While rummaging through all the old westerns, I came across this little gem that I had totally forgotten about. It was a great western with a good deal of humor added to it. So I figure it was time to give it a good dusting and bring it back to the surface.
The TV Western, Sugarfoot aired from 1957 to 1961, starring Will Hutchins as the “green horn” frontier lawyer Tom Brewster and costarred veteran actor Jack Elam as his sidekick Toothy Thompson. I can’t think of a better character name for Jack Elam then Toothy!
Sugarfoot was one of the earliest productions between ABC and the struggling Warner Brothers studio, chaired by William T. Orr. During this period of time, Warner Brothers produced other well-known westerns including: Maverick starring James Garner and Jack Kelly, Cheyenne starring Clint Walker, Lawman starring John Russell, Peter Brown and Peggy Castle, Bronco starring Ty Hardin and Colt 45 starring Wayde Preston.
Tom Brewster was a correspondence school graduate whose total lack of cowboy skills earned him the nickname Sugarfoot. The pilot episode was a remake of the 1954 Western The Boy From Oklahoma.
In the movie, The Boy From Oklahoma, Will Rogers, Jr starred in the title role. His character never used a gun, instead he used his roping skills to capture villains. The television show Sugarfoot altered this, somewhat, by making Brewster a “reluctant” user of a gun yet was willing to as a last resort.
The Pilot episode of Sugarfoot “Brannigan’s Boots” was so similar to the earlier film that Sheb Wooley and Slim Pickens reprised their roles in the show as Pete and Shorty. Slim Pickens was a well known veteran actor in many westerns, both in films and television. Sheb Wooley is best know for his character on the TV Western Rawhide, as scout for the cattle drive, Pete Nolan. Well known actor Dennis Hopper was also in the pilot playing Billy the Kid.
Some thought that Sugarfoot was related to the 1951 Movie Sugarfoot, starring Randolph Scott. This was not the case at all, there was absolutely no similarities whatsoever.