Lassie (CBS 1954-1974, Tommy Rettig, Jan Clayton)

Family drama series. Unflappable and incredibly loyal and brave female collie dog Lassie who despite several changes in master always managed to be the hero of the hour.

The show was long running and underwent many cast and plot changes, initially Lassie belonged to Jeff Miller but in 1957 his mother sold the farm following the death of his grandfather (actor George Cleveland having died in real life) and the Martin family became the new owners of Lassie, in 1964 the Martin’s decided to emigrate to Australia leaving Lassie behind of course, elderly Cully Wilson looked after him for a while but following his death Lassie was taken in by ranger Corey Stuart, later in 1968 two new rangers were brought in but the producers were moving Lassie into more of an independent streak and by 1971 she was without a human companion at all.

In fact 1971 was a major year for Lassie as in a seven episode arc she fell in love with a male dog and gave birth to a litter of puppies. The show finished on CBS 12 September 1971 but continued in Syndication for a further three years and towards the end of the shows run Lassie again found herself with a human family, living on the Holden ranch in Solvang, California.

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There was also an animated version called Lassie’s Rescue Rangers as well as a 1980’s revival called The New Lassie. The series of course was based on the novel by Eric Knight which in turn gave us the legendary MGM movie Lassie Come Home which starred Elizabeth Taylor and Roddy McDowell.

production details
USA | CBS | X 90 minutes | September 12, 1954 – fall 1974

TOMMY RETTIG as Jeff Miller (1954-57)
JAN CLAYTON as Ellen Miller (1954-57)
GEORGE CLEVELAND as ‘Gramps’ Miller (1954-57)
DONALD KEELER as Sylvester ‘Porky’ Brockway (1954-57)
PAUL MAXEY as Matt Brockway (1954-57)
JON PROVOST as Timmy (1957-64)
ARTHUR SPACE as Doc Weaver (1954-64)
CLORIS LEACHMAN as Ruth Martin (1957-58)
JON SHEPODD as Paul Martin (1957-58)
GEORGE CHANDLER as Uncle Petrie Martin (1958-59)
JUNE LOCKHART as Ruth Martin (1958- 64)
HUGH REILLY as Paul Martin (1958- 64)
TODD FERRELL as Boomer Bates (1958- 59)
ANDY CLYDE as Cully Wilson (1958- 64)
ROBERT BRAY as Corey Stuart (1964-69)
JED ALLAN as Scott Turner (1968-70)
JACK DE MAVE as Bob Erickson (1968-70)
RON HAYES as Garth Holden (1972-73)
SKIP BURTON as Ron Holden (1972-74)
JOSHUA ALBEE as Mike Holden (1972-74)
LARRY WILCOX as Dale Mitchell (1972-74)
LARRY PENNELL as Keith Holden (1973-74)
PAMELYN FERDIN as Lucy Baker (1973-74)
SHERRY BOUCHER as Sue Lambert (1973-74)

Alastair James is the editor in chief for Memorable TV. He has been involved in media since his university days. Alastair is passionate about television, and some of his favourite shows include Line of Duty, Luther and Traitors. He is always on the lookout for hot new shows, and is always keen to share his knowledge with others.