The Restless Gun is a western television series that appeared on NBC between 1957 and 1959, with John Payne, a Virginia native, in the role of Vint Bonner, a wandering cowboy in the era after the American Civil War. A skilled gunfighter, Bonner is an idealistic person who prefers peaceful resolutions of conflict wherever possible. He is gregarious, intelligent, and public-spirited. The half-hour black-and-white program aired seventy-eight episodes. Jeanne Bates appeared in varying roles with Payne in five episodes of The Restless Gun.


  • Alan W. Livingston of NBC hired David Dortort to write the screenplay for the pilot episode of Bonanza. He did it at night, while producing The Restless Gun by day.
  • Michael Landon appeared in a supporting role in the pilot for The Restless Gun that aired on March 19, 1957.
  • Dan Blocker played multiple roles in The Restless Gun in the first season.
  • Edward Ludwig was also one of the directors of The Restless Gun (1957-1959).
  • Jeanne Bates played in 5 episodes.

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