Michael Landon Found It Hard To Go On After Dan Blocker’s Tragic Death
YouTube / Bonanza-TheCartwrights4ever
The untimely death of a loved one can feel Earth-shattering, even for actors who seem superhuman, like Michael Landon…
The actor was close with Bonanza co-star Dan Blocker and took it especially hard when Blocker died suddenly before filming the show’s final season. While everyone on set had a tough time moving forward without Blocker, it was clear that he and Landon shared a bond that made it especially hard for Landon to say goodbye.
Landon’s normally jovial personality began to waver a bit after Blocker’s untimely passing.
Ken Howard, a fellow Bonanza star, recalled how tough it was for Landon to deliver a speech after the show wrapped. Of Landon’s speech, Howard said,
“What he was saying to this group, to this crew that had been together forever, was that we all know it’s not the same, and never will be.”
It was a tough decision to figure out how to manage Blocker’s death on the show. Ultimately, writers decided to honor what they thought Blocker would have wanted — to mention him in passing (the plot said Blocker died in an accident), without a long episode dedicated to his character.
Watch this emotional montage of clips featuring Dan Blocker on Bonanza (many with Michael Landon) below.