Wanted: Dead or Alive

Watch Wanted: Dead or Alive

  • TV-PG
  • 1958
  • 3 Seasons
  • 8.0  (2,727)

Wanted: Dead or Alive was a western television series that aired on CBS from 1958 to 1961. The show starred Steve McQueen as the bounty hunter Josh Randall who takes on dangerous assignments to track down fugitives in the Wild West. Randall is a skilled marksman and uses a customized sawed-off Winchester rifle, which he carries in a holster on his right hip.

The show's premise is simple: Randall is hired by clients who want to bring criminals to justice or collect a reward. The episodes usually start with Randall receiving a new assignment, and then he sets out to track down the target. Along the way, he faces various obstacles such as outlaws, Indians, and treacherous terrain. But with his wits, physical skills, and trusty rifle, he always manages to catch his prey.

Wanted: Dead or Alive was notable for its realism and grittiness. The show did not shy away from depicting violence and death, which was unusual for a network program at the time. McQueen's performance as Randall was also a departure from the typical heroic cowboy archetype. Randall was a flawed character who often used questionable methods to get his job done. He was not afraid to play dirty or intimidate people to get information. This made him a more compelling and complex character than other western heroes of the era.

The show's supporting cast was also noteworthy. Wright King played the role of Jason Nichols, a newspaper reporter who often accompanied Randall on his missions. Nichols provided a moral center to the show and was the only character who challenged Randall's methods. Olan Soule played the recurring character of Toby, a stable hand who provided comic relief and sometimes assisted Randall in his tasks.

The show's production values were impressive for the time. The episodes were shot on location in California and Arizona, which lent authenticity to the Western setting. The show also had a memorable theme song, written by the composer Richard Markowitz, which became a hit song and was covered by various artists.

Wanted: Dead or Alive was a popular show during its run, and it has remained a cult classic among fans of the Western genre. The show's legacy extends beyond its three-year run, as it helped launch McQueen's career as a leading actor. McQueen went on to star in several iconic films like The Magnificent Seven, Bullitt, and The Great Escape.

In conclusion, Wanted: Dead or Alive was a groundbreaking Western television series that set itself apart with its realistic portrayal of violence, a flawed hero, and impressive production values. The show has remained a beloved classic among fans of the genre, and its influence can be seen in later Western shows like Gunsmoke and The Rifleman. Steve McQueen's performance as Josh Randall was a defining moment in his career and helped establish him as one of the greatest actors of his generation.

Wanted: Dead or Alive is a series that is currently running and has 3 seasons (152 episodes). The series first aired on September 6, 1958.

