Sitcoms thrive on classic "fish out of water" situations. Perhaps that's why we so often see shows that have nothing to do with the Old West do a one-off episode where the characters are suddenly thrust into a Western setting. Sometimes funny, sometimes scary, these episodes are always entertaining.
In the episode "High Noon-ish," Lassiter asks Shawn and Gus to investigate a murder that took place in an Old West-style theme park. In true Shawn and Gus fashion, the boys get all decked out in period costumes and start playing sheriff. And for fans of the classic Mel Brooks comedy "Blazing Saddles," there are homages a-plenty. The boys get all hopped up on cactus juice, and Gus dresses as a blacksmith. What could be better?
In the fragmented, faux-clip show episode "Paradigms of Human Memory," we get glimpses of a day spent in a Wild West theme park. But for pure spaghetti western flair, there's no episode better than "A Fistful of Paintballs."
The first episode of the second season's two-part finale, it draws thematic and stylistic elements from the films of Sergio Leone. Troy's costume, however, is based off what Bart wears in "Blazing Saddles." And of course, there's the Black Rider, played by Josh Holloway.
In the classic 1966 serial "The Gunfighters," the Doctor and his sidekicks travel back in time visiting the American West. The only problem? They show up just before the gunfight at the O.K. Corral.
The third episode of the upcoming seventh series will feature an Old West adventure, part of which was filmed in Spain. The episode will guest star sci-fi veteran Ben Browder.
The third season premiere of "Modern Family, entitled "Dude Ranch," sees the families traveling to Wyoming. The episode is notable for Dylan's proposal to Haley, his subsequent rejection, and him getting a job at the ranch. Oh yeah, and Luke blows up a birdhouse with a firecracker.
Granted, the Enterprise crew doesn't spend any of this episode in the actual American West, but "A Fistful of Datas" does feature a holodeck adventure with saloons, banditos, and gunfights. When the holodeck malfunctions, a bunch of the holocharacters start shooting real bullets (and looking like Data the android).
The Simpson family leaves Springfield behind for a dude ranch in the appropriately named fourteenth season episode "Dude, Where's My Ranch?" Perhaps best remembered as the episode with the song "Everybody Hates Ned Flanders," the family leaves town after the song becomes so popular that it gets round-the-clock airplay. They head to a remote dude ranch where Lisa meets a handsome cowhand named Luke.