In their second episode devoted to the classical Hollywood genres, Ryan and Todd explore the western by focusing on some of the most popular and some of the most theoretically compelling. They discuss directors John Ford, Howard Hawks, and Anthony Mann, as well as devoting time to the western 3:10 to Yuma. Their theorization of the western stresses the way that the genre lays out the social antagonism between law and lawlessness, in which the western hero functions as a vanishing mediator.

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