Gunsmoke (1955–1975): Season 14, Episode 26 - Exodus 21:22 - full transcript

Frank Reardon, a former lawman and friend of Matt's, had his pregnant wife killed by a gang of men. He has tracked the last three remain men to Dodge to carry out his form of punishment.

Gunsmoke, starring
James Arness as Matt Dillon.

You know, Louis, I
could use some help.

I earned enough for now, Sam.

Besides, Miss
Kitty said expressly

I shouldn't overdo myself.

Well, you're certainly
not doing that.

- Louie.
- Festus.

- Sam.
- Hi, Festus.


She's hotter than a jug full
of red ants out there, Sam.

Yeah, and it's hot in here, too.

For those of us who are working.

It's kind of a quiet day,
nothing much to do and all.

Whose got nothing to do?


He sure don't need
me helping him do that.

Well, that makes sense.

'Cause there ain't no deputying
to do or nothing like that.

Well, I'll tell you
what, Festus.

I've got about thirty cases of
whiskey back there that needs moving.

I got to make room for 15
barrels of beer that needs storing.

Now, if you'd like to
earn fifty cents or so,

you could go right
back there and start in.

I'd like to help you out,
Sam, but, uh, I can't.

I thought you were
looking for work.

Oh, no. No. No.

See, I got to keep myself ready

in case Matthew needs
me to do some deputying.

In case there was to be
some trouble breaking out.

Just supposing somebody should
ought to come in here to rob you,

wouldn't I look like a ninny
back there wrestling around...

Much obliged, Sam.

Of course now, any other time,

I'd be Johnny-on-the-spot and it
wouldn't cost you a penny, neither.

I ain't going to charge no
friend for helping him out.

No, sirree.

Oh, uh, Louie?

Oh, the world's in a
terrible state, Festus.

A terrible state.

Indian wars up north,

Indian wars in the Southwest,

robberies, killings,

all sorts of terrible things.

It just makes a fella
glad that he can't read.

- Glad?
- There you are,

reading that old newspaper,
and all you're doing is a taking on

all the problems and
troubles of somebody else,

and then you still got
your own to fret on.

Well, I'll tell you,
I'm glad I can't read.

I'm just glad.

I see what you mean.

'Course you do.

Tsk, tsk, tsk, tsk.

All that bad, is it?

Frank Reardon.

Frank Reardon? Did
he kill another one?

Run him down near Caucus City.

Caucus City.

- That there's in Kansas.
- What's in here.

You know, Louie, I'm just glad

that I ain't got
him on my heels.

Now, that there would
be a real problem.

Amen to that.

The way I figure
it, that leaves...

Well, there's just
four of them left.

Whoa, whoa, whoa!

What in thunderation's
the matter with you?


Cane, you stay outside
and keep a watch.

- You keep watch yourself.
- Do like I say.

One day I'm gonna kill him.

That's the worst thing
Reardon's done to us.


He got us hating
each other's guts.

Put some grub in a sack:
bacon, coffee, some beans.

Buy you a drink?

No, thank you.

You get that many offers
to be so choosy? Hm?

- Please, let me go.
- Just trying to be friendly.

Figured maybe things being
all that quiet around here.

Hey, Bradford, leave her be.

Little drink? Little
talk, maybe, huh?


Blast you. That's
what got us into this.

It don't blizzard in
Kansas summer.

Now, once more, real polite.

It's him. It's Reardon!

I'll cover the back.

Hey, come on. Get up,
get up, get up! It's Reardon!

I don't see nothing.

But he was out there.

Then we'll find him.

This time, we'll
stand and fight.

Ain't the first time
you've said that.

Tried it when they got Marlow and
Henry. You run off faster than any of us.

Then stay here.

I'll face him alone.


Reardon, where are you?

I'll fight you,
but it wasn't me.

I didn't hurt your squaw.


But you didn't help her, either.

She let you all in from that blizzard,
and you sure didn't protect her.

He's over there.

What's the matter? Are you hurt?

Let me take a look.
Now, don't be scared.

I'm not gonna hurt
you. I'm not one of them.

Let me take a look.

Now, listen, it's nothing.

Don't you worry about
it. It's just a scratch.

I'm sorry you got
mixed up in this.

Whoa, there. Whoa.

- Doc, you hear...
- Get out of my way.

- What's the matter with you?
- A bunch of maniacs running around

on the public roadways. They
ought to be horsewhipped.

- What are you talking about?
- None of your business.

You hear about Frank Reardon?

- What about him?
- Well, I was over at the Long Branch

a few minutes ago and I was
talking to Festus and Louie,

and they were telling
me about Frank Reardon.

- You know him, don't you?
- Yes, I know him.

Well, do you know
he's in Kansas?

No, I didn't know that.

- Well, it seems a little spooky...
- Spooky?

Well, look, Doc, I know there's been
all kinds of renegades and killings

in and out of Dodge, but from
what I hear, he's a mad dog.

A mad dog? Frank Reardon?

Burke, what in thunder's
the matter with you?

He'd sooner shoot you
in the back as look at you.

Look, how many has he
shot? Eight, nine, ten...

As a peace officer.

I'm talking about since
he's been chasing...

Wait a minute, Burke.

Frank Reardon, according to
what I hear, has killed three men.

And eyewitnesses
say they all drew first.

- You saying that makes it right?
- I'm not saying anything of the kind.

I don't condone killing any
more than the next one, but it...

- Howdy, Doc.
- Oh, hello, Louie.

- Doc, I got to tell you.
- Yeah, but Burke beat you to it.

Louie, will you please
take care of my rig for me?

- Sure thing.
- Thank you.

- How'd he take it?
- How'd he take what?

The news of Frank Reardon.

How does he take anything
he doesn't like to hear?

