Schlitz Playhouse: The Restless Gun

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Schlitz Playhouse: The Restless Gun was actually the pilot for the series, The Restless Gun.  It starred John Payne, best known for Miracle on 34th Street, as Britt Ponset.  He was somewhat of a nomad, the typical drifting cowboy with a lot of friends who worked for awhile here and then moved on to there, having all kinds of adventures along the way.

When the pilot became a series, a few changes were made, including Payne’s character’s name, which became Vint Bonner.  However, he still roamed the land, too restless to stay in one place for long.

There were a couple of notable guest stars in this episode.  Michael Landon of Bonanza and Highway to Heaven fame played one of the bad guys.  He got to snarl and look mean.  He may not have had the biggest part, but he was affective and definitely stood out.

Then there was Perry Mason’s Paul Drake, William Hopper.  He played Don Maler, a man with a past who Britt has to help out.

The action in the show was decent, and the plot was actually about average.  The acting, though, was good, and Hopper and Payne did a nice job establishing a rapport that did work well.


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