The Texas Rangers
22 Films
1942 - 1945



(From Old Corral image collection)

Above from left to right are Dave O'Brien, Guy Wilkerson and Jim Newill in a lobby card from THE RANGERS TAKE OVER (PRC, 1942).



(Courtesy of Les Adams)

Above is the title lobby card for TRAIL OF TERROR (PRC, 1943), one of the best of the Texas Rangers series. The masked Dave O'Brien is having a disagreement with Dan White. In this film, O'Brien plays his lawman self as well as his evil twin brother.



(From Old Corral image collection)

Above is a lobby card from GUNSMOKE MESA (PRC, 1944), and from left to right are Jim Newill, Dave O'Brien, Jack Ingram, and on the floor looking over some unidentified baddies is Guy Wilkerson. Notice a mistake? The image used to prepare this lobby card has been reversed, and they all have left-handed holsters. See crop below which I've flipped to show the correct image with right hand gunbelts.





(From Old Corral image collection)

Above - Tex Ritter pounds away on stuntman and supporting player Kermit Maynard, the brother of Ken Maynard, in FLAMING BULLETS (PRC, 1945) the last film in the Texas Rangers series and Ritter's finale as a western film hero.

Tex Ritter retired from cowboy films and concentrated on singing, personal appearances, Capitol records, Grand Old Opry, etc.  He had several hit songs, including the title tune from Gary Cooper's HIGH NOON (1952).  He passed away in 1974.

Dave O'Brien made a few more B-features, and then became entrenched as the star/writer of the Pete Smith comedy shorts at MGM.  Later, he became a writer on the Red Skelton TV show, and the team won an Emmy award in 1961 for the comedy sketches on the 1960-1961 Skelton shows.  Loving the sea and sailing, O'Brien passed away from a heart attack in 1969 during a yacht race near Catalina.

James Newill, who had a fine voice, returned to the stage and singing ... as well as some activities unrelated to films and Hollywood. He passed away in 1975 from cancer.

You'll find biographies on Newill, Ritter and O'Brien on the Old Corral --- look in the Heroes section.

As to PRC, they had Buster Crabbe and Al 'Fuzzy' St. John doing the Billy the Kid/Billy Carson group that would ultimately run for 36 films during the years 1941 - 1946. With the demise of the Texas Rangers, PRC re-adjusted priorities and cowboy heroes, and out came another series.  Their new star was singer Eddie Dean.  Dean's initial films were given higher budgets (by PRC's standards) and filmed in glorious CineColor, a two-strip color process similar to Republic's Tru-Color which was used in the post-World War II films of Roy Rogers. In Dean's first starrer, SONG OF OLD WYOMING (1945), we were introduced to a black-garbed range rider named Al LaRue. But that's another story.



The 22 Texas Rangers films

14 starring Dave O'Brien, Jim Newill, Guy Wilkerson:

THE RANGERS TAKE OVER (1942)
BAD MEN OF THUNDER GAP (1943)
WEST OF TEXAS (1943)
BORDER BUCKAROOS (1943)
FIGHTING VALLEY (1943)
TRAIL OF TERROR (1943)
RETURN OF THE RANGERS (1943)
BOSS OF RAWHIDE (1943)
GUNSMOKE MESA (1944)
OUTLAW ROUNDUP (1944)
GUNS OF THE LAW (1944)
THE PINTO BANDIT (1944)
SPOOK TOWN (1944)
BRAND OF THE DEVIL (1944)


8 starring Tex Ritter, Dave O'Brien, Guy Wilkerson:

GANGSTERS OF THE FRONTIER (1944)
DEAD OR ALIVE (1944)
THE WHISPERING SKULL (1944)
MARKED FOR MURDER (1944)
ENEMY OF THE LAW (1945)
THREE IN THE SADDLE (1945)
FRONTIER FUGITIVES (1945)
FLAMING BULLETS (1945)




  Although some of the data is incomplete or inaccurate, the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) has information on Ritter, Newill, O'Brien, Wilkerson, as well as directors Herman, Clifton, Fraser and Drake.  Click on:

Tex Ritter: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0728811/
Jim Newill: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0627910/
Dave O'Brien: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0639495/
Guy Wilkerson: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0929116/
Harry Fraser: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0292134/
Elmer Clifton: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0166730/
Oliver Drake: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0236980/
Al Herman: http://us.imdb.com/name/nm0379092/"



Back to prior page

To Cowboy Trios Homepage To Old Corral Homepage