Oren W. Haglund (Production manager)
Gordon Bau (make-up)
Robert B. Warwick
Warner Bros. Television
October 4, 1959 (1959-10-04) – June 19,
Appears to have
shared scripts but
not characters or
The Alaskans was a 1959–1960 ABC/
Warner Brothers western television
series set during the late 1890s in the port of Skagway, Alaska. The
Roger Moore as "Silky Harris" and
Jeff York as "Reno
McKee", a pair of adventurers intent on swindling travelers bound for
Yukon Territories during the height of the Klondike Gold Rush.
Their plans are inevitably complicated by the presence of singer
"Rocky Shaw" (Dorothy Provine), "an entertainer with a taste for the
finer things in life".
The show was the first regular work on American television for the
British actor Roger Moore.
1 Relationship with Maverick
2 Roger Moore's views
4 Guest stars
6 External links
Relationship with Maverick
The Alaskans is closely related to the ABC/WB series Maverick through
broadcast and production. Maverick was the most prominent of ABC's
Sunday night of western dramas. For the 1959–60 season, Sundays
began with Colt .45 and Maverick, then John Russell's Lawman and Nick
Adams' The Rebel, and concluded with The Alaskans.
This may have influenced the career path of Roger Moore. The same year
The Alaskans was canceled,
James Garner left Maverick. Moore
became, under protest, Garner's replacement, playing Bret
Maverick's cousin Beau Maverick in the fourth season of Maverick.
The Alaskans were also related through script, if not
narrative. The two shows were not part of the same fictional world, as
evidenced by a lack of crossovers between the two. Because of the 1960
Writers Guild of America strike as well as an ongoing Warner Bros.
policy to save money on writers, however,
The Alaskans inherited a
certain amount of scripted material from Maverick. Moore bristled at
the lack of originality in scripts: "An old Bronco script would
interchange with an Alaskans or Maverick. In some cases, even the
dialogue stayed unchanged." In 2007, Moore noted, "Quite often I
realized that we were filming Maverick scripts, with the names
changed." This made it simple for
Jack L. Warner
Jack L. Warner to envision Moore
as Maverick, since Moore had literally delivered Garner's dialogue
while reshooting the same scripts with different names and locales.
Since the show has not been available to home audiences for more than
forty years, independent verification of either claim is difficult.
The Alaskans may have drawn from other series as well. One
viewer has detailed which specific Maverick,
Sugarfoot and Cheyenne
episodes spawned clones on The Alaskans. Cannibalizing scripts was
standard operating procedure at Warner Bros. television. Their first
big hit in the detective genre, 77 Sunset Strip, was copied in
analogous series such as Bourbon Street Beat, Surfside Six, and
Hawaiian Eye, with only the locations changed –
Los Angeles to New
Orleans, Miami Beach, and Hawaii. The basic characters were identical
with only the character parts which spoke in jargon being re-written
e.g. horse racing tout to jazz slang. This pre-dated the troubles with
the Writers Guild. 
Roger Moore's views
For Roger Moore, the series is memorable for being "my most appalling
television series ever". In particular, he found that attempting to
recreate Alaskan exteriors on a studio backlot in
California made for
disagreeably hot work days. The show also caused some marital
strife for the actor when he had to admit to wife
Dorothy Squires that
he had fallen in love with co-star Dorothy Provine.
Roger Moore as Silky Harris
Dorothy Provine as Rocky Shaw
Jeff York as Reno McKee
Ray Danton as Nifty Cronin
John Dehner in two episodes each as Cornish and Soapy Smith
Alan Hale, Jr.
I. Stanford Jolley
Harold J. Stone
Lee Van Cleef
Efrem Zimbalist, Jr.
^ Roger Moore's official site
^ Classic TV Themes entry for The Alaskans
^ Classic TV Archive entry on The Alaskans
^ Episode World's synopsis of The Alaskans
The Alaskans at TVDays.com
^ The Rebel at tvobscurities.com
^ a b c http://www.roger-moore.com/roger-moore-charity13.htm Moore,
Roger and Ken Roche. "The
Roger Moore Story". TV Times Extra.
Independent Publications, Ltd. 1972.
^ Moore answer to a June 2007 question on his official website
^ WBTV Posse forum thread, giving parent episodes on other programs
and their children on The Alaskans. Free registration required to
^ http://www.roger-moore.com/roger-moore-charity12.htm Moore, Roger
and Ken Roche. "The
Roger Moore Story". TV Times Extra. Independent
Publications, Ltd. 1972.
The Alaskans on IMDb
The Alaskans at TV.com
William T. Orr television shows
Warner Bros. Presents
77 Sunset Strip
Bourbon Street Beat
The Bugs Bunny Show
The Roaring 20's
Room for One More
The Gallant Men
No Time for Sergeants
Wendy and Me