Victoria Cannon

The Cannon family runs the High Chaparral Ranch in the Arizona Territory in the 1870s. Check out another western by David Dortort.
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Victoria Cannon

Post by A Ponderosa Pine » Thu Aug 21, 2008 8:30 pm

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Victoria Montoya was Don Sebastian Montoya's only daughter. She was Don Sebastian's treasure and grew up in Sonora, Mexico, against a backdrop of wealth and privilege. Her father did not inherit his wealth, however; he carved The Rancho Montoya out of the wilderness with "his own two hands" and was no stranger to hard work. His son, Manolito, was Victoria's younger brother and known to be lazy and shiftless ... yet he could be tough when the occasion called for it. Very little is known of Victoria's mother, but we know that she was alive at least until Victoria's 18th birthday, when she gifted her with the jewel-encrusted necklace her own mother had given to her. These people were Victoria's strongest influences during her upbringing and, while she did not grow up spoiled, she did mature into a stubborn, often headstrong young woman.

Victoria's extraordinary beauty -- highlighted by her lithe figure, flowing jet black hair and angelic face -- made her an excellent marital prospect (not to mention her breeding and fortune). But Victoria, according to her father, "had a mind like a wild horse," and would not marry just anyone. She wanted a man even stronger than her own father and discarded suitor after suitor. Don Sebastian feared that Victoria was passing the age where girls in Mexico were married, and Manolito began referring to her as his "old maid sister."

When John Cannon and his brother Buck visited the Rancho Montoya for the first time, Victoria was introduced to them at dinner. Manolito had earlier stolen John's horse and given it to Victoria as a gift, so Victoria's first comment to John was that she would be happy to return the present. John immediately impressed her with his gallantry by graciously asking that she keep it. She then asked him what brought him to their country, and John -- normally not a conversationalist -- launched into his mission to settle in Arizona and live peacefully among the Apaches. Victoria clearly admired him, sensing him to be a strong, powerful man.

Don Sebastian wished for Victoria to enter into an arranged marriage with John Cannon to safeguard their new treaty, and Victoria readily accepted. John was under the impression, early in their marriage, that Victoria was only acting upon her father's wishes ... but it became clear, only a short time later, that she had really married him for love. When she turned her back on Sonora, she turned her back on her life as a princess and threw herself into the more challenging role of a settler's wife. She was ready to pick up a gun and fight ... she was capable of nursing any injured cowboy or Apache who bled onto her living room floor ... she was ready to roll up her sleeves and do whatever was needed. What she didn't count on, though, was that her "love at first sight" for John would be unrequited for some time. John was still grieving for his first wife and had no room in his heart for Victoria. Yet Victoria had faith and stayed on .... telling her bewildered brother, who had accompanied her to High Chaparral, that someday John Cannon would love her as much as she loved him. Manolito was very close to his sister, both in age and affection, and could not understand what force drove Victoria to stay at High Chaparral.

Victoria's faith did not go unrewarded. John found it difficult to let go of Annalee, but eventually his new wife taught the stoic, hardened man how to love again. Every trial they faced seemed to gradually bring them closer together ... and when Victoria was critically injured by a horse, John was willing to risk everything - including the ranch - to save her.

Victoria's only sadness was that her marriage to John failed to bring children. Yet there were compensations ... the main ones being John, Blue, and Buck. Blue, John's son, was extremely reluctant to accept Victoria as a mother figure, but Victoria gradually won him over. She appealed to the sensitive, noble and poetic side of Blue, and he couldn't help responding favorably to her. The day Blue accepted an expensive birthday gift from her - a silver Mexican saddle - was the day she knew she had won his love. Buck, John's brother, was another man who couldn't help loving Victoria. Early in her marriage to John, Buck witnessed Victoria's struggles with her new husband and he reached out to her in friendship. It was clear that Buck, in his own way, loved Victoria greatly .... and Victoria always kept a special place in her heart for her brother-in-law.

It was easy to see why Victoria Montoya Cannon was so widely adored. She was courageous and often stubborn, but she brought a sense of beauty and elegance into the male Chaparral household. Unlike Annalee, who only pretended to dream John's dream, Victoria did share his dream and chose to live a life of hardship and danger over a life of comfort. She could have, according to Manolito, "lived in a castle and had everything," but this would have been no life for Victoria. She was the one woman strong enough to help John Cannon build a ranch for his family and a future for his son. Given the deep love that grew between Victoria and her husband ... and all they accomplished together .... It's apparent that their marriage was "arranged" by a much higher authority than her father!


