Don't be fooled by his down-home demeanor and country-boy ways; criminal defense lawyer Ben Matlock is worth every penny of his fee. Count on Matlock to visit the crime scene, scope out the clues everyone else missed, and dramatically reveal the real criminal (usually a killer) during a climactic trial sequence.
Marshal Matt Dillon (then-newcomer James Arness) tries to prevent lawlessness from overtaking Dodge City, Kansas. Helping to keep him grounded are saloon proprietor Miss Kitty Russell and Doc Adams. The television series grew out of the long-running radio serial of the same name, although for a short time they were both on the airwaves.
Ben Cartwright is the patriarch of an all-male Nevada ranching family. Set during and after the Civil War, "Bonanza" is the story of life on the family's thousand-acre spread, known as the Ponderosa, near Virginia City. Ben has his three sons, each with a different (and deceased) mother. Serious eldest son Adam hopes to follow in his father's footsteps; middle son Hoss is a gentle giant -- physically strong, but sometimes naive; and youngest son Little Joe is the most impetuous and romantic of the offspring.
The familiar "plink, plink" of the theme song, accompanied by the line drawing of a man in profile immediately identifies the show as "Alfred Hitchcock Presents." The famed director opens almost every episode with the words "Good evening ..." After a joke -- usually about the evening's sponsor -- Hitchcock lays the groundwork for that episode's freestanding story of suspense and terror.
Dr. Mark Sloan is chief of Internal Medicine at Community General Hospital -- and sometime consultant to the local police department. When he's drawn into a case, he combines sleuthing and medicine to solve the crime. That crime is usually one his detective son, Steve, is working on as a member of the local police department. Dr. Sloan's medical colleagues, including doctors Amanda Bentley, Jack Stewart and Jesse Travis, are also frequently drawn into his investigations.
Charming gunslinger James West and Artemus Gordon, an inventor and master of disguise, are the country's first Secret Service agents, traveling the Old West at the behest of President Ulysses S. Grant, fighting villains, encountering beautiful women and dealing with fiendish plots to take over the world.
Dr. Temperance Brennan, a forensic anthropologist who works at the Jeffersonian Institution and also writes books, has an impressive ability to read clues from victims' bones. Consequently, law enforcement calls her to assist with investigations when remains are so badly decomposed, burned or destroyed that standard identification methods are useless. Brennan is teamed with Special Agent Seeley Booth, a former Army sniper, who mistrusts science and scientists when it comes to solving crimes but who has developed respect for Brennan, both professionally and personally.