In an unusual twist on the standard Western, widower Lucas McCain struggles to successfully homestead his ranch in North Fork, New Mexico while raising his son Mark. Unfortunately, the Marshall of North Fork has a difficult time handling the weekly "bad guys," and Lucas must repeatedly get out his Winchester Rifle to protect himself, his son, and his neighbors.
Last Episode05x26 Old Tony Aired: Apr. 08, 1963
Mark and his girlfriend Laurie discover that an old hermit is very lonely.
The Rifleman: Season 1, Episode #3 - End of a Young Gun
When Mark gets caught on a mountain ledge, a young outlaw risks his life to rescue him and breaks his leg doing so.
The Rifleman: Season 1, Episode #20 - The Deadeye Kid
Mark helps a boy from Brooklyn hide from the law when the boy is accused of murder.
Series Fun Facts
- Chuck Connors is said to have fired 12 shots with the rifle in the opening credits.
- In the pilot for the series, by Sam Peckinpah (originally written for Gunsmoke but turned down for that show), Chuck Connors' character was named John McCain, not Lucas McCain, and he didn't…
[show]In the pilot for the series, by Sam Peckinpah (originally written for Gunsmoke but turned down for that show), Chuck Connors' character was named John McCain, not Lucas McCain, and he didn't have a son. It was producer Arnold Laven's idea to make McCain a widower with a son. Also, McCain was originally supposed to have been a dead shot with a pistol. Laven had the idea to use a customized Winchester rifle as McCain's weapon of choice.
- Goof (anachronisms): Lucas McCain's rifle is a modified 1892 .44-40 Winchester, even though the series clearly establishes itself in the 1880s.