Wanted: Dead or Alive
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Ep 94 - Barney's Bounty
94. Ep 94 - Barney's Bounty
January 1, 1961
Josh attempts to reconcile an old friend and his son.
Ep 93 - Dead Reckoning
93. Ep 93 - Dead Reckoning
January 1, 1961
The wife of a man accused of murder hires Josh to bring him to her before the dead man's brothers find him first.
Ep 92 - The Long Search
92. Ep 92 - The Long Search
January 1, 1961
A Japanese woman travels to the USA to find the American man who proposed to her.
Ep 91 - Monday Morning
91. Ep 91 - Monday Morning
January 1, 1961
An express office employee steals cash from his job, but has a change of heart, hiring Josh to help him return the money before the theft is discovered.
Ep 90 - Detour
90. Ep 90 - Detour
January 1, 1961
A nervous suitor hires Josh to help him get away with his new bride, whose father violently opposes the idea of marriage.
Ep 89 - El Gato
89. Ep 89 - El Gato
January 1, 1961
Josh escorts an eastern photographer eager to take the first picture of El Gato, a crazy bandit living in the hills of Mexico.
Ep 88 - Voice of Silence
88. Ep 88 - Voice of Silence
January 1, 1961
Josh protects a young deaf, mute teen girl from men who want the money stolen and hidden by her father before he went to prison.
Ep 87 - Epitaph
87. Ep 87 - Epitaph
January 1, 1961
When a good sheriff is seduced into robbing a bank by his beautiful but bad girlfriend, the lawman convinces Josh to let him help capture her.
Ep 86 - Hero in the Dust
86. Ep 86 - Hero in the Dust
January 1, 1961
Josh is hired by a man to find his twin brother - who is getting away with murder.
Ep 85 - Bounty for Josh
85. Ep 85 - Bounty for Josh
January 1, 1961
Josh must figure out who murdered his client at a hotel.
Ep 84 - Last Retreat
84. Ep 84 - Last Retreat
January 1, 1961
When a man escapes from prison, Josh must protect the woman whose testimony put him away. With Warren Oates.
Ep 83 - Baa Baa
83. Ep 83 - Baa Baa
January 1, 1961
Josh is hired to find a woman's beloved pet sheep.
Ep 82 - Witch Woman
82. Ep 82 - Witch Woman
January 1, 1960
In Mexico, Josh protects a man and his pregnant wife from villagers who become angered when he throws the town witch off his property.
Ep 81 - Three for One
81. Ep 81 - Three for One
January 1, 1960
A gang kidnaps a sheriff and two others, threatening to kill them unless a prisoner jailed by Josh is set free.
Ep 80 - The Choice
80. Ep 80 - The Choice
January 1, 1960
A woman asks Josh to help her husband - another bounty hunter.
Ep 79 - One Mother Too Many
79. Ep 79 - One Mother Too Many
January 1, 1960
A widow proposes to Josh in an effort to keep custody of her son.
Ep 78 - Medicine Man
78. Ep 78 - Medicine Man
January 1, 1960
Josh and a man posing as a medicine man help a man framed for robbery. With Cloris Leachman.
Ep 77 - Criss Cross
77. Ep 77 - Criss Cross
January 1, 1960
A well-meaning doctor pays an innocent man take the blame for his son't robbery - but the son decides to take steps to insure the man never tells.
Ep 76 - To the Victor
76. Ep 76 - To the Victor
January 1, 1960
Josh is hired to convince the women of a town to come back home - they left after demanding that their men give up their guns for good.
Ep 75 - Surprise Witness
75. Ep 75 - Surprise Witness
January 1, 1960
A surprise witness steps forward to testify against a notorious killer - his own mother.
Ep 74 - Showdown
74. Ep 74 - Showdown
January 1, 1960
Josh is sent to capture a childhood friend who has escaped from prison.
Ep 73 - Twain Shall Meet
73. Ep 73 - Twain Shall Meet
January 1, 1960
A journalist accompanies Josh on his latest manhunt. With Mary Tyler Moore.
Ep 72 - The Looters
72. Ep 72 - The Looters
January 1, 1960
A trio of dangerous prisoners escape from jail and appoint themselves the law after a tornado hits a small town and kills the sheriff.
Ep 71 - Journey for Josh
71. Ep 71 - Journey for Josh
January 1, 1960
Josh falls for a beautiful female prisoner he is transporting to trial - but trouble awaits.
Ep 70 - The Cure
70. Ep 70 - The Cure
January 1, 1960
Josh performs an intervention on the most eligible drunk in town, so the man will appear respectable to his wealthy brother visiting from Philadelphia.
Ep 69 - Trial
69. Ep 69 - Trial
January 1, 1960
Four ex-army soldiers stage an illegal court-martial accusing a former officer of dereliction of duty. With James Coburn.
Barney's Bounty
26. Barney's Bounty
March 29, 1961
Josh stops at his friend Barney's to get horses for his two prisoners, they manager to escape, leaving Josh and Barney to get them back for the reward.
Dead Reckoning
25. Dead Reckoning
March 22, 1961
Paul Decker is wanted for murder. His wife asks Josh to find her husband and bring him back alive before the Taggert brothers catch up with him for murdering their brother.
The Long Search
24. The Long Search
March 15, 1961
Yoshika Nakamura comes west to find a man named Bill Timmons who promised to marry her when he visited Japan. Yoshika hires Josh to help her locate Timmons, and during his venture learns about Japanese culture.
Monday Morning
23. Monday Morning
March 8, 1961
