• Network: PBS
  • Series Premiere Date: May 1, 2006
User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 43 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 43
  2. Negative: 7 out of 43

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  1. JonP
    Oct 21, 2006
    4
    I know PBS purposefully chooses personalities that will clash and add an extra dimension of drama to these shows, but I would have enjoyed Texas Ranch House a thousand times more if they would have replaced the entire Cooke family. What an imbecilic, self-absorbed, and thoroughly worthless family!! Could have been another excellent show, but not with the Cookes on it!
  2. TimM
    Oct 17, 2006
    7
    Just saw this on DVD not when it originally aired, but for the most part was interesting. I agree with the others that the women on the show were not "playing" by the rules of 1867. Mrs. Cooke with her superior attitude was too much to take. You can tell she never raised sons because she had no idea what and how much men eat. She would have been better cast in a Manor House where she Just saw this on DVD not when it originally aired, but for the most part was interesting. I agree with the others that the women on the show were not "playing" by the rules of 1867. Mrs. Cooke with her superior attitude was too much to take. You can tell she never raised sons because she had no idea what and how much men eat. She would have been better cast in a Manor House where she could be the Queen. I feel bad for Mr. Cooke beause men that are in these all female households tend to become one of the girls. Expand
  3. kenth
    Aug 26, 2006
    5
    I agree with most others, and the historiacl assessment by the experts. Mrs. Cooke was the worst problem followed by Mr. Cooke. Other than not respecting the women (chivalry), the ranch hands were goodl.
  4. DedeB
    Jul 13, 2006
    1
    I watched only one episode, the one where the ranch hands got reamed & Moira was sent to train for the ride. I was so appalled by the actions & behavior of the Cooke family that I will not watch anything else. I grew up in the Northwest & my grandparents & their parents were true ranch families. I believe the Cooke family forgot the purpose of the show, it was to be lifestyle of the I watched only one episode, the one where the ranch hands got reamed & Moira was sent to train for the ride. I was so appalled by the actions & behavior of the Cooke family that I will not watch anything else. I grew up in the Northwest & my grandparents & their parents were true ranch families. I believe the Cooke family forgot the purpose of the show, it was to be lifestyle of the 1860's! The women were thinking & behaving like they were in the 21st century. Mr. Cooke at times seemed to get a glimpse of the purpose of the show, but his wife would not let up on him. I am all for equalness among the sexes & stand up for these beliefs today, but this show was based in the 1860's! I applaud the cowboys for staying true to the cowboy rules, even when the ranch owners were so ignorant! They truly took the high road & led by example. This was the only good thing in the whole show. Expand
  5. AnthonyC
    Jun 19, 2006
    0
    stinks
  6. CE
    Jun 14, 2006
    5
    hmmmm... The show could have been so much more if a family other than the Cooke's had been cast. It is unclear why they would have volunteered for such a thing when none of them seemed to have the least interest in living an authentic nineteenth century experience. Mr. & Mrs. Cooke were interesting from a pure character standpoint - a woman and her wuss. Mr. Cooke is like a microcosm hmmmm... The show could have been so much more if a family other than the Cooke's had been cast. It is unclear why they would have volunteered for such a thing when none of them seemed to have the least interest in living an authentic nineteenth century experience. Mr. & Mrs. Cooke were interesting from a pure character standpoint - a woman and her wuss. Mr. Cooke is like a microcosm of all I find insufferable about modern man and Mrs. Cooke is simply a shrew. To each her/his own. The rest of the cast was enjoyable. I actually liked Moira and felt for her having to be trapped in the house with the Cookes. I think that was her real crises but since everyone in the bunkhouse was male it was turned into a 'battle of the sexes' storyline. I am glad she got to ride on the round-up and I hope she got something out of it. I read her interview and though she was probably somewhat of an anachronism there definitely were women like her back