Morgan Starr

Cozi TV have begun broadcasting the Morgan Starr episodes. Since my original post back in 2013 I can approach Starr with a new perspective. The introductory episode is arguably one of the better episodes of an uneven season. At first glace Starr’s stern manner is a stark contrast to Judge Garth, but as the episode progresses his relationship with Jennifer softens and we see a lighter side to his character. It is still hard to accept Judge Garth would have recommended a surly authoritarian to succeed him at Shiloh. And just as difficult to accept that The Virginian turned down the job as boss of Shiloh ranch given the fact he admits to Starr that his allegiance to Judge Garth is paramount. The introduction to Starr by Garth in person before he assumed his Governor position would have eased the transition for viewers. Instead we got a sudden departure without any goodbye. Apparently Lee J. Cobb didn’t want to stay around longer than he had to.

With all its faults “Morgan Starr” remains an interesting episode. A pity Trampas was absent for such a key episode.

The Virginian Weblog

Morgan-Starr3INSP have begun broadcasting the Morgan Starr episodes. Arguably the least popular addition to the Shiloh “family” – Morgan Starr succeeded Judge Garth as the boss at  Shiloh Ranch for a brief period during Season 4. The dark tone of Starr’s episodes was in stark contrast to Judge Garth. Starr’s stern, abrasive manner and military type persona was ill fitting for a show that relied on a friendly extended family at Shiloh Ranch.

Even the Virginian’s character was compromised and at times he took orders from Starr with an eagerness that bordered on servitude as in ‘Harvest of Strangers’ (4:22). It’s hard to accept Judge Garth would have recommended a surly authoritarian to succeed him at Shiloh. It is this basic lack of character continuity that adds to the confusion for the viewer in late Season 4.  With the departure of Betsy and Judge Garth the introduction of Morgan Starr…

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The Virginian: The Men From Shiloh on INSP

isStarting September 30 at 2 P.M EST the cable station INSP will start broadcasting “The Virginian: The Men From Shiloh.” This was the final, revamped season of “The Virginian.” Sadly for fans of the first eight seasons INSP will no longer be broadcasting “The Virginian.” The contract has run out. “The Men From Shiloh” was something of a departure, with Trampas and the Virginian no longer wearing their regular costumes and most of the stories taking place away from Shiloh Ranch. The only episode featuring Trampas and the Virginian together at Shiloh Ranch was the first episode of the season.

The Virginian-Men From Shiloh INSP

Shiloh Ranch Owners in “The Song of Bernadette” (1943)

thSUZ0EMYC“The Virginian” Shiloh Ranch owners Lee J. Cobb and Charles Bickford both starred with Jennifer Jones in “The Song of Bernadette” (1943). Following news of Bickford’s death in 1967 Jennifer Jones attempted suicide. 14015140_oriHe was her mentor and his death added to her already fragile mental state at the time. Full details in my biography of Jennifer Jones.Green_978-0-7864-6041-0[1]

Shiloh Ranch = Universal City Walk

Sad to say the site of Shiloh Ranch is now occupied by the Universal City Walk area overlooking the Hollywood freeway. Shiloh Ranch was still in use by Universal Studio productions up until the mid 1970s but was levelled to make way for the expansion of the Universal Studios tour area.

 It’s a great pity that no sign exists where the iconic Shiloh house and ranch once stood but it appears the people in charge today have short memories and little appreciation of the past.