Action The Best 1950s Action TV Series  

Ranker TV
429 votes 164 voters 1.8k views 25 items

List Rules Vote up your favorite action series that aired on TV in the '50s

This group of the best 1950s Action TV series, ranked from best to worst by user votes, is full of television trendsetters. I mean, it's the 1950s, so these shows really laid the groundwork for the entire artistic medium of TV.  These great 50s action shows fall right in line with the old aesthetic of a Hollywood hero in the same vein as John Wayne. This was when the "manly man" was king. Good 1950s action shows were almost exclusively Westerns, but crime dramas and even superhero shows started to creep in to the zeitgeist. So, what are the greatest 1950s action TV series?

What shows will you find on this top 1950s action TV shows list? Bonanza, of course. This great 50s action show premiered back in 1959. Gunsmoke is another good action series that aired in the 1950s as is The Adventures of Robin Hood.

“It's a bird. It's a plane.” It's the Adventures of Superman. This action series ran on ABC from 1952 through 1958. Other top shows that appear on this list of good 50s action TV shows include Maverick, The Lone Ranger and The Rifleman.

Do you have a favorite action show from the 1950s? Vote the best series up to the top of this list and join in on the discussion in the comments section.
list ordered by

1
35 5
The Lone Ranger is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Jay Silverheels, Clayton Moore, John Hart Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial The Lone Ranger is the central character of an American animated television series that ran 26 episodes on CBS from September 10, 1966, to September 6, 1969. The series was produced by Herb ...more

2
28 4
Bonanza is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Lorne Greene, Michael Landon, Dan Blocker Watch for Free with Amazon Prime Free Trial Bonanza is an NBC television western series that ran from September 12, 1959, to January 16, 1973. Lasting 14 seasons and 430 episodes, it ranks as the second longest running western series, and ...more

3
21 4
Gunsmoke is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
James Arness, Milburn Stone, Amanda Blake Gunsmoke is an American radio and television Western drama series created by director Norman Macdonnell and writer John Meston. The stories take place in and around Dodge City, Kansas, during ...more

4
21 4
Maverick is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Jack Kelly, James Garner, Roger Moore Maverick is an American Western television series with comedic overtones created by Roy Huggins. The show ran from September 22, 1957 to July 8, 1962 on ABC and stars James Garner as Bret ...more

5
19 4
The Rifleman is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Chuck Connors, Johnny Crawford, Paul Fix The Rifleman is an American Western television program starring Chuck Connors as rancher Lucas McCain and Johnny Crawford as his son, Mark McCain. It was set in the 1870s and 1880s in the town ...more

6
23 8
Adventures of Superman is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
George Reeves, Noel Neill, Bill Kennedy Adventures of Superman is an American television series based on comic book characters and concepts created in 1938 by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. The show is the first television series to ...more

7
19 6
Have Gun – Will Travel is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Richard Boone, Kam Tong, Hal Needham Have Gun – Will Travel is an American Western television series that aired on CBS from 1957 through 1963. It was rated number three or number four in the Nielsen ratings every year of its first ...more

8
15 4
Wagon Train is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Frank McGrath, Terry Wilson, Robert Horton Wagon Train is an American Western series that ran on NBC 1957–62 and then on ABC 1962–65, although the network also aired daytime repeats, as Major Adams, Trailmaster and Trailmaster, from ...more

9
15 4
Davy Crockett is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Fess Parker, Buddy Ebsen, Kenneth Tobey Davy Crockett is a five-part serial which aired on ABC in one-hour episodes on the Disneyland series. The series stars Fess Parker as real-life frontiersman Davy Crockett and Buddy Ebsen as his ...more

10
13 3
Zorro is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Guy Williams, Gene Sheldon, George J. Lewis Zorro is an American action-adventure western drama series produced by Walt Disney Productions. Based on the well-known Zorro character, the series premiered on October 10, 1957 on ABC. The ...more

