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Series / Bat Masterson (1958)

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Bat Masterson is an American Western television series. It aired on NBC from 1958 to 1961.

It is based on the biography Bat Masterson: The Man and the Legend by Richard O'Connor, which was based on the life of marshal/gambler/dandy Bartholemew William Barclay "Bat" Masterson. The series follows Masterson (Gene Barry) as he roams the frontier and protects the innocent.


This series features examples of:

  • Artistic License – History: Bat Masterson's full name in real life was Bartholemew William Barclay Masterson, with "Bat" being a nickname for Masterson's first name. However, in "No Amnesty For Death", Masterson says his name is William Barkley Masterson. So not only they remove the name he is nicknamed after, another of his names is misspelled.
  • Cane Fu: When he isn't shooting or punching opponents, Masterson is often using his Classy Cane as a weapon.
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  • Classy Cane: Masterson often has a cane with him. When he isn't shooting or punching opponents, he is often using the cane as a weapon.
  • Historical Beauty Upgrade: The real Bat Masterson looked more like Seamus McFly from Back to the Future Part III rather than the Tall, Dark, and Handsome profile Gene Barry gave him.
  • Recurring Character: The closest thing the series has to a recurring character is the lovely card dealer Ellie Winters (played by Allison Hayes, who also played the title role in Attack of the 50-Foot Woman), who had a recurring role in 7 episodes.
  • Shoe Phone: In one episode, Masterson's Classy Cane was modified to be a rifle in order to fight a crazed cheating rifle-wielding man who wanted to kill Masterson; he changed it back to normal afterward.
  • Very Loosely Based on a True Story: The show was based on a biography of Bat Masterson. That's about as much as it shares with regards of the real Masterson's story.
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