Action In The Afternoon
Action in the Afternoon is an western television
series that aired live on CBS from February 2, 1953 to January 29, 1954.
The series originated from the studios and back lot of WCAU-TV,
Channel 10 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was broadcast Monday
through Friday regardless of the weather. The half-hour series
aired variously at 3:30 pm or 4:00 pm, throughout its run.
While ad-libbing his pitch for the
series to the executives at CBS, Charles Vanda set the story in
the fictional town of Huberle, Montana, a name derived from CBS
executives Hubbell Robinson and Harry Omerle.
Action in the Afternoon is the only live outdoor western
ever to appear on network television in the United States. Other
live westerns existed, however Action in the Afternoon was the
only one that did not include prerecorded film segments in the
program. If things moved along too fast, or actors needed time to
move between the indoor and outdoor sets, the time would be filled
by Jack Valentine singing with The Tommy Ferguson Trio playing
Because the program was live and outdoors, music director Richard
Lester made every effort to hide the sounds of the world beyond
the back lot. The sounds of airplanes overhead and trucks
backfiring as they drove past the studio were covered with
However, during one particular broadcast a very loud unscripted
sound was heard, and was soon discovered to be a horse biting one
of the many microphones hidden around the outdoor set.
Only a few video episodes of Action in the Afternoon
remain. They can be viewed at The Paley Center for Media in New
York City. The show can also be seen on TVS Western.Com.
Barry Cassell ... Sheriff Ace Bancroft
Harriss Forrest ... Ozzie Matthews
Jack Valentine ... Himself
John Zacherle ... The Coroner
Mary Elaine Watts ... Kate
Blake Ritter ... Narrator
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Tommy Ferguson ... Himself (leader, Tommy Ferguson Trio)
Ferguson Trio ... Themselves