Bonanza Forums

NBC (ended 1973)

Favorite Cartwright Brother

  • Avatar of jedimastertahl

    jedimastertahl

    [1]Jan 7, 2006
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    The choices are of course:

    Adam
    Hoss
    Little Joe

    Should I include Jamie? He's only an adopted Cartwright. Well vote for him if you want.

    My favorite is Hoss. Adam seems a little stuffy and Little Joe is cute, but immature.

    Hoss just is so interesting to watch. He works well in a comedy episode as well as the more serious episodes. He is even believable as the love interest. No wonder the show couldn't last very long after Dan Blocker's premature death. I'm sure it was very hard for Lorne Greene and Michael Landon to go back to the set after that.
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  • Avatar of Random862

    Random862

    [2]Jan 8, 2006
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    I liked them all for different reasons.

    But if I had to pick only one... it would be Hoss. His character came across as "big and dumb", but he had a great deal of commonsense. Plus he was sensitive ... like a giant teddy bear

    Notable mentions...

    Adam is the intelligent one of the bunch, but he plays it too safe all of the time. Very analytical.

    Little Joe is the cute one and ladies man, but he's impulsive and almost child-like in his impulsiveness and desire to show he's grown up.

    I don't recall "Jamie". Was he in earlier or later shows?
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  • Avatar of jedimastertahl

    jedimastertahl

    [3]Jan 8, 2006
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    He was in the very late episodes. He was an orphan boy that was adopted by Ben.
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  • Avatar of jedimastertahl

    jedimastertahl

    [4]Jan 8, 2006
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    I just looked at the cast guide and Jamie (played by Mitch Vogel) was in the show from 1970-73, much longer than I thought!

    I agree with your thoughts on the characters, BTW.
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  • Avatar of rgrimsley

    rgrimsley

    [5]Jan 8, 2006
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    I agree with Hoss. He has the most character and the gentlest spirit! If I had to pick one for my own brother, it would be Hoss.
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  • Avatar of jedimastertahl

    jedimastertahl

    [6]Jan 8, 2006
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    Welcome to the forum, rgrimsley!
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  • Avatar of Random862

    Random862

    [7]Jan 9, 2006
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    Wow, I looked up Jamie on the internet. I really don't remember that character at all. Plus I've never seen him in any of the many reruns of the show either.
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  • Avatar of jedimastertahl

    jedimastertahl

    [8]Jan 9, 2006
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    I think I've only seen a couple of episodes with him. I didn't really think the character added anything to the show.
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  • Avatar of giantsfan2401

    giantsfan2401

    [9]Jan 9, 2006
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    My vote is for Adam. I was sorry he left the show. Does anyone know that he was actually older than Lorne Greene? He was the best actor of the bunch, Shakespearean and all. Last week I watched a film called "The Legend of Tom Dooley", starring Michael Landon as Tom Dooley. This was pre-Bonanza, probably getting him the role of Little Joe, as it came out just before Bonanza started. I don't want to piss off his female fans, but, he was just awful, but I'm sure he got the role because he was a "teen idol".
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  • Avatar of jedimastertahl

    jedimastertahl

    [10]Jan 9, 2006
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    I was sorry when Adam left also. It was too bad to break up the original cast. It was still a great show but it wasn't quite the same afterward.

    I've never seen Michael Landon in anything besides Bonanza and Little House on the Prairie. Wasn't his first movie 'I was a Teenage Werewolf' or something like that?
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  • Avatar of Sneddy2

    Sneddy2

    [11]Jan 9, 2006
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    giantsfan2401 wrote:
    My vote is for Adam. I was sorry he left the show. Does anyone know that he was actually older than Lorne Greene?


    Pernell Roberts was actually 13 years younger than Lorne Greene. Both Pernell and Dan Blocker were born in the same year - 1928. Greene was born in 1915. Michael Landon was born in 1936.

    giantsfan2401 wrote:
    Last week I watched a film called "The Legend of Tom Dooley", starring Michael Landon as Tom Dooley. This was pre-Bonanza, probably getting him the role of Little Joe, as it came out just before Bonanza started. I don't want to piss off his female fans, but, he was just awful, but I'm sure he got the role because he was a "teen idol".


    Yep one of the reasons that ML got the role was that he would appeal to the young girls watching the show.
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  • Avatar of Random862

    Random862

    [12]Jan 9, 2006
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    When Dan Blocker died, does anyone know how they dealt with it within the show?
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  • Avatar of Sneddy2

    Sneddy2

    [13]Jan 10, 2006
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    They didn't do too much in the show to acknowledged DB's passing. There were references to Hoss dying in "Forever" and one other episode (which I can't remember the name of at the moment.

    In "Forever" (which was originally written for DB but was re-written), there is also a scene where they cut to a picture of Hoss on a dresser.
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  • Avatar of giantsfan2401

    giantsfan2401

    [14]Jan 13, 2006
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    Yes, I believe that you're right. That was a 1957 film if I'm not mistaken. I don't know if you have seen it, but it was a typical 1950's horror flick. B-movie bad, like Steve McQueen in "The Blob", yuck!!!!!!!!!!! And I like Steve. But "Tom Dooley" was a bigger budget film, and Little Joe was the weak link.
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    giantsfan2401

    [15]Jan 13, 2006
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    I'm sorry, I didn't mean to put out false info. I had always heard that he was older than Lorne Greene. Thanks for setting me straight.
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  • Avatar of tiger-rj

    tiger-rj

    [16]Jan 16, 2006
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    Hey... Hoss is not the coolest cartwright. although large as life, and the nicest character tv ever made, Joe is much more interesting. and I think it`s fun that he is a little immature. lol. but I agree when it comes to adam being stuffed. and I don`t think you schould include jamie. i don`t think of him as a . at least not the same way. he he
    tiger-rj
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  • Avatar of MaxPointy

    MaxPointy

    [17]Apr 7, 2006
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    Hoss's death was never explained in any detail on the series. The reunion movies in the early 90's did a lot to clear up what happened to the Cartwright brothers.

