Bonanza was a hit TV show that took the world by storm during the 1960s. The show followed the trials and tribulations of the Cartwright family, who worked and lived on The Ponderosa timber ranch in Nevada. The quintessential American cowboy and patriarch was Ben Cartwright, played by Lorne Greene. Ben, along with his grown-up sons Adam, Hoss, and Little Joe struggled through a series of crises and catastrophes during the show’s 14-season run. Bonanza first hit American TV screens in 1959, and it soon became both a commercial and critical success. One of NBC’s primary objectives when making Bonanza was to persuade ordinary Americans to buy color RCA TV sets because, at the time, RCA was the parent company of NBC. Are you a Bonanza superfan? Let’s find out!
Jake didn’t think he’d become a writer when he was growing up in southern Saskatchewan, Canada, but fate had another idea. After barely squeaking through grade 9 English, by the luck of the draw Jake found himself with the most inspiring literature instructor his small town had ever known, and grade 10 English changed his life! Suddenly, evenings once spent at the hockey rink were spent curled up on the couch with the best of Hemingway, Dickens, and John Grisham. A valedictorian address and English degree at the University of Regina later, Jake is proud to call Heywise his favorite place to pen informative quizzes about all his passion projects. If you’re reading a post and pick up a hint of classic English literature, you’re probably reading something by Jake - especially if you come away feeling like a slightly better person for it.
Bonanza ended its incredible 14-season run in 1973, but the show’s legacy lived on for decades afterward. Several subsequent TV shows adapted the Bonanza formula over the years, including The High Chaparral and The Big Valley. In 1988, Bonanza: The Next Generation hit American TV screens with a nostalgic bang. While none of the original cast reprised their roles, the made-for-TV movie featured Michael Landon Jr — the son of Michael Landon. Two more Bonanza movies followed, but the ratings were disappointing. In 2001, a prequel TV show called The Ponderosa hit cable TV screens, but it was canceled after just one season.
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