars, including Jeeps being driven in the same era.

As for shooting guns out of the hands of outlaws instead of killing them, that was simply role modelling for kids. The Lone Ranger did it; so did Roy Rogers. It was about values. Disarming an outlaw was more important than killing him. It tried to teach children that the value of a life was important. Respect and dignity were valued. Yes, these were all fantasy shows with unrealistic concepts and ideals, but so are the Star Wars movies.

The violence displayed in today's society is more associated with the TV shows and movies shown decades after the 50s. Perhaps, if those 50s values had continued on into the 60s and 70s, instead of the violent 'reality' displayed on TV and in the movies that became the standard, America and the world might be a better, safer place today. I say, "shame" on the entertainment industry for promoting the violence to children on TV, in the movies, and in the music that has become today's norm.
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Probably wouldn't play today but . . .
pensman6 May 2014
Warning: Spoilers
The Roy Rogers show along with other 50's Westerns is currently running on COZI TV and I am chuckling at some of my childhood heroes. Don't know if Roy could get a passel of little Buckaroos to engage today as kids now seem to be churned into mini teenagers by age seven. What struck me were the not infrequent references to the Bible or God in the show. Indeed one episode was about a search for treasure and the treasure turned out to be the Bible itself. The show had a pretty clear cut demarcation between good and bad with good clearly winning; but bad characters could find redemption. One thing for sure, we received clear messages from Roy as to what behaviors were expected and which should be eschewed. Personally, I don't think the 50's were the simple times people like to claim they were. Children still had to learn how to grow up navigating a world of Korea, McCarthyism, and Atomic bombs. Maybe it wasn't so bad getting "raised" in part by Roy, Cisco, Hopalong, and the Lone Ranger.
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anachronism central
widescreenguy17 December 2006
why were there motor vehicles zooming about all the time and the hero still galloped around on a horse???? I remember an old family story about a relative the first time he got in a car. didn't know what the brake pedal was.

whoa !!! whoa !!! he bellowed from being on a horse before that. maybe Mr rogers was afraid he would embarrass himself like that.

and the inane stuff about 'shooting the gun out of the bad guy's hand'. great way to stop a bullet there yourself mister good-two-shoes guy, the cardinal rule of gun play is to aim for the large part of the body, the chest area, you simply cant hit a small target like the precise spot of the opponent's gun to oh so cleverly knock it out of his hand. this was one of numerous examples of Hollywood goofiness and stereotyping and clichés engulfing this series.

this had to be the most simplistic goofy far fetched and implausible series on TV the entire time it aired.

being on cable reruns, I only got to see it if my privileged friend deigned to have me over on Saturday. I was so starved for entertainment I would take it in with great puzzlement at why the cars and horses juxtapositioned??? we still have horses but they are just for show nowadays unless you're a Mennonite.

ye gads I hope we don't start seeing ads for DVD collections and that wretched themes song. clop clop clop-pity clop. AAAAGGHHHHH !!!! I notice the roy rogers museum closed a ways back for lack of visitors. not surprising. totally irrelevant and totally moot today.
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That Infernal Jeep
jim_earp14 May 2015
When I was eight, Roy Rogers was awesome and I couldn't wait to see Brady's Jeep NellyBelle appear on screen. It didn't occur to me until I was a bit older just how stupid it was to have such an anachronism turn up in a western set at the early part of the 20th century. The most obvious question raised by this show is that if a cowboy could own a Jeep that never needed gas, why didn't any of the bandits ever carry M1911 .45 Caliber automatics and why didn't the bank robbers ever show up with M1 Carbines or BARs? Today, watching the show just grates on my nerves. Frankly, I wince less watching the racist posturing of earlier The Lone Ranger shows that I do the goody-two-shoes absurdity that was the world of Roy Rogers. I'm just sayin...
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