then who would have preferred traditional male gender roles. They would have been few and far between and would have probably faced more resentment than what was shown in the show. Overall Texas Ranch House failed to live up to my expectations of showing modern day people 'living' a different era. Instead the show and storyline were about the personalities and the dynamics between them - just another reality show. It was interesting but I think Survivor does this type of thing a lot better. Worth a watch but certainly not outstanding. I hope PBS casts a little more carefully in the future as this 'House' show was a real drop off in quality from the others they have done and I think the reviews on this site leave no doubt as to which roles were poorly cast. Expand
  7. JohnDoe
    Jun 2, 2006
    9
    Overall the show was well done. There wasnt much to learn from the participants, however, the voice over did give some insight to the 1860's ranch houses. There were multiple problems with the participants, more specifically the cooke family. I will begin with Mr. Cooke. From the first episode you almost feel bad for this man. His life, whether he realises it or not, is completly Overall the show was well done. There wasnt much to learn from the participants, however, the voice over did give some insight to the 1860's ranch houses. There were multiple problems with the participants, more specifically the cooke family. I will begin with Mr. Cooke. From the first episode you almost feel bad for this man. His life, whether he realises it or not, is completly controlled by his wife. He cant make a single decision without her closeby. It is sad because you could see first hand that she was controlling him. Any decision he made, many of which were reasonable, were undermined by his wife. I have no idea how he lives with that woman everyday. Mr. Cooke never kept his word, and whether this was due to his wife or his own ignorance of the situation he was unable to esablish a working realationship with his ranch hands. The jobs that Mr. Cooke was given were overly unsuccesful. He was unable to keep accurate financial books is just one example of his many failures. For this man to tell Robbie HE didnt know what HE was doing was insulting. Robbie knew what he was doing, Mr. Cooke couldnt say the same. There is the issue with Mr. Cooke calling the indian's terrorists. GUESS WHAT we INVADED THEIR land and KILLED all of them, not the other way around. I lost all respect for Mr. Cooke after he said that. He is an ill educated moron. Then there is Mrs. Cooke. This is a woman who always talked about women rights and honor. She always talked about how 21st century women can do whatever they want, and no man can stop them. Her ideals are wonderful and all 21st century women should believe this. However, her and her daughters proved bad examples to all the hard working 21st century women. Mrs. Cooke was a fat, lazy, brick who did not do anything in helping the ranch prosper and even pretended to get sick so she didnt have throw a party. She didnt tend to the garden, she didnt clean the dishes, she didnt do anything that a 19th century woman would have done. Aside from this she was an awful (awful!!!!) human being. She manipulated her husband for so many years, and when she realised she couldnt do the same with the cow hands she made their lives a living hell. For all the women in the world who go to work and have children, Mrs. Cooke is the worst roll model to have. If I was a working mother, I would make sure that my children learned nothing from Mrs. Cooke. Ill move now to the daughters. Talk about attention whores. These girls were dumb as bricks, brainwashed by their mother, and proved to be stupid california teenage girls any chance they got. They were lazier then lazy. They sat all day playing cards, or playing with a cat. Not to mention they did it in their underwear. It is obvious that they wanted attention from the cowboys, and when they didnt get it, they hated the them. They are brats and are complete mirrors of their horrible mother. I feel bad for the future husbands of these fools. For the duaghter who said "how dare they critisize my father for the supposed "failure" of the ranch" NEWS FLASH, your ranch was a disaster. You couldnt see that because you are an idiot, who needs to read a history text book (or read anything intelligent to that effect.) The final woman disaster on the show was MORA, the lady of all work. She spoke often about women and their rolls in society. She is right in the sense that women