I don’t know what it’s like to have the eyes of the ranger upon me, but if it’s anything like the sixth season of Walker, Texas Ranger, it’s probably hilarious.
The Chuck Norris-led western police action series made its debut on CBS back in 1993 with three pilot episodes that introduced fans to Cordell Walker (Norris) of the Texas Rangers. Infused with plenty of action, moral values, martial arts, and good old-fashioned Texas justice, Walker, Texas Ranger took on a significant following with broadcast in over 100 countries.
The show ran through eight full seasons (plus the three-episode pilot season) of roundhouse kicks, morality, and Norris’ unblinking uprightness. Thanks in large part to Conan O’Brien’s random Walker, Texas Ranger lever, the legendary Chuck Norris jokes, and the series’ natural camp appeal, fans young and old are flocking to enjoy it all over again on DVD.
The sixth season finds Walker picking up where the end of the fifth season left off in true cliffhanger fashion. In “The Wedding Part 2,” he’s on the trail of the iniquitous Storm after he injured Alex (Sheree J. Wilson) at a wedding ceremony.
After closing up shop on the cliffhanger, the season rolls down the usual avenues and presents stories of Satanists gone wild (“The Children of Halloween”), Mormons in need of protection (“Paradise Trail”), a Cherokee racing team (“Team Cherokee Part 1 & 2”), and a crazy son of a minister (“Power Angels”).
Each episode has the Walker, Texas Ranger stamp of approval, concluding with a rapid-fire roundhouse boot to the face of the scoundrel, a droll riposte, and a breakdown of the show’s message and/or final comedic moment at C.D’s bar. While, for many, the expectedness of Walker might be yawn-inducing, for others it can be a soft comfort in a world of television shows stretching to try new things.
Perhaps the best episode of the sixth season fully utilizes all of the elements of what makes a great Walker, Texas Ranger episode. In “The Principal,” Walker and his partner Trivette (Clarence Gilyard) go undercover at a local high school after the former principal is killed by a drug-dealing teacher in front of a group of students. Walker takes charge of the school with his mission geared towards changing the lives of the students and he dispatches the Power Team to do it. The muscleheads break cinder blocks and bend things, getting the kids off of drugs and leading to the eventual “roundhousing” of the drug-dealing teacher just in the nick of time.
So whether he’s kicking butt, taking names, making an appearance whenever someone opens a can of whoop-ass, shaking his bearded head at current events, or simply defending the sanctity of marriage, we can always count on Chuck Norris to bring it home like nobody else.
For a solid dose of '90s action, adventure, and more inadvertent moments of camp comedy than most others shows on television, Walker, Texas Ranger is a damn good place to start.
The DVD set features all 23 episodes of the sixth season on 5 discs with no bonus features because Walker doesn't roll like that.