~ (Thanks in part to Brenda Meskunas)

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What is your opinion of Victoria, and her relationships with the others in the series?

How is she like or different from the women Ben Cartwright married?
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Re: Victoria Cannon

Post by sarah1955 » Wed Sep 10, 2008 11:29 pm

I remember this series very well, I was just a kid when I watched it, it was aired in Argentina for many years. And I remember it because of Manolito, I just loved him :luscious .
As to Victoria Montoya, she was portrayed by Linda Cristal, her real name is Marta Victoria Moya Burgos and she was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina (just like me) on february 25, 1934.
I admired her character because of her personality, she was a determined woman, she had a very strong personality in a time in which women had to keep their thoughts and sometimes their feelings to themselves, in this sense she may be different to some of the characters which appeared in Bonanza, and I must add that she was really in love with her husband (in fiction of course) John Cannon, who by the way was a very very handsome man. Thanks for all this info :pine , it brought back many childhood memories, and nice things are always welcome. :yes
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Re: Victoria Cannon

Post by A Ponderosa Pine » Thu Sep 11, 2008 6:54 pm

Thanks for the information about Linda Cristal, Sarah! I'm glad you enjoyed The High Chaparral, just like me!! :cactussmilie

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Re: Victoria Cannon

Post by barb » Thu Sep 11, 2008 9:39 pm

To me Victoria was the glue that kept the family together. She was peacemaker, comforter, confidant, yet she was strong and straightforward , never failing to admonish someone she felt was wrong or acting stupidly.

She was like Elizabeth in her devotion and love for her father, and also in her refinement. She was like Inger in that she believed in John's dream, and worked hard beside him to help him achieve that dream. Like Marie she came into the marriage needing to make her own place in the family, and win over the love of her husband's family.

Victoria was beautiful, feminine, strong, determined and a vital part of show.

The High Chaparral was a great western!



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Re: Victoria Cannon

Post by sarah1955 » Thu Sep 11, 2008 9:41 pm

You are welcome :pine !!!
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Re: Victoria Cannon

Post by patina » Sun Sep 21, 2008 7:30 pm

Victoria seemed to be a very rare woman among female characters of TV shows of the period. She was young, determined, and knew how to get what she wanted by using her brain. Even though her father thought he was using her as a pawn, she married John out of her own desire for him. She didn't want to replace Annalee, but she did want a mother-son relationship with Blue. And she certainly didn't take any nonsense from John.

I loved her relationship with her father and brother--teasing with Mano and feisty with her father. It seemed she could see straight through any scheme her father cooked up, except that one where he convinced everyone he was dying.

Even though she and John didn't have children of their own, I liked that. There weren't added characters that were little kids one season and teens the next.

One of the reasons this show has stood the test of time for me is Victoria. She didn't back down from anyone (even her abrasive husband), voiced her own opinions (whether anyone agreed with her or not), and managed to look beautiful in that wilting Arizona heat.
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Re: Victoria Cannon

Post by buongiorno » Mon Sep 22, 2008 3:03 pm

I vaguely remember the High Chaparral from years ago.
I read through the threads to try and jolt some Grey cells.
I remembered liking Blue and Manolitto, and I remembered Victoria with somewhat sad "hush puppy" eyes.

Now, your summary of her character gives the impression of a very strong woman, which I don't remember at all, but really, try opening the thread and just looking at her eyes in the picture, don't they look sad :lol

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Re: Victoria Cannon

Post by MayRoberts » Fri Nov 14, 2008 6:11 pm

I admire Victoria because she's a lady in the whole sense of the word. She stands up for what she thinks it is correct. She's faithful to her husband. She wants the family to be together . She's a very strong woman, too. I haven't seen her going into pieces at difficult times, on the contrary, she supports her husband, defends herself in that wild territory. And, on top of that, she has good manners, she's very elegant, she knows how to dress, make up, to be feminine. I think she could be a good wife for one of the Cartwrights, too.
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Re: Victoria Cannon

Post by Victoria » Mon Mar 16, 2009 9:12 pm

I could see a remake of this show, maybe as a tv movie, with Salma Hayek playing Victoria.

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