are imporant aspect of today's society as well as 19th century america. However, she missed the point of the show. It wasnt about proving some feminist point. She always tried to prove that women could do anything a man could. Im sure no one on the ranch believed otherwise, however, she were suppose to play the roll of a 19th century woman. THAT MEANS do all the women chores. Clean, cook, and whatever else was necessary. She failed to realise her roll, which is just as important as the men's roll. Mora, you need to realise that gender rolls exist strongly in the post civil war era. You go to stanford, and you act like a moron. Mora, during the indian situation, said something to the effect "well we killed them all" followed by a laugh. Pardon my ignorance, but where is the hilarity in that? Why is that funny. When have you ever laughed at the holocaust? Do you understand that almost an entire race of people were exterminated from this planet because of what Americans did? Next time you might think about that before you laugh! To close with the Cooke family, It is hard to say a single nice thing about them. They are lazy morons. I feel they were there for vacation and didnt take a single minute of it seriously. Now lets get to the ranch hands. Ill admit, the original foreman and cook were trouble makers. They were better off gone. After they left, however, there was a group of very respectful and nice cowboys under the greatest person, Robbie. For Mrs. Cooke to say she feared for her daughters when Roobie was around made me sick to the stomach. I would let Robbie be my daughters best friend, because that they may see what a true man is all about. I think that Robbie was the most sucessful on the ranch. He did everything he was suppose to do, and treated everyone with the utmost respect. Jared is another notable cowboy. This is a man who took the most out of the experience. He learned more then anyone, he went from computer-geek to skilled cowboy. He learned and felt for the Indian American situation. He bought a horse, he asked the girls to make him a shirt. He was 100% into the idea of living a post civil war life. The way it ended for him is appaling, but at least all the cowboys left together. If Mora was not proving a point, like she said she wasnt, then why didnt she leave with the rest of them. She was a "cowboy" after all. I felt extremely bad for the cowboys. I felt, however, they demonstrated a great amount of honor in the face of pure evil, Mrs. Cooke. Good job cowboys, and very good job to robbie the foreman. Expand
  8. JoanneP
    May 25, 2006
    9
    I watched this show from beginning to end, and was riveted to each episode. As others before me, it was the Cooke women that just didn't grasp the concept! They brought their 21st values to a 19th century scenario, and what would have pleased me was if the Natives just took them all away! Dinner with china!! Gimme a break!!!
  9. RickW
    May 22, 2006
    8
    Mr Cooke seemed to bring with him the same distain to workers that most modern day executives thrive on. Just look at the fear he had about the workers interacton with his family, then the girls
  10. danl
    May 21, 2006
    8
    It would be interesting to know how many ranches actually failed during this period and if so, what were the real reasons. In this case, I think the ranch failed, because of the Cooke family themselves. Was the show trying to show us that a lot clueless people went out to get rich on the ranch only to fail? I have a hard time believing a ranch owner would know nothing about the trade (as It would be interesting to know how many ranches actually failed during this period and if so, what were the real reasons. In this case, I think the ranch failed, because of the Cooke family themselves. Was the show trying to show us that a lot clueless people went out to get rich on the ranch only to fail? I have a hard time believing a ranch owner would know nothing about the trade (as the Cookes clearly didn't). He couldn't "manage" his own house, let alone a group of cowboys. Mrs Cooke was too busy manipulating him instead of minding the equally important duties of food and camp cleanliness. It was pretty unclear what the Cooke daughters were doing at all, except hanging out in their underwear and playing cards. Well, the Cookes are now back in their 21 century lives where they belong. And that makes me feel kind of lousy about the state of America in the 21st century. Cowboys. You guys were awesome and did a great job and deserved a much better employer. Expand
