Most of the criticism brought to Walker, Texas Ranger relies on only one thing: that the series is too formulaic and that each episode is molded after the same matrix. But where other see repetitiveness I see a formula for a great show, where others see boredom I see purpose.
As said in one of my previous articles, Walker, Texas Ranger wasn’t meant to be what has become a standard detective series, about gathering clues as to who did the deed. In addition to that, I can also say that one of the most important aspects of the show was that the negative characters were very well defined.
There was no room for a grey area, in which the viewer could empathize with the baddie of the episode (this happens a lot nowadays, each negative character is given a motive which compels the viewer to feel for him). Things were clearer in the show – we have the good guys, we have the bad guys: what to do with them?
It can be said, from a certain point of view, that Walker, Texas Ranger lacked the depth and the political correctness which (in my opinion) plagues us nowadays. But then again the best key to success is keeping things simple. You don’t need to have an over-burdened plot with several or more side-stories in order to make a series become successful.
So yes, each episode may follow the same line, in which somebody crosses Walker or his principles, followed by the reveal of the evil plans, followed by the standoff, ending with the conclusion which states that good will always prevail in the fight against evil.
But what else do you need for a great show? Walker, Texas Ranger is one of the more traditional series, in which the morals are well defined and which follows the traditional storyline of, for example, the old westerns.
In other words, there was nothing blurred when it comes to morals and the ending of the show came like a reassurance that truth and justice will always be triumphant.
As said, this was the perfect recipe for success, Walker, Texas Ranger dominating its time slot from the first season. And yes, the times have changed since then, but we will always need to be reminded that strong principles are everything that we need in our life.
Walker, Texas Ranger isn’t a call to return to more traditional moral values. It is what it is: a successful series based on a simple premise – and that is where the entertainment can be found.