4,517 Pages

Name Bonanza
Mentioned In Homecoming, Adrift, Fire + Water, The Long Con, Every Man for Himself
Genre Western
Created by David Dortort
Seasons 14
Running Time 60 minutes
Channel NBC
Original Run 1959-1973
Starring Pernell Roberts
Lorne Greene
Dan Blocker
Michael Landon
Victor Sen Young
Guy Williams
David Canary
Mitch Vogel
Ray Teal
Bing Russell
Tim Matheson

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Bonanza was an American television series that ran on NBC from 1959 to 1973. Lasting 14 seasons, it is among one of the longest running Western television series as well as one of the most popular, and continues to air sporadically on stations across the country.


The show chronicled the weekly adventures of the Cartwright family, headed by wise, thrice widowed patriarch Ben Cartwright (Lorne Greene). He had three sons, each by a different wife: the oldest was the urbane architect Adam Cartwright (Pernell Roberts) who built the ranch house; the second was the warm and lovable giant Eric, better known by his nickname: "Hoss" (Dan Blocker); and the youngest was the hotheaded and impetuous Joseph or "Little Joe" (Michael Landon). The family's cook was the Chinese immigrant Hop Sing (Victor Sen Yung). "Bonanza" was considered an atypical western for its time, as the core of the storylines dealt with Ben and his three dissimilar sons, how they cared for one another, their neighbors and their land.


One of the more popular characters to appear in Bonanza is that of Eric "Hoss" Cartwright. The name 'Hoss' has become one of Sawyer's most commonly used nicknames for his fellow islanders. To date, he has used the name 'Hoss' to address the following people: Jack, Michael, Hurley, Locke, and Pickett. When addressing Jack and Michael, Sawyer was referring to the fact they they were carrying guns. The last three were references to different personality traits of Hoss that Hurley, Locke, and Pickett were exhibiting.

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