  11. R.R.L.
    May 21, 2006
    1
    The Cooke family apparently didn't realize that they were supposed to leave the new century behind and fully participate in showing us life on a Texas ranch in the late 1800s. That means keeping up the garden and washing the dishes, not laying around in petticoats making little dollies while the flies gather. Mr. Cooke didn't get it either, mistakenly applying present-day The Cooke family apparently didn't realize that they were supposed to leave the new century behind and fully participate in showing us life on a Texas ranch in the late 1800s. That means keeping up the garden and washing the dishes, not laying around in petticoats making little dollies while the flies gather. Mr. Cooke didn't get it either, mistakenly applying present-day terrorist negotiations to what should have been a "historically aware" and respectful relationship with the native Americans. Putting his own spin on the situation with Jared's horse was the last straw, and his dismissal of Jared, at Mrs. Cooke's behest, resulted in the loss of all the cowboys. Yet the Cooke's seemed to leave the experiment, thinking that their ranch would succeed. Huh? I see on the PBS web site that there are resources for teachers to use in the classroom. Other than costuming and scenery and watching the cowboys do their work, there's more here to confuse our young people about this period in history than to inform and enlighten them. PBS, if you plan another program of this kind, would you please do a better job of interviewing and screening the families who participate? Expand
  12. DonnaA
    May 21, 2006
    2
    Come on... these people couldn't get their act together if you lite a fire under their ass. There were a few of the cow hands that seemed to really try and some that even knew exactly what they were doing. But of course, all that got screwed up by the Cooke's.
  13. John
    May 19, 2006
    6
    I find it baffling that Mr. Cooke was so strongly against keeping alcohol on the ranch premises. If I had to share close quarters with his castrating wife, I'd stay crocked 24/7.
  14. patrickd
    May 10, 2006
    9
    my wife and I watched the whole show ,the cooke family really had no idea how to handle a crew of tradesmen( cowboys in1867 ) how can a group of people be dressed down by thier employer ,when they are following direction from his foreman!!!! mrs. cooke should have talked to Robbie directly, and given him and him only the the work plan she expected and sent her husband to help natcho. and my wife and I watched the whole show ,the cooke family really had no idea how to handle a crew of tradesmen( cowboys in1867 ) how can a group of people be dressed down by thier employer ,when they are following direction from his foreman!!!! mrs. cooke should have talked to Robbie directly, and given him and him only the the work plan she expected and sent her husband to help natcho. and by the way its hard to keep your word when your wife wont let you. Expand
  15. Mike
    May 9, 2006
    7
    It was an interesting show. The Cook's seem to be mis-casted. Mr. Cook was a terrible manager. Mrs. Cook kept Mr. Cook's cahones in a jar under the porch. Moira was a constant over educated femminist whinner that should of put on her rainbow kerchef and came out of the closet. Soon to be teaching at a community college near you. Robby, Shaun and all the cowboys did a great job. It was an interesting show. The Cook's seem to be mis-casted. Mr. Cook was a terrible manager. Mrs. Cook kept Mr. Cook's cahones in a jar under the porch. Moira was a constant over educated femminist whinner that should of put on her rainbow kerchef and came out of the closet. Soon to be teaching at a community college near you. Robby, Shaun and all the cowboys did a great job. They kept the project allive. The Cook daughters were as usless as their mom. The way Jarred was treated was shameful. Mr. Cook could of turned everything around at the end by being generous, but moma didn't give him permission. Maybe the producers want all the he said she said stuff to jazz up the show. Over all it could of been much better, but was still watchable. Expand
  16. Nancy
    May 8, 2006
    5
    The Cooke's were appalling on several levels - their treatment of the cowboys in general, the food issue (including the wasted garden), the "terrorist"negotiation.... how could they not realize that if your entire work force quits, that you have contributued significantly to the problem. Yes, cocky young men can be hard to handle but some food and respect can do wonders for their The Cooke's were appalling on several levels - their treatment of the cowboys in general, the food issue (including the wasted garden), the "terrorist"negotiation.... how could they not realize that if your entire work force quits, that you have contributued significantly to the problem. Yes, cocky young men can be hard to handle but some food and respect can do wonders for their morale. The cowboys and the ranch were mis-handled and the 21st century-isms were painful to listen to. I'm glad Jared took the horse, it was his and I agreed with what he called Mr. Cooke. Expand
