Friday, June 15, 2012

BEST OF THE WEST Western comedy

I really enjoyed this sitcom for the short time it was on, it was quite amusing, but the series never took off. Best of the West aired on ABC for the 1981-1982 season. The network didn’t seem to know what to do with the show, their changed the hour and air date several times.

The show was a comic Western set after the Civil War. Sam Best, his new wife and young son go out west to start a new life after he gets out of the service. While fighting in the South he found time to marry a young Southern Belle. They met when he was burning down her family’s plantation.


Joel Higgins as Marshal Sam Best

Carlene Watkins as Elvira Best

Meeno Peluce as Daniel Best

Leonard Frey as parker Tillman

Tom Ewell as Doc Jerome Kullens

Valri Bromfield as Laney Gibbs

Tracey Walter as Frog

Macon McCalman as Mayor Fletcher

Sam Best, his wife Elvira and 10 year old Daniel leave Philadelphia to make a new life in the Western territories. Elvira is taken aback by the primitive conditions in the West, she keeps sweeping the floor and complaining that it is still dirty.

Elvira “I just can’t seem to get the dirt off this floor.”

Sam “It’s a dirt floor.

Daniel is sarcastic and rude about having to leave the big city. The best character on the show was Parker Tillman. He owns the Square Deal Saloon and has his hand in most of the local business. He is a complete villain and doesn’t do anything unless he can make a profit. When there was a flood, he would not give people shovels, they had to rent them for a high price. Tillman has a sidekick called Frog, who was dumb as a bag of rocks but generally good hearted.

Sam became the local marshall when he accidentally drove off the Calico Kid, an outlaw that had been terrorizing the town. Also in the town was Doc Kullens, the drunk local physician. The show was pretty entertaining. Sam was the straight man to the town eccentrics. Tillman was my favorite character but I also liked Frog and Laney Gibbs, who was an eccentric mountain woman who came to town and caused havoc.


When this show was on it drove me crazy where I had seen Parker Tillman before and I finally figured it out. In the movie, Fiddler on the Roof, Leonard Frey played the poor tailor that was in love with the eldest daughter.

Meeno Peluce was also the star of a short-lived series called Voyagers! about time travel. I liked that show also, but it was quickly cancelled.

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