Experiment at New Life was a fairly decent episode of Men from Shiloh, which is either the last season of The Virginian or the one and only year of a spin-off, depending upon how you look at it. The problem for me is that just about all of the shows focus on just a single cast member, which means that usually that cast member is not actually at the Shiloh Ranch. That’s the case here as the 90 minutes focuses on James Drury and his Virginian character.
Quite honestly, even Drury isn’t as central as one would have thought. Instead, there’s a heavy load given to guest star Vera Miles. Now Miles is up for the challenge. She’s a darn good actress, and she plays the role of widow and town leader very well.
Her character has to go through a bit of a transformation as she realizes that her husband’s dream town of New Life is drifting out of her control and leading into an untoward path.
Ultimately, the Virginian has to save the day, rescuing Miles and her daughter, played by Sue Lyon.
Miles and guest star Michael McGreevey make the show worthwhile for me. It’s a solid cast, though, with Ralph Meeker, Lyle Bettger, and Chris Robinson all along for the ride.