  17. SE
    May 8, 2006
    6
    I kept waiting for somebody to knock off Mrs. Cooke. She and her idiot children should have been out in that garden constantly, when they weren't doing other "women's work" on the ranch (ala 1867). As for Mr. Cooke. He makes me think of the office manager on The Office. Clueless as to how disliked, incompetent, and useless he actually is. And, I loved their response to the I kept waiting for somebody to knock off Mrs. Cooke. She and her idiot children should have been out in that garden constantly, when they weren't doing other "women's work" on the ranch (ala 1867). As for Mr. Cooke. He makes me think of the office manager on The Office. Clueless as to how disliked, incompetent, and useless he actually is. And, I loved their response to the assessment. "Why are we reading this?" Why, indeed? They believed then and now that they were right, knew it all, didn't need any help. Yuk. Expand
  18. GerriA
    May 8, 2006
    10
    Someday we will want to send colonies to Mars, etc. I imagine someone will try to find colonists as they did for this show. "We need an administrator, a cook, etc." TRH shows just how far wrong we can go! A cook who is expert at fine cuisine can't handle atrocious working conditions. A boss who's used to constant applicants for jobs doesn't know how to motivate and keep Someday we will want to send colonies to Mars, etc. I imagine someone will try to find colonists as they did for this show. "We need an administrator, a cook, etc." TRH shows just how far wrong we can go! A cook who is expert at fine cuisine can't handle atrocious working conditions. A boss who's used to constant applicants for jobs doesn't know how to motivate and keep workers. Fascinating to see it work out in real life! Expand
  19. TirzahA
    May 8, 2006
    10
    I would like to mention that Mr.Cook is a terrible business man. He sold his cows 91 for $25 and like 40 for $18. This gave him a grand total of $2275 If he had sold just the 91 for 10 more dollars he could have made $3185, if 5 more he would have had $2730. Seeing as the army had #1 asked him to come sell to them and #2 already picked out the best of his cows I think he easily could have I would like to mention that Mr.Cook is a terrible business man. He sold his cows 91 for $25 and like 40 for $18. This gave him a grand total of $2275 If he had sold just the 91 for 10 more dollars he could have made $3185, if 5 more he would have had $2730. Seeing as the army had #1 asked him to come sell to them and #2 already picked out the best of his cows I think he easily could have gotten the $2730 more and if he haggled gotten closer to the $3185. Not a good business man. Other then that I thought it was a really great show and would be more then intrested in seeing another one. :) PLEASE! Expand
  20. RichardF
    May 7, 2006
    6
    Everything that I'm about to say is predicated on the assumption that the editing of the film footage allowed for an accurate sample of the entire experience of the participant characters. I have to agree with the general assessment of those postings I've read so far. The Ranch owner, as the appointed leader, must assume responsibility of the overall failure of the venture. What Everything that I'm about to say is predicated on the assumption that the editing of the film footage allowed for an accurate sample of the entire experience of the participant characters. I have to agree with the general assessment of those postings I've read so far. The Ranch owner, as the appointed leader, must assume responsibility of the overall failure of the venture. What seemed very compelling to me was the way the human conflict seemed to mirror age old conflict that exists between capital and proletariat. Sorry, to make this obvious point but, without the cowboys, the most important work of the ranch couldn't be done. Kindness and respect is not a twenty first century development within human society. I feel the Cooke family and their house servant Ms. Finkelstein treated the working cowboys with extreme contempt - explicitly in the case of the Cookes, subvertly in the case of Ms. Finkelstein. (In fact, I found her overall influence to be pernicious because, in acting as family sycophant she reinforced their belief in the correctness of their selfishness. Thanks! Expand
  21. HiC
    May 7, 2006
    10
    Love the cowboys, you guys rocked.
  22. JanetteG
    May 7, 2006
    7
    The best insight from the show is that Mr. Cooke is probably no different in his day job as a hospital administrator. No wonder health care is in crisis! As for Moira, she is the stereotypical feminist ideologue- humorless and self absorbed.
