Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Save Longmire!

Troy D. Smith

I'm going to step away from my regularly scheduled topic to discuss something near and dear to my heart: the TV series Longmire, which just finished its third season (with a cliffhanger) and was then summarily canceled by A & E even though it is their second-highest show (behind Duck Dynasty.)

Are those people nuts, or what?

Actually, I think it's either A) a move toward having all their dramas produced in-house or B) a move to make room for more reality TV crap. Probably the latter, or a combination of the two.

For those who haven't been watching, the series is a contemporary crime drama set in the sheriff's department of the fictional Absaroka County, Wyoming, and the neighboring Cheyenne reservation. Sheriff Walt Longmire is very much a modern-day cowboy- my wife has pointed out that he is the most Matt Dillon-like character on television since Matt Dillon. Plots include reservation politics and intrigue, Walt's search for his wife's murderer, and the various personal problems of his deputies (one of whom ran unsuccessfully for sheriff against Walt last season.) It's based on the novels by Craig Johnson.

You can learn more about the show at this blog, 10 Reasons to Save Longmire

It would really be a shame to lose this show, so if you're a fan spread the word on social media. The best hope is that a different network will pick it up and continue the show- which seems like a no-brainer, but many of us thought the same thing when Deadwood was canceled by HBO at the end of its third season (also in the middle of a cliffhanger.)

Speaking of which, something occurred to me recently. Gerald McRaney (Major Dad, Simon and Simon) was the insidious villain involved in the closing cliffhangers of both Longmire and Deadwood. A little digging revealed he was also the last bad guy shot by Matt Dillon in the last (1975) episode of Gunsmoke. Marshal Matt Dillon, Marshal Seth Bullock, Sheriff Walt Longmire- is any Wild West lawman tough enough to bring this bird down without losing his show in the process? And what happened to the other Simon, did this guy kill him? Marshal Raylan Givens of Justified did manage to bring him down a couple of seasons ago, but McRaney had only been on a couple of episodes, maybe he didn't have time to build up his mojo. I'm just sayin'.

Anyway, if you haven't seen Longmire it's on Netlix, check it out. If you like westerns you'll like Longmire.


  1. By far one of the better offerings on television in the last three of four years. While based on the Johnson books it is a unique offering of its own.
    Who understands the workings of the network masterminds...that is what part of the mind they use. Doris

  2. I love this show and I'm sad and disappointed it has been cancelled.

  3. Are you sure about this? I thought someone is running ads about the next Longmire season launch.

  4. Insightful post, Troy. Thanks for ferreting out Gerald McRaney's history as a bad man. Excellent actor.

    Anonymous, please post a link or reference. Thanks.

  5. I, too, am baffled by the decision to cancel this show - I love the books and really enjoyed getting to meet the author at last year's Tony Hillerman Conference. At least we will have the pleasure of reading about Longmire if we can't see the TV show continue.

    Craig's Facebook page says that they're trying to shop the series around and find a new producer so they can continue the story.

  6. I love Longmire - although I was a little disheartened by that long story arc they were spinning out in the third season - as well as his blonde sidekick whom I find to be both whiny and irritating as far as sidekicks go :)

    I felt the GUNSMOKE vibe right from the first episode and thoroughly enjoyed following along through each season. I understand that there was a slight dip in the viewership during the third season but I am still surprised to see them cancelling it. Why the hell can't they at least turn it into a "Mystery Movie" type vehicle with about four movies a year instead of cancelling it completely?

  7. I loved this show from the beginning. Loved the scenery, the stories, the actors, the characters. What a pity that it fell victim to an 18-49 demographic and incompetents @ A&E. I just watched the last episode for the 4 or 5th time and it's so awesome. I'm going to miss it terribly if it's not picked up by another network. COME ON AMC, USA, TNT, FX -- SOMEONE step up. Just say NO to more crap reality show programming.

  8. Would love to see more of Longmire. Too bad fine shows such as this are being shunted away for reality shows which I abhore. Also miss western types with older men as the center pieces. Seems as if the younger generation is all TV cares about and they have the least amount of money to spend on things advertised. Makes no sense to me. KEITH

  9. Longmire definitely needs to be saved. Me and my daughter (11 years old) enjoy the show. A modern western that tells it like it is. I have no problem boycotting A&E over this. I will sign every petition I can find on the internet to save this show. Someone out there hear the fans of Longmire. Each year I personally promoted the show to friends and co-workers and everyone loved it. KAROL