Overridden with guilt Charlie Glover hires Josh to help him return the money he stole from his employer. Complications arise when the head head of operations, Sam Vickers finds out.
22. Detour
March 1, 1961
Martin Fairweather has two lovely daughters which are the objects of a young man's affection. Papa doesn't want to lose his best cook and best cleaner so he proceeds to chase any possible suitors away. Josh's job is to distract Papa long enough for the girls to elope!
El Gato
21. El Gato
February 22, 1961
A timid photographer named Archie Warner comes west with hopes of being the first to shoot a photo of a famous Mexican bandit. Josh happens to be a friend of 'El Gato', and is hired by Archie to met him.
The Voice of Silence
20. The Voice of Silence
February 15, 1961
Josh is hired by Frank Hagen to protect his deaf-mute daughter Carol Hagen while he's away on business. During Josh's stay at the Hagen Farm, he encounters a strange drifter and former bank robber named Harry Brice accompanied by his criminal partners.
19. Epitaph
February 8, 1961
Josh has to find his friend a Sheriff guilty of robbing a bank for a woman. Several other bounty hunters are out looking for the sheriff as well, Josh has to get there first.
Hero in the Dust
18. Hero in the Dust
February 1, 1961
Josh is hired by Harry Weaver to find his twin brother Pete. Pete is using his resemblence to his brother to get away with murder.
Bounty on Josh
17. Bounty on Josh
January 25, 1961
Josh is asked to meet a client at the hotel, at his arrival he is shot. Josh tries to figure out who is behind the shooting.
The Last Retreat
16. The Last Retreat
January 11, 1961
Sarah Lawton's identification led to killer Clem Robinson's conviction. Now Clem has escaped from prison, and Josh is hired for protection by Mrs. Lawton because her lawyer husband is a coward.
15. Baa-Baa
January 4, 1961
Josh is hired to find Baa-Baa a beloved pet of Mrs. Goode's. Her husband is desperate to find Baa-Baa as he is in the dog house with her until Baa-Baa returns. Josh reluctantly goes and looks for the lost sheep admist much ridicule from other ranchers and cowboys alike.
Witch Woman
14. Witch Woman
December 28, 1960
Esperanza is not in love with the notorious Guerra and loves another but is too frightened to tell him because he kills any man who looks at her twice. Josh tries to reason with Guerra.
Three for One
13. Three for One
December 21, 1960
Josh with prisoner Tom Fellows in tow, stops in the town of Center City overnight, unaware that one of Tom's cohorts is devising a plan to free him.
The Choice
12. The Choice
December 14, 1960
Jane Koster asks Josh's help with her husband, Frank who is also a bounty hunter. He is out looking for Stacy Lenz with a score to settle and Jane fears for his life.
One Mother Too Many
11. One Mother Too Many
December 7, 1960
Josh is hired by Beth a widow, to find her runaway son, who is currently in the care of her vindictive mother-in-law.
The Medicine Man
10. The Medicine Man
November 23, 1960
Josh and a phony medicine man help out a man who was framed and falsely accused of the theft of a huge sum of money.
9. Criss-Cross
November 16, 1960
When Josh brings in the wrong man mistakenly and after his release he finds the real criminal notifying Josh of the mans whereabouts.
To the Victor
8. To the Victor
November 9, 1960
Josh is hired by the men of the town to try and persuade the ladies to return to their homes after rebelling against their husbands gunplay.
Surprise Witness
7. Surprise Witness
November 2, 1960
Josh captures a notorious killer but no one wants to testify against him, until a surprise witness come forward, his mother.
The Showdown
6. The Showdown
October 26, 1960
Johnny Haywood, a childhood friend of Josh's claims to be innocent of the crime he is accused of. When he escapes, Josh is ordered to bring him back - dead or alive.
The Twain Shall Meet
5. The Twain Shall Meet
October 19, 1960
Josh allows an Eastern newspaper reporter to go with him on a manhunt for a story.
The Looters
4. The Looters
October 12, 1960
Josh is on his way to River City to pick up three prisoners, when an unexpected tornado destroys the jail, killing the sheriff. Josh is on the hunt to recapture the escapees.
Journey for Josh
3. Journey for Josh
October 5, 1960
Josh is delivering a female prisoner and becomes smitten with her, unknown to him is her accomplice, who is following them to break her loose.
The Cure
2. The Cure
September 28, 1960
Emily Kendrick hires Josh to keep her beloved Harry from drinking himself to death, she has matrimony on her mind and with the arrival of Harry's brother for the wedding, she wants to make sure that all goes as planned.
The Trial
1. The Trial
September 21, 1960
Daniel Trenner is wanted for court martial because of his cowardice several men is his platoon lost their lives. Josh is after Trenner for other reasons and wants to stop the trial.
Where to Watch Wanted: Dead or Alive
Wanted: Dead or Alive is available for streaming on the CBS website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Wanted: Dead or Alive on demand at The Roku Channel Free, Tubi TV, Pluto TV and Plex.
  • Premiere Date
    September 6, 1958
  • IMDB Rating
    8.0  (2,727)