  23. DinahL
    May 7, 2006
    5
    We enjoy this type of PBS program and were looking forward to Texas Ranch House, but from the first night we didn't get the Cooke family's attitude. They related to everything as though they were living in 2006, they didn't really adapt to the 1867 lifestyle. We couldn't stand Mrs. Cooke and her overbearing ways, it took away from the show and the 1867 staging. We did We enjoy this type of PBS program and were looking forward to Texas Ranch House, but from the first night we didn't get the Cooke family's attitude. They related to everything as though they were living in 2006, they didn't really adapt to the 1867 lifestyle. We couldn't stand Mrs. Cooke and her overbearing ways, it took away from the show and the 1867 staging. We did enjoy the cowboys, and their interactions with the indians. We couldn't believe how lazy the Cooke family was, especially the women. Expand
  24. TerryB
    May 6, 2006
    10
    The show was a definite 10. The Cooke's were hopeless. I got an uneasy feeling about them as soon as they met the ranch hands. It was downhill from there. Ranch owners wives did indeed participate in the running of ranches and that included cooking for, cleaning up after, washing for and feeding any hands they were lucky to have. They also made decisions about the operations. No The show was a definite 10. The Cooke's were hopeless. I got an uneasy feeling about them as soon as they met the ranch hands. It was downhill from there. Ranch owners wives did indeed participate in the running of ranches and that included cooking for, cleaning up after, washing for and feeding any hands they were lucky to have. They also made decisions about the operations. No argument here. But, if they were successful, they realized exactly what the hands contributed and treated them with respect. The Cooke women did nothing of the kind. They were snotty, disrespectful and downright lazy. Not to mention stupid. A dinner for possibly dangerous Comanches ("do we put the napkins on the plate or to the side"), sitting in on meetings with the foreman, wandering around in their underwear, leaving food and dirty dishes out for 8 days after a party, spending time making dolls, napping and playing with the cats. Mr. Cooke (a controller in real life) couldn't keep complete/accurate books. But hey, this is Texas - he did the Enron crowd proud. His remarks to the affect that he feared for his family's safety by the hands of his employees really destroyed any sympathy I could have mustered. Enough, already! The list of their grievances is too long. The hands had their faults but nothing (nothing!) compared with the owners. Robby rules the day. He should have been cast as the owner. After all, he is a real rancher and in an area of Texas far more rugged than the Alpine area. I know, I have camped in both aeas many times. I admit I could have not participated in the show. I wouldn't have lasted more than 3 days. That's about the same amount of time I would give the Cooke's if this had been the real thing. Expand
  25. AnnetteI
    May 6, 2006
    5
    I must give it at leas a 5 since I did watch all 4 nights. I didn't really like all the 'drama'. I know that some 'critics' said that in was 'slow' until all the drama started but I like watching what people during that time period would have really done. I don't think the cowboys were perfect but the reamining ones I really liked. Robby was my I must give it at leas a 5 since I did watch all 4 nights. I didn't really like all the 'drama'. I know that some 'critics' said that in was 'slow' until all the drama started but I like watching what people during that time period would have really done. I don't think the cowboys were perfect but the reamining ones I really liked. Robby was my favorite (I think I'd ride with him any time) and Jared was my 2nd. I really respected all of them for riding out with Jared at the end. I had a hard time with Mrs. Cooke's demeaning attitude throughout the whole show toward the cowboys. She was always accusing them of lying and being dishonest. It was like she really wanted them all to leave so her and her family could have the ranch to themsleves. I got the impression that she did not 'get' that the ranch would not 'run' without them. I did not like the way she infulenced her husband to go back on his word to the cowboys. Can you imagine if he had done her about her house the way she did him about the ranch!? My respect took a nose dive at the meeting where Mr. Cooke got 'tough' with the cowboys. My respect for Mr. Cooke completely dissolved when he called the Indians "terrorists". I did not see a comparison between terrorists and Native American Indians. And his refusal to 'buy' Jared back...Oh, my. I thought all the cowboys should have left right then. Mr. Cooke hit an all time low when he tried to 'sell' Jared his own horse back! By Mr. Cooke's