A shortlived, but beloved, 1970s Western
series about the adventures of James "Grizzly" Adams, a fugitive who fled to the mountains after being wrongfully accused of a crime.
Along the way, he rescues a orphan grizzly bear cub who becomes his closest companion, Ben. Even as Ben grows into a massive adult, Adams learns that he has an uncanny link to the local wildlife who have no fear of him and interact as part of their world. Adams has human friends too, the trader Mad Jack and Nakoma who are sworn to keep his existence secret.
After the series' initial feature film appearance, the TV series typically as Adams meeting visitors in his mountain home while keeping a wary eye for bounty hunters coming for him. For drama, the series makes it clear that the wilderness is a dangerous place for amateurs to live in and Adams and company often have to come to the rescue when the visitors get in trouble.
The series concluded in 1982 with the Grand Finale
TV movie, The Capture of Grizzly Adams
, where a bounty hunter uses Adams' hitherto unmentioned daughter to draw him out of hiding. In the end, Adams saves the day and proves his innocence.
Very loosely based on the story of the real James Adams.
This show provides examples of:
- Bears Are Bad News: Not with Ben
- Friend to All Living Things: Adams is like this. Large predators seem to be the exception, but Ben is easily able to make them back off.
- Mountain Man
- Nature Hero
- Nature Is Not Nice: Adams and his friends are the first to note that the mountains is a dangerous area to live if you don't know what you're doing.
- For instance, one episode, "Tenderfoot Theodore," had a young and naive Theodore Roosevelt try living in the mountains and proved hopeless at it. This especially applies when he tries to chop down a tree using a book's instructions while Mad Jack's narration makes it clear that is a dangerous task for a beginner and should be done under the instruction of a more experienced person. As expected, the tree promptly falls on Theodore, pinning him down while being threatened by a rattlesnake and has to be saved by Grizzly Adams and Mad Jack.
- Wild Wilderness: No one outside the woods knows Adams or his exploits.