The Slowest Gun in the West (May 7, 1960)

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The Slowest Gun in the West
 

Released on May 7, 1960: A town full of gunfighters convinces the biggest coward in the West to kill their slow-draw sheriff.

Produced by Nat Hiken

Directed by Herschel Daugherty

The Actors: Phil Silvers (Fletcher Bissell III, The Silver Dollar Kid), Jack Benny (Chicken Finsterwald), Ted de Corsia (Black Bart), Jack Elam (Ike Dalton), Karl Lukas (Jake Dalton), Robert J. Wilke (Billy the Kid Blake), Lee Van Cleef (Sam Bass), George Keymas (Jud McCory), John Dierkes (Wild Bill Monks), Mauritz Hugo (Doc Henley), Edward Brophy (bartender), William Fawcett (Skunk Sloan), Jean Willes (Kathy McQueen), Parley Baer (Walt Collingswood), Jack Albertson (Colonel Carl Dexter, mayor), Tom Fadden (Jedd Slocum), Marion Ross (Elsie May Slocum), Kathie Browne (Lulu Belle Slocum), Bella Bruck (Indian woman), Byron Foulger (the clerk), Hallene Hill (Mrs. Hotchkiss), Bill Catching (a horseman), Don C. Harvey (a sheriff), Dennis Moore (a man), George Chandler (Simpson the story teller), Alan Dexter (the husband on vacation), Jeanne Bates (the wife on vacation), Billy Booth (the son on vacation), Gina Gillespie (the daughter on vacation), Bruce Cabot (Nick Nolan), Fox O'Callahan (barfly), Art Felix (barfly), Tex Holden (barfly), Pierce Lyden (car mechanic), Chick Sheridan (barfly)

 
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Voice of Lion and Heart of Mouse

Many of the great funny men and women of the 1960's are not available for sharing on a site like this because by that time television was growing huge and the appetite for content was great . . . and re-runs were discovered. Until the time of late night television hours that could be filled with old movies and television shows, most of the movies and early televisions shows were considered disposable . . . After a show was broadcast to the nation it was a 'been there, done that' item and time to move on to something new and different . . . Who would ever want to watch an old show when there were new shows and movies to watch. Strangely, no one considered the comfort value and enjoyment that could be had by watching a movie or show from days gone by that we might have seen in our youth . . . No one imagined that people yet unborn would find any entertainment value in the stories that amused and entertained their parents and grandparents . . . As a result, there is an abundance of motion pictures from the 1930's, 1940's and 1950's that were never copyrighted, or renewed in the 28th year as required by the then-current laws. By 1960 television was beginning to see the value in copyrighting and protecting movies and television shows, but some still slipped through the cracks, like this made-for-television comedy featuring two actors that are rarely seen in public domain productions. I remember as a youngster watching the near-sighted Phil Silvers on a television situation comedy, and the legendary funny man Jack Benny gave my father in particular many hours of laughter and joy on the little box holding the television tube in the corner of the room. Most of those shows are protected for 95 years, but this little gem was produced to fill an empty spot in the television lineup and was never registered with the copyright office or renewed in the 28th year as required for pre-1963 U.S. films. It features several old-time actors from the cowboy movies of earlier years, along with funny men Phil Silvers as Fletcher Bissell III, the slowest gun in the West, who is challenged in the closing scene to a gunfight at noon by Chicken Finsterwald, played by Jack Benny. I do not remember watching this movie on television in 1960, and do not know if my father watched it, but I know that if he did watch it he would have laughed out loud many times during the adventure, much as I did as I watched it today for the first time. Pop a big bowl of white kernel popcorn with plenty of warm melted butter drizzled over it and enjoy the show.

The gunfight between Jack Benny and Phil Silvers
The gunfight between Jack Benny and Phil Silvers
Alan Dexter and George Chandler
Alan Dexter and George Chandler
Bella Bruck
Bella Bruck
Bruce Cabot
Bruce Cabot
Bruce Cabot and Jean Willes
Bruce Cabot and Jean Willes
Bruce Cabot challenges Phil Silvers
Bruce Cabot challenges Phil Silvers
Bruce Cabot
Bruce Cabot
Byron Foulger talks to Jack Benny
Byron Foulger talks to Jack Benny
George Chandler
George Chandler
George Keymas, Ted de Corsia, Jack Benny and John Dierkes
George Keymas, Ted de Corsia, Jack Benny and John Dierkes
George Keymas
George Keymas
Gina Gillespie, Jeanne Bates and Alan Dexter
Gina Gillespie, Jeanne Bates and Alan Dexter
Jack Benny and Ted de Corsia
Jack Benny and Ted de Corsia
Jack Benny as Chicken Finsterwald
Jack Benny as Chicken Finsterwald
Jack Benny
Jack Benny
Jack Elam faces Phil Silvers
Jack Elam faces Phil Silvers
Jack Elam
Jack Elam
John Dierkes
John Dierkes
Karl Lukas
Karl Lukas
Lee Van Cleef
Lee Van Cleef
Marion Ross and Phil Silvers
Marion Ross and Phil Silvers
Marion Ross and Phil Silvers
Marion Ross and Phil Silvers
Mauritz Hugo
Mauritz Hugo
Parley Baer, Jack Albertson and Robert J. Wilke
Parley Baer, Jack Albertson and Robert J. Wilke
Parley Baer and Jack Albertson
Parley Baer and Jack Albertson
Parley Baer
Parley Baer
Phil Silvers
Phil Silvers
Phil Silvers and Bella Bruck
Phil Silvers and Bella Bruck
Phil Silvers and Edward Brophy
Phil Silvers and Edward Brophy
Phil Silvers, Hallene Hill and Bruce Cabot
Phil Silvers, Hallene Hill and Bruce Cabot
Phil Silvers and Jack Benny
Phil Silvers and Jack Benny
Phil Silvers and Jean Willes
Phil Silvers and Jean Willes
Phil Silvers and Kathie Browne
Phil Silvers and Kathie Browne
Phil Silvers, Ted de Corsia and Jack Benny
Phil Silvers, Ted de Corsia and Jack Benny
Phil Silvers
Phil Silvers
Robert J. Wilke, Marion Ross and Phil Silvers
Robert J. Wilke, Marion Ross and Phil Silvers
Robert J. Wilke and Marion Ross
Robert J. Wilke and Marion Ross
Robert J. WIlke and Ted de Corsia
Robert J. WIlke and Ted de Corsia
Robert J. Wilke
Robert J. Wilke
Ted de Corsia, John Dierkes and Bruce Cabot
Ted de Corsia, John Dierkes and Bruce Cabot
Ted de Corsia
Ted de Corsia