own admission and 'deal' with the Commanches he did not deal for Jared. So I was truly dumbfounded. Mr. Cooke should have read some Louis L'Amour books. *wink*. I also thought it was very low and a slap in the face when he tried to sell the horses for such a high price to the cowboys. I was insulted for them, after all their hard work. My personal feeling is that most of the desention between the family and the cowboys lay at Mrs. Cooke's door. Instead of endearing herself to the men on the ranch and showing them common coutersy and respect it seems she took most opportunities to demean them and find fault. I would like to see another Ranch House series but I would like to see a family in there that would embrace the experience and not try to be so controlling. With out the cowboys there would have been no ranch. My personal opinion is that without Robby specifically there would have been no ranch. He was a wealth of information on many different subjects that Mr and Mrs Cooke chose not to utilize. Robby, thumbs up from me. Jared, I hope you keep riding, you made a great buckaroo! Expand
  26. carlh
    May 5, 2006
    5
    Bunch of biggest cry-baby whinning cowboy's I ever saw. They want to write their own ticket. They work for the Owner, not the other way around. I would have given them diapers and fired them all. I did not mind the Cooke family. Hard to tell if the editing was do to skew the show. All we get to see is the arguments. How about some of the hard work taking care of the house and all?
  27. Al
    May 5, 2006
    10
    Billiant!
  28. crystalp
    May 5, 2006
    2
    The Cooke family was by far the most chilling self-serving family with the worst work ethic on the ranch. I really didn't like this show.
  29. jen
    May 5, 2006
    6
    The Cooke family made it very hard to watch this show.
  30. PollyA
    May 4, 2006
    9
    A real insight into human nature as well as life in the 1860s in Texas. Historically well done. It was definitely times that tried men's souls, and some of them came off very badly, especially Mrs. Cooke. Mr. Cooke, who prided himself on his management style, was hopeless with his wife as well as with the men he needed to keep to make the ranch a success. Fascinating.
  31. KChambers
    May 4, 2006
    9
    I watched every minute of Texas Ranch House! Loved the cowboys!! Jared makes me even prouder to be a Texan. And he is right, you don't have to pay for your horse twice. Sorry Mr. Cook but a man is only as good as his word--and you're well-- not so good. I do feel a little sorry for you though (because of your wife..mmm...you poor man!)
  32. lh
    May 4, 2006
    8
    A riveting trainwreck.
  33. JimZ
    May 4, 2006
    1
    The Cooke family, beginning with Mr. Cooke, were about as feckless a group of people I've ever seen, even on an entertainment/reality project such as this. Were they deliberately chosen for their treachery and incompetence?
  34. joellineo
    May 4, 2006
    3
    The review of 3 is for Mr. and MRs. Cooke, Moira, the first cook, the first head cowboy. I'd give a 9 or 10 to the regular cowboys! Mr. Cooke is an idiot-wimp, Mrs Cooke is a "rhymes with witch," Moira is pathetic in her 21st century feminism. These 5 people were are the result of exceptionally poor casting by the producers and directors of the show. If, as they also did in Colonial The review of 3 is for Mr. and MRs. Cooke, Moira, the first cook, the first head cowboy. I'd give a 9 or 10 to the regular cowboys! Mr. Cooke is an idiot-wimp, Mrs Cooke is a "rhymes with witch," Moira is pathetic in her 21st century feminism. These 5 people were are the result of exceptionally poor casting by the producers and directors of the show. If, as they also did in Colonial House, they can't find people who will absolutely agree to leave behind their 21st century sensibiliites and politcal correctness, and sign a contract to that effect, they should not even be considered for inclusion in the show. There also should be intelligence tests administered to these people! What person of even average intention would leave out rotting food for 8 days in 100+ degree temperatures? What "cowboys" would refuse to have a night watch and then spend 3-4 hours every a.m. re-rounding up the cattle who strayed during the night? Etc. Etc. I think I'll stick to the British re-inactments in the future. They have, certainly, some of these flaws, but many, many fewer people who seem just to want to be on TV!. Expand
  35. DarrylC
    May 4, 2006
    9
    I found the pacing actually quicker than Colonial House, less characters to keep track of and more affinity for the material. The four nights went by like a fly buzzing around your head. Really, I felt transported back in time and saw the transition in the participants as well (except in the ranch house itself) through pretty good editing. Really enjoyed this type of TV!
