Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Cowboys and Lawmen Blog Hop: My Love Affair with Lonesome Dove


Welcome to the Cowboys and Lawmen Blog Hop!

Join nearly 50 authors as we share why we love Cowboys and Lawmen. Cowboys are known as bad-boys, but what happens when the bad-boy is also the law in town? What is it about these contradictions that make small town sheriffs, Texas Rangers and ex-outlaws-turned-lawmen so irresistible? Whether you write or love to read about the Wild West or modern day Montana, what do you love most about lawmen who are also cowboys? And what makes them so gosh-darn sexy?

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When I think of Texas Rangers, I instantly think of Lonesome Dove. It's hard to believe I've never read the Pulitzer prize winning novel by Larry McMurtry, but I've watched the Emmy award winning mini-series countless times and consider it one of my all-time favorites. This classic has spawned prequels, sequels, and TV series, but nothing compares to the original masterpiece.


The Story: In 1876, Captain  Augustus "Gus" McCrae and Captain Woodrow F. Call, two famous ex–Texas Rangers, run a livery called the Hat Creek Cattle Company and Livery Emporium in the small dusty Texas border town of Lonesome Dove. Smooth, charming and easy going, Gus loves women and women return the sentiments, but he's twice a widower and he never marries the love of his life, Clara. Although he had proposed many a time, she had rejected him every time because, in her words, Gus is "a rambler," and she despises Call because she feels jealous of the years Gus spent with him instead of her. She needed to settle down and have a family and a good life; he was brave and a dead aim, but was lazy and prone to wandering away for another adventure.

While McCrae is warm, good natured, and understanding of people, Captain Call, Gus's best friend and partner, is the opposite: a workaholic taskmaster who hides in his work, emotionally cut off. He is afraid "to admit he's human," according to McCrae. He loved only one woman, a prostitute named Maggie, who gave birth to his only son, Newt. Though he knows he is his bastard son's father, he refuses to admit it and give Newt his name. He is hypercompetent at his work to compensate for his complete failure at human relationships. He is cold and driven by pride and honor, not love. Even when he drags the body of the only human who ever understood him and loved him anyway over 2000 miles across the Great Plains, suffering ridicule and hardship, he claims he is doing it for duty, not friendship.

My favorite character is Lorena, the reluctant prostitute desperately in love with Gus who aches to leave Lonesome Dove and make her way to San Francisco. My heart breaks every time during the scene where she stands with Gus's coffin all night, clutching the last letter he wrote her that she's unable to read, and says, "They'll all forget you Gus, but I won't. Whether it comes morning or night I'll think of you. They can forget, but I won't. Never, Gus."

My favorite scene is at the very end when Call returns to Lonesome Dove and a reporter approaches; gruff Call is reluctant to speak with him. He says that Call is a man of vision to which Call replies, "Yeah, a hell of a vision." Then that hauntingly beautiful music plays in the background as footage of each character is shown one last time.

Have you read or watched Lonesome Dove? Who is your favorite character? What's your favorite scene? 


11 comments:

  1. Favorite character is Woodrow Call, don't really have a favorite scene, loved everything about that show.
    skpetal at hotmail dot com

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  2. I didn't watch Lonesome Dove. So I can't really answer the question. :) I always thought it sounded good. kmnbooks at yahoo dot com

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  3. I have never seen that show. Hubby loves it though. I didn't realize there was a book too. Thanks for being part of the blog hop.
    Sue B
    katsrus(at)gmail(dot)com

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  4. I love westerns because my interest in them started with watching Bonanza with my grandfather before I could even read---so just wonderful childhood memories.
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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  5. I both read and saw all of the Lonesome Dove series and thought it was all magnificent. I can't say I had a favorite scene because I loved every minute I was reading or seeing the mini-series. My fave character was Gus, because he was so much more vocal than the others. It was like he was the one telling the story...living the story. They certainly selected the best actor to be Gus in the TV movie...a man of few words but you could well understand what he was feeling and thinking. Thanks for asking, Melissa! jdh2690@gmail.com

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  6. I haven't read or seen Lonesome Dove :(
    sugerlady@aol.com

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  7. Haven´t read or watch, sorry to say, but I´m a sucker for a cowboy *yeehaw* =D
    Happy Ssturday!
    //Linda

    fr_larsson at hotmail dot com

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  8. I haven't read or watched Lonesome Dove.

    Kit3247(at)aol(dot)com

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  9. I've only seen parts of the show so I don't have a favorite character or scene.
    sstrode at scrtc dot com

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  10. I always loved Gabby Hayes and Randolph Scott movies. Now , Tom Selleck made an awesome cowboy in Quigley Down Under. I really am curious to see who they pick to play the Lone Ranger and Tonto if they really do remake that one.


    cmucha319(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  11. I have actually never seen or heard of it. Terrible, i know! Ill definitely be looking it up later! Thank for sharing and being apart of this awesome hop!
    shadowluvs2read(at)gmail(dot)com

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