Bonanza - Premise

Premise

The show chronicles the weekly adventures of the Cartwright family, headed by the thrice-widowed patriarch Ben Cartwright (Lorne Greene). He had three sons, each by a different wife: the eldest was the urbane architect Adam Cartwright (Pernell Roberts) who built the ranch house; the second was the warm and lovable giant Eric "Hoss" (Dan Blocker); and the youngest was the hotheaded and impetuous Joseph or "Little Joe" (Michael Landon). Via exposition (Bonanza, "Rose For Lotta", premiere, 9/12/59) and flashback episodes, each wife was accorded a different ethnicity: English (Bonanza, "Elizabeth My Love"; episode #65) Swedish (Bonanza, "Inger My Love", episode #95) and French Creole (Bonanza, "Marie My Love", episode #120) respectively. The family's cook was the Chinese immigrant Hop Sing (Victor Sen Yung). Greene, Roberts, Blocker, and Landon were billed equally. The opening credits would alternate the order among the four stars.

The family lived on a 600,000+ acre ranch (over one thousand square-miles) called the Ponderosa on the eastern shore of Lake Tahoe in Nevada. The vast size of the Cartwrights' land was quietly revised to "half a million acres" on Lorne Greene's 1964 song, "Saga of the Ponderosa." The ranch name refers to the Ponderosa Pine, common in the West. The nearest town to the Ponderosa was Virginia City, where the Cartwrights would go to converse with Sheriff Roy Coffee (played by veteran actor Ray Teal), or his deputy Clem Foster (Bing Russell).

Bonanza was considered an atypical western for its time, as the core of the storylines dealt less about the range but more with Ben and his three dissimilar sons, how they cared for one another, their neighbors, and just causes. "You always saw stories about family on comedies or on an anthology, but Bonanza was the first series that was week-to-week about a family and the troubles it went through. Bonanza was a period drama that attempted to confront contemporary social issues. That was very difficult to do on television. Most shows that tried to do it failed because the sponsors didn't like it, and the networks were nervous about getting letters", explains Stephen Battaglio, a senior editor for TV Guide magazine (Paulette Cohn, "Bonanza: TV Trailblazer", American Profile Magazine, p. 12, June 5, 2009).

Episodes ranged from high drama ("Bushwacked", episode #392, 1971; "Shanklin", episode #409, 1972) to broad comedy ("Hoss and the Leprechauns", episode #146, 1964; "Caution, Bunny Crossing", episode #358, 1969) and addressed such meaty issues as the environment ("Different Pines, Same Wind", episode #304, 1968), substance abuse ("The Hidden Enemy", episode #424, 1972), domestic violence ("First Love", episode #427, 1972), anti-war sentiment ("The Weary Willies", episode #364, 1970), and illegitimate births ("Love Child", episode #370, 1970; "Rock-A-Bye Hoss", episode #393, 1971). The series sought to illustrate the cruelty of bigotry against: Asians ("The Fear Merchants", episode #27, 1960; "The Lonely Man", episode #404, 1971), African-Americans ("Enter Thomas Bowers", episode #164, 1964; "The Wish", episode #326, 1968; "Child", episode #305, 1969), Native Americans ("The Underdog", episode #180, 1964; "Terror at 2:00", episode #384, 1970), Jews, ("Look to the Stars", episode #90, 1962); the disabled ("Tommy", episode #249, 1966) and "little people" ("It's A Small World", episode #347, 1968).

Originally, the Cartwrights tended to be depicted as put-off by outsiders. Lorne Greene, however, objected to this, pointing out that as the area's largest timber and livestock producer, the family should be less clannish. The producers agreed with this observation and changed the Cartwrights to be more amiable.

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Other articles related to "premise, premises":

Premise

A premise is a statement that an argument claims will induce or justify a conclusion. In other words: a premise is an assumption that something is true. In logic, an argument requires a set of (at least) two declarative sentences (or "propositions") known as the premises along with another declarative sentence (or "proposition") known as the conclusion. This structure of two premises and one conclusion forms the basic argumentative structure. More complex arguments can use a series of rules to connect several premises to one conclusion, or to derive a number of conclusions from the original premises which then act as premises for additional conclusions. An example of this is the use of the rules of inference found within symbolic logic.

Aristotle held that any logical argument could be reduced to two premises and a conclusion. Premises are sometimes left unstated in which case they are called missing premises, for example:

Socrates is mortal, since all men are mortal.

It is evident that a tacitly understood claim is that Socrates is a man. The fully expressed reasoning is thus:

Since all men are mortal and Socrates is a man, Socrates is mortal.

In this example, the independent clauses preceding the comma (namely, "all men are mortal" and "Socrates is a man") are the premises, while "Socrates is mortal" is the conclusion.

The proof of a conclusion depends on both the truth of the premises and the validity of the argument.

Diana Sands - Selected Credits - Theatre
... Vivian Beaumont Theatre We Bombed in New Haven Ruth Ambassador Theatre 1965 The Premise The Premise Improvisational theatre with material by the performers ... Best Actress in a Play 1963 The Living Premise Obie Award, Distinguished Performance 1962 Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright Adelaide Smith Booth Theatre ...
Tautology (rhetoric)
... do not concern themselves that the premises are correct or not, but whether the conclusions derive logically ... Rhetorical tautologies guarantee the truth of the proposition, where the expectation (premise) was for a testable construct, any conclusion is by the precepts of ... Circular reasoning differs from tautologies in that the premise is restated as the conclusion in an argument, instead of deriving the conclusion from the premise with arguments, while ...
Masked Man Fallacy
... One form of the fallacy may be summarized as follows Premise 1 I know who X is ... Premise 2 I do not know who Y is ... The problem arises because Premise 1 and Premise 2 can be simultaneously true even when X and Y refer to the same person ...
Argument From Desire
... Major premise All innate human desires have objects that exist ... The premise cannot be proved but is plausible ... Minor premise There is a desire for "we know not what" whose object cannot be identified ...

Famous quotes containing the word premise:

    We have to give ourselves—men in particular—permission to really be with and get to know our children. The premise is that taking care of kids can be a pain in the ass, and it is frustrating and agonizing, but also gratifying and enjoyable. When a little kid says, “I love you, Daddy,” or cries and you comfort her or him, life becomes a richer experience.
    —Anonymous Father. Ourselves and Our Children, by Boston Women’s Health Book Collective, ch. 3 (1978)