11
14 4
The Adventures of Robin Hood is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Donald Pleasence, Ian Hunter, Paul Eddington The Adventures of Robin Hood is a British television series comprising 143 half-hour, black and white episodes broadcast weekly between 1955 and 1959 on ITV. It stars Richard Greene as the ...more

12
12 3
Cheyenne is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Clint Walker, Russ McCubbin Cheyenne is an American western television series of 108 black-and-white episodes broadcast on ABC from 1955 to 1963. The show was the first hour-long western, and in fact the first hour-long ...more

13
9 1
The Adventures of Wild Bill Hi... is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Andy Devine, Guy Madison The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok is an American Western television series which ran for eight seasons from 1951 through 1958. The Screen Gems series began in syndication, but ran on CBS from ...more

14
15 7
Rawhide is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Clint Eastwood, John Ireland, Charles Gray Rawhide is an American Western TV series starring Eric Fleming and Clint Eastwood that aired for eight seasons on the CBS network on Friday nights, from January 9, 1959 to September 3, 1965, ...more

15
8 3
The Life and Legend of Wyatt E... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
John Anderson, Hugh O'Brian, Denver Pyle The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp was the first western television series written for adults, premiering four days before Gunsmoke on September 6, 1955. It is loosely based on the life of ...more

16
9 4
Sea Hunt is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Lloyd Bridges, Ron Ely Sea Hunt is an American adventure television series that aired in syndication from 1958 to 1961 and was popular in syndication for decades afterwards. The series originally aired for four ...more

17
10 6
The Cisco Kid is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Leo Carrillo, Duncan Renaldo The Cisco Kid is a half-hour American Western television series starring Duncan Renaldo in the title role, The Cisco Kid, and Leo Carrillo as the jovial sidekick, Pancho. Cisco and Pancho were ...more

18
8 4
Bat Masterson is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Gene Barry Bat Masterson is an American Western television series which showed a fictionalized account of the life of real-life marshal/gambler/dandy Bat Masterson. The title character was played by Gene ...more

19
5 2
The Buccaneers is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Robert Shaw, Peter Hammond, Brian Rawlinson The Buccaneers was a 1956 Sapphire Films television drama series for ITC Entertainment, networked by CBS in the US and shown on ATV and regional ITV companies as they came on air during the ...more

20
9 7
Adventures in Paradise is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Gardner McKay, James Holden, Lani Kai Adventures in Paradise is an American television series created by James Michener which ran on ABC from 1959 until 1962, starring Gardner McKay as Adam Troy, the captain of the schooner Tiki ...more

21
4 2
Tales of the 77th Bengal Lance... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Philip Carey, Warren Stevens, Patrick Whyte Tales of the 77th Bengal Lancers is a television series broadcast in the United States by NBC during its 1956-57 season. In a period in which much of the programming on U.S. television consisted ...more

22
4 3
Ivanhoe is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Ivanhoe Roger Moore, Peter Gilmore, Andrew Keir Ivanhoe is a British television series first shown on ITV in 1958-59. The show features Roger Moore in his first starring role, as Sir Wilfred of Ivanhoe, in a series of adventures aimed at a ...more

23
4 3
H.G. Wells' Invisible Man is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Deborah Watling, Tim Turner, Lisa Daniely

24
4 4
Public Defender is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Natalie Wood, Patrick O'Neal, Reed Hadley The Public Defender is a half-hour 69-episode television dramatic series starring Reed Hadley as Bart Matthews, an attorney for the indigent. The series aired on CBS from March 11, 1954 to June ...more

25
3 3
Hawkeye and the Last of the Mo... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best 1950s Action TV Series
Hawkeye and the Last of the Mohicans Lon Chaney, Jr., John Hart The Last of the Mohicans, later retitled Hawkeye and the Last of the Mohicans is a 1957 Western television series made for syndication by ITC Entertainment and Normandie Productions. It ran for ...more