  36. kenw
    May 4, 2006
    9
    I think it was a very good series. The problems That I saw was that the players kept forgetting that they weren in then 1860's and not in 2006. Times were very different back then.
  37. TomG
    May 4, 2006
    5
    The "historical accuracy" of this program is undercut by the whining and pettiness of its 21st century participants. Few of the cast, especially the women of the Cooke family are willing to embrace the limitations and mares of the 19th century. The series has more to say about the current century than the 19th.
  38. CarolineM
    May 4, 2006
    5
    The 'cowhands' have had a hard time understanding that their job on the ranch is working for the roof over their heads and their food. The ranch owner has never embraced the idea that cows will keep him and his family from dying. Five women needed to feed one man in the main house and one man to feed 8 hands in the bunkhouse. Do the women no realize if they don't have The 'cowhands' have had a hard time understanding that their job on the ranch is working for the roof over their heads and their food. The ranch owner has never embraced the idea that cows will keep him and his family from dying. Five women needed to feed one man in the main house and one man to feed 8 hands in the bunkhouse. Do the women no realize if they don't have healthy working cowhands, there is no future. As it is hard for the woment to really embrace the lifestyle, maybe they could put a bit more of themselves into looking after the 'cowboys' so that they are well fed and ready to work. Mr Cook would have been dead in a very short time. We don't deal with terrorists-is he crazy. Mrs Cook seemed to get it when she understood the Cook's were on the Indians land. What cocoon has she been living in during 2006 that she didn't know that fact of the 1900s? I thought all the females would work to keep the homefires burning so the men could go off and hunt cows. I wouldn't have wanted to rely on Mr Cook to provide my safety, so he can go and ride too. Might do him some good and raise his ego if he finds a cow or two. Very disappointed, but not too surprised. Hard for modern day mentality to go back in time and leave their modern thoughts behind. Robby is the one I would want to point the way, although he too is saddle with his ethnic subserviant attitudes. Step up Robbie, you could have it all. Expand
  39. BL
    May 3, 2006
    9
    Is it possible to transport 21st century Americans to an 1860's Texas ranch? Can a strong, domineering American woman take the back seat an 1860's woman would have occupied? It would appear not. Mrs. Cook, ranch owner's wife, installs herself as a "co-manager" and insists on being involved in ranch business decisions. The emasculated Mr. Cook comes across as a petty tyrant Is it possible to transport 21st century Americans to an 1860's Texas ranch? Can a strong, domineering American woman take the back seat an 1860's woman would have occupied? It would appear not. Mrs. Cook, ranch owner's wife, installs herself as a "co-manager" and insists on being involved in ranch business decisions. The emasculated Mr. Cook comes across as a petty tyrant who waffles on decisions after his wife's nagging. The ranch hands are a generally likeable group, with Robby the foreman having more sense than all the other characters put together. While the narrator asides ("a 19th century cattle ranch would not have invited the Commanches to dinner") put things into more historical perspective, watch this show for the human drama and group dynamics rather than historical accuracy. Expand
Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 9 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 9
  2. Negative: 2 out of 9
  1. 30
    A plodding series that really just proves life was unrelentingly hard and pretty monotonous in the not-so-wild West.
  2. "Ranch House" is engaging, droll commentary on the American dream and how we became the nation we are today.
  3. So it turns out that being cowboys isn't so romantic after all. It's also mighty slow-moving from an entertainment standpoint.