Lightnin' Bill Carson (1936) starring Tim McCoy, Lois January, Rex Lease, Harry Worth, Karl Hackett, John Merton, Joseph W. Girard, Lafe McKee directed by Sam Newfield Movie Review

Lightnin' Bill Carson (1936)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Tim McCoy in Lightnin' Bill Carson (1936)

The Convoluted Bill Carson

When Stack Stone's (Karl Hackett) men rob the stage Dep. Sam Bates (Edmund Cobb) manages to catch Breed Hawkins (John Merton) but only ends up being one of Hawkins' victims. Looking fore a scapegoat Stone convinces the drunken Pecos Kid (Rex Lease) that it was him who killed the deputy where western law takes over and the Kid is hung for his crime. Unfortunately it is not until later that Marshal Lightnin' Bill Carson (Tim McCoy) discovers the truth that it was Breed who killed the deputy. But things have already started to spiral out of control as the Kid's brother seeking revenge kills the Sheriff and his posse forcing Bill to confront him.

Well I will say one thing for "Lightnin' Bill Carson" it certainly has a lot more storyline than you normally get from one of these 1930s westerns, it also has more Aces than you tend to see in movies as well. But whilst the plot certainly makes "Lightnin' Bill Carson" interesting it also makes it convoluted. When you try to imagine what people thought about it in 1936, and by people I mean the kids who flocked to the flicks on a Saturday morning to watch a western, I would imagine they found it had too much going on.

The sad thing is that once you get passed the twisting plot all you have left is a typical 1930s western which features stiff actors delivering unrealistic dialogue and lots of static camera work. It also features the familiar faces of Tim McCoy and Rex Lease playing the sort of characters they played in all of these old westerns.

What this all boils down to is that "Lightnin' Bill Carson" is more interesting than most 1930s westerns as it has more of a storyline than most. But at the same time it is also typically generic when it comes to the characters and look which makes it one for western buffs rather than general western fans.