    In "Bonanza: The Return", circa 1905, Josh comes to the Ponderosa with an axe to grind , knowing only that his father is Hoss Cartwright, but thinking that Hoss abandoned his mother and left her to raise him alone. Bronc explains that (presumably in the time between seasons 13 and 14) Hoss fell in love with a local girl (her name was never given) and before long she was pregnant. Hoss planned to do the 'right thing' and marry her, but died before he had the chance (IIRC, the Hoss' tombstone listed him as having died in the late 1870s). According to Bronc, a wagon with women and children on board tried to cross a raging river on the Ponderosa, but got stuck part way with the water level rising. Hoss happened to pass by the scene and tried to rescue the stranded family but died in the effort. In the end, Hoss was given a selfless heroic death befitting a Cartwright.

    It's explained that Josh mother soon left town in shame, never to return again. Ben apparently spent years trying to track her down, along with the grandchild he never met. He spent years writing to him, all the letter being returned to sender. Sarah eventually read these letters to Josh to help him understand what kind of men his father and grandfather were. While it's not specifically mentioned on screen, it can be inferred that Josh is Hoss's only child. We never see his mother on screen.

    As for Adam, in "The Return" A.C explained that Adam left the Ponderosa and spent time in various academic and business pursuits before eventually settling in Australia and establishing a ranch of his own in the outback. When we first meet A.C. he's very rough around the edges and makes a few passing references to the bushmen that taught him what he knows about ranching. On a more bittersweet note, A.C. in "Under Attack" mentions that Adam spent most of his adult life trying to get as far away from the Ponderosa as he could. We're not told why he left, but we can infer it wasn't under pleasant circumstances. Of all the Cartwright brothers though, he's the only one mentioned as still being alive (by this time, circa 1907.) A.C. never specifically mentions whether or not he has any brothers or sisters, so, for all we know, there could still be a great deal more Cartwrights out the in the Australian Outback.

    As for Little Joe, he inherited his father's same tragic luck in marriage. His first wife died in Season 14, and he presumably remarried shortly thereafter and had a son named Benjamin, named after his grandfather. We're not told whatever happened to her, but when we first meet Benj, he seems to hate the Ponderosa and doesn't care that it's being overrun by strip miners. We can infer that something bad ie: accident, disease, violent crime happened that claimed Joe's second wife. Joe's third wife is the one know the most about. Her name is Annabelle (according to "
    The Next Generation") and shortly after meeting her, Little Joe moved to Boston and married her, and soon fathered a daughter named Sarah. It was while living in Boston that Little Joe's reserve militia unit was reactivated during the Spanish-American war. In "The Return" (circa 1905) Sarah mentions that "Pa's been dead for five years now" which pegs Little Joe's death as having taken place in 1900. The US lost only about 400 troops in combat during the war, but upwards of 5000 due to disease and infection. If Joe didn't die in the war, but in 1900, we can infer that he returned from the war in poor health and died as a result less than 2 years later. Sarah mentions that Little Joe was honored as a war hero and is buried in Arlington National Cemetery, though she thinks his place is on the Ponderosa.

    We don't know exactly how Ben died, but we know he died in 1899 (according to his grave marker). He mentions in his series of letters to Josh that his health is failing quickly and he knows he doesn't have much time left to find his long-lost grandson, and . Unfortunately, Ben dies a full six years before Josh ever returns to the Ponderosa. According to Ben's grave marker, He lived from 1809-1899, making him 90 at the time of his death, not bad for someone who always seemed to stubborn to die.

    Jamie is never mentioned, but my conjecture is that he stayed on the Ponderosa with Ben in his last days, then left to carve out a life of his own after Ben died. I don't think Little Joe would ever have left his father old and feeble on the Ponderosa alone without one of his other sons or trusted ranch hands ther to hold down the fort.

    Hope my memory serves me well and that this few Cartwright biographical tidbits help out.
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  • Avatar of MaxPointy

    MaxPointy

    [18]Apr 7, 2006
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    [This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]
    Edited on 04/07/2006 11:02pm
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  • Avatar of jjskywriter

    jjskywriter

    [19]Apr 12, 2006
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    I'm going to jump in here. First off a big shout out to my girl Sneddy!!!

    Thanks for fixing that info about Lorne and Pernell BTW. It is a common misconception between some fans that the rumour was that Pernell was older than Lorne. This of course as Sneddy stated was not the case. However it is no shocking mystery that Lorne and Pernell didn't quite see eye to eye in a lot of cases, and didn't get on well a lot of the time. This I have read in various magazines and such.

    As for the topic here I can't really pick a brother. They were all great. Each had their personality traits that we liked and each had quirks that turned us off. They all added something to the show.

    However being an unadulterated Ben fan the main reason I could never pick a brother is because I spend most of my time gazing at daddy.
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  • Avatar of Sneddy2

    Sneddy2

    [20]Apr 13, 2006
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    It's amazing to see which people that turn up here...thanks jjskywriter
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