Tuesday, October 18, 2011

HELL ON WHEELS--the Western is back!

by Celia Yeary
The construction of the first American transcontinental railroad is a familiar story we learned in high school history.
The tracks were laid from Sacramento, California to Council Bluffs, Iowa during the years of 1863 to 1869. The Union Pacific laid down 1,087 miles of track, starting in Council Bluffs, Iowa and moved west. The Central Pacific laid down 690 miles of track, starting in Sacramento, California. After many problems and battles, the two sections finally met at Promontory Summit in the Utah Territory.
Irish laborers, veterans of both the Union and Confederate armies, and Mormons, and emancipated slaves laid down the eastern section, while Chinese immigrants performed most of the work on the western section.
Using the history of this railroad, AMC has filmed a new western series titled Hell on Wheels. The premiere is Sunday, November 6 at 10/9c.
Hell on Wheels tells the epic story of post-Civil War America, focusing on a Confederate soldier, Cullen Bohannon, who sets out to exact revenge on the Union soldiers who killed his wife. His journey and quest for vengeance takes him west to Hell on Wheels, a dangerous, raucous, melting-pot of a town that travels with and services the construction of the first trans-continental railroad. Bohannon is played by Anson Mount.
Elam Fergerson is an emancipated slave, half black, half white. Elam and Cullen's fates are bound together during the building of the railroad. Elam is played by Common.


Lily Bell is a newly widowed woman trying to survive in a man's world. She worries that the approaching railroad will despoil the West forever. Lily is played by Dominique McElligott.

  
The series documents the engineering and construction of the railroad, as well as institutionalized greed and corruption, the immigrant experience, and the plight of the newly emancipated African-Americans during Reconstruction.
Hell on Wheels chronicles this turning point in our nation's history and how uncivilized the business of civilization can be.
     Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas  
http://www.celiayeary.blogspot.com http://www.celiayeary.com

27 comments:

  1. Hi Celia,
    I saw previews for this series and thought it might help to bring back westerns. I've tried to submit stories to NY agents/publishers, but they say no to westerns.

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  2. I've been counting the days since I first heard of the series back in August! Can't wait. Tho' we'll have to see if this persuades NY people still love and want westerns. I hoped TRUE GRIT being such a big hit would be a light bulb moment for them but .....
    Thanks for sharing, Celia!

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  3. Celia, it sounds like a really interesting series. I find the cable channels usually do a great job with new series like this. If you like westerns, I think this one will keep people hanging around.

    Smiles
    Steph

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  4. I saw the previews during The Walking Dead, and was pumped to see it coming on. I love a good Western and can't wait to see how they handle it.

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  5. I grip the edge of my seat every time they advertise this series. Can't wait to watch it!
    Great post!

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  6. I've seen ads but now previews. Thanks for all the details; now I can't wait for the series!

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  7. I haven't heard of this series...so thanks for sharing. From the trailers and your blog it sounds like they did a nice job making it. I'll have to tune in.

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  8. Great information about the new series, Celia. I saw the previews and plan on watching it. wouldn't it be great if westerns came back to TV? I'm sick of reality shows. A good western series would be such a welcome change.

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  9. It would be great to have westerns come back again. I don't get HBO so won't get to see it. :(

    'They' keep saying 'they' are buying westerns now. That they are really looking for westerns. It is so confusing as to what 'they' are really looking for. :)

    I have been to the train museum in Old Sacramento and all that history is great. It was a lot of hard work to get all those tracks laid. Now we see states ripping them up. Confusing!

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  10. Great blog, Celia. Great promo for Westerns. There is something about the long, tall cowboys in ten gallon hats, isn't there? You are in the right genre at the right time, I think. Linda

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  11. How cool, Celia. I enjoyed the photos, the info, and the trailer. Love live Westerns!!!

    Maggie Toussaint
    ON THE NICKEL

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  12. Kathy and Jennifer--yes! Bring back the Western--anything! True Grit had too much emotional baggage, don't you think? This western is all new--not attached to John Wayne--yes, I had hoped, too...but it was not the right one. As I understand it, there are several Westerns to debut later--I just hope they're "pure" and not connected with vampires or some such thing...just Westerners. Thanks for your comment-

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  13. Steph--I know you're not a Western fan--so I especially appreciate your comment.

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  14. J. and Lauri--nor can I wait--you can tell how excited I am. I hope we're not disappointed.

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  15. Alison and Christine--yes...we're all waiting.

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  16. Sarah--I'm sick of reality show, too. I don't watch them, so that leaves me with very little to choose from!

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  17. Paisley--I've been interested in that railroad a long time. It'll be interesting to see what AMC does with it.

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  18. M. J., Maggie, and Linda--such good friends you are--some of us are more excited than others--like M.J. for instance. So...let it begin so we can see.

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  19. I can hardly wait to see this. I hope it recreates interest in the West for our books!

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  20. This looks fabulous. I love westerns: in print & on screen.

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  21. Celia, thanks for sharing this. I had no clue. I hope Westerns do a make a return, as in being a good force in our world.

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  22. Caroline and Marybelle--I hope it's as good as it looks--sometimes you never know.

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  23. Savanna--that's why westerns and Western Romance are so loved by some-a wrong is always righted--by the good guy, the cowboy. Thanks for commenting.

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  24. Celia,
    This looks GREAT! I can't wait. Maybe it's something that I can get the hubby to watch too--I watch all those NCIS shows with him, so he should get interested in this one for me! LOL Anyhow, I, too, have tried to submit westerns to NY and they aren't interested--at least not in western romance. Some are interested in the straight ol' western genre, but even that is hard to come by. It's more western with a tiny bit of sex thrown in--they call them "adult westerns." Yeah. Anyhow, thanks for posting the trailer--that is really looking like it's going to be a fabulous show.
    Cheryl

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  25. Cheryl--I hope it's good. AMC can do some good things, and then there's the Walking Dead thing. Ewwww. Who wants that? Oh, I'm sure there are lots of viewers--maybe they'll see Hell on Wheels and be a convert.

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  26. Sounds great! We'll watch the show when it comes out on DVD because we don't get that channel. And anyway, I wouldn't want to hex it because if I like it, they'll cancel it after the first season. Sigh.

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