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Title Card - BRANDED

NBC Network
30 Minutes

The military drama BRANDED/NBC/1965-66 starred Chuck Connors as Jason McCord, a Cavalry officer and West Point graduate who was unjustly "branded" a coward and dismissed from the service.

Wandering the Old West of the 1880s, McCord tried to live down the false allegation that he deserted his troops at the Battle of Cripple Creek. In reality, McCord was attacked and rendered unconscious.

When he awoke, McCord found all of his fellow soldiers killed. But, the military court martial conducted by a Cavalry colonel (John Howard) disbelieved his sole survivor story, and labeled him a coward. To protect the honor of his now dead commanding officer, McCord never revealed the massacre was due to that officer's blunder. 

For his alleged desertion in the face of fire, McCord was drummed out of the service. This included the humiliation of having his hat, Captain's rank, and buttons ripped from his uniform in front of the presiding troops and his sword snapped in half and thrown out of the fort into the dirt.

As McCord exited the fort, the stockade gates were closed behind him in a final act of banishment. After bending down to retrieve his sword, Jason stood erect, surveyed the horizon and contemplated where he would go, and what he would do with the rest of his life. One thing for sure, Jason would try his best to prove his innocence and restore his reputation.

Jason used his training in engineering and mapmaking to find employment. But, where ever he traveled, there was always someone who knew his secret and voiced their opinion on his disgrace.

Chuck Connors as Jason McCord - BRANDED
Jason McCord

Listen to Theme Song

Theme Song Lyrics

All but one man died,
There at Bitter Creek,
And they say he ran away ...

Marked with a coward's shame.
What do you do when you're branded,
Will you fight for your name?

He was innocent,
Not a charge was true,
But the world would never know ...

Scorned as the one who ran.
What do you do when you're branded,
And you know you're a man?

Wherever you go
for the rest of your life
You must prove ...
You're a man!

TRIVIA NOTE: Born in Brooklyn, NY on April 10, 1921, Chuck Connors died of lung cancer and pneumonia on November 10, 1992. Earlier in his career, Connors starred in the classic western series THE RIFLEMAN/ABC/1958-63.

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