I've always found it
depends on who tells him.

Look, I don't have to
take it from you, too.

Well! I might have
known it was you.

You are an absolute and
utter walking catastrophe.

Ever since the day you
first set foot in this town,

it's been nothing
but complete chaos.

There's no place I can get
away from you in Dodge City.

There's just no
place I can hide.

Neither snow, nor rain,
nor heat, nor gloom of night

can stop these couriers in the swift
completion of their appointed rounds.

But Festus Haggen can.

It isn't snowing
or raining, Doc.

Oh, for heaven's sake.

Poor old scamp.

The years is sure
hunching up on him.

Brains are getting all muddly.

Snow in the middle of August.

All right, boys,
back it up here.

What's happened?

Marshal, we got
to get out of here.

We'll talk about that later.
What happened to him?

Been shot, Matt. Let's
get him up to the office.

Festus. Louie. Give me a hand.

- Be careful of that shoulder now...
- Watch it.

It was over to Willow Creek.

You ever hear of Frank
Reardon, Marshal?

Yeah, I've heard of him.
He's a friend of mine.

All right, get your hands up.

All right, on your feet.

Jail's right over that way.

We ain't done nothing.

I'd call drawing a gun
on a marshal something.

How, uh... how good a
friend is this Reardon?

He's as good a friend as I got.

Let's go.

Well, I can't seem to find anything
in the wanted posters on you two.

- You figured there would be?
- I was hoping.

I told you, we ain't done
nothing the law can hold us for,

including what happened to
that squaw that Reardon married.

If there was proof, how come he
don't make no charge against us?

The hunt of Frank Reardon.

Next thing you know, they'll
be making a song about it.

They made a hero out of a rotten
killer, that's what they've done.

They believed his lies
and made a hero out of him.

Suppose you tell
me the true story?

Well, what's the use? You
wouldn't believe me anyhow.

What was it happened
at Willow Creek?

Reardon gunned down
Keith in cold blood.

I don't believe it.

Yeah, he... he's a
friend of yours, you said.

Is that the reason you ain't heading
over to Willow Creek to get him?

Look, Marshal, he's gonna
be here looking for us.

You got to protect
us. That's your job.

You got to keep us here
under protective custody.

Don't you worry
about that, mister.

You're not going anywhere till I
have a chance to talk to Frank.

Well, you'll be all right
in a couple of days.

If I'm still alive.

It's not that bad. You're
lucky. Went clean through.

- How much do I owe you?
- Two dollars.

- There you are, Doc.
- Thank you.

So, the story of Frank Reardon's
hunt got all the way down here, did it?

There ain't many
places it ain't got.

Yeah. Well, I had no
part in what started it.

Just lie down there
and rest for a minute.

I'm gonna step outside. Festus?

You don't believe me?

Mister, I've known Frank
Reardon a good many years.

I just met you.

Appears like Reardon's hunt
is pretty near over, don't it?

- Yeah, and of all places, Dodge City.
- What do you mean by that?

Well, I was thinking about Matt.
Kind of puts him in a bad spot.


- I'll be doggoned.
- What's the matter?

Well, that's him. That's
Frank Reardon right there.

- Frank, how are you?
- Hello, Doc.

Been a long time.

Say hello to Festus Haggen.
Festus, this is Frank Reardon.

Mr. Reardon. Howdy.

- How's Matt?
- Oh, he's fine. He's just fine.

I'll be looking in
on him in a while.

Festus and I were on our way to
the Long Branch to have a beer,

- if you...
- Later, Doc.

Well, now you know
Kitty's gonna be upset if...

Have you seen three men
ride into town last hour or so?

Awful lot of men ride in
and out of Dodge, Frank.

One of these would
have a hole in him.

Figure you're the
likely one he'd head for.

You do, huh?

- Well?
- Well what?

Got to admire you, Doc...

Poorest liar in all of Kansas.

Never did enough
of it to know how.

Go get Matt.

Sorry you did that, Doc.

I was kind of hoping Matt
could have been kept out of this.

You know better than that,
Frank. This is Matt's territory.

Frank, I don't know whether
those men need killing or not...

They do.

All right, I'll take
your word for it.

It's still not your
place to do it.

- Whose place is it, Doc?
- The law.

Not the way I see it.

Reardon's came
in, over at Doc's.


Festus, keep an eye
on them, will you?

No need for me to tell you
how Matt's gonna stand on this.

I guess I picked the worst place
in the world to finally settle it.

- Hello, Frank.
- Matt.

Time's been good to you.

- How's Kitty?
- She's fine.

Why don't we go on
in and say hello to her?

- Maybe later.
- She'll be anxious to see you.


I know they're here, Matt.

I figure one of
them to be up there.

I got the other
two in jail, Frank.

Give them to me.

You know I can't do that.

This is something
that's got to be done.

What's got to be done is for you to
make some kind of charges, Frank.


All I am, all I ever been,
says it's got to be my way.

Where does that leave us?

Doc, you knew Maria.

You understand.

No, Frank. Not this, I don't.

Frank, I want you to
get back on that horse,

turn around and
ride out of Dodge.

- Do you want to think that over?
- No, I don't.

- Matt, I'm faster than you.
- You always were.

They're not worth
your getting killed for.

Well, now you're talking sense.

Stay out of it, Matt, or
I'll gun you. I mean it.


Frank, do you have any
idea what you're doing?

Now you'd better listen to me,

because I'm gonna say some things
that Maria would say if she were here.

But she's not here, Kitty. She's
not here because they killed her.

You gonna make it up to
her by killing your best friend?

You always did make a
kind of sense to me, Kitty.

I can wait for them just
as well outside of town.

Get back!

- Hold it.
- Don't shoot me.

Drop the gun.

I got him.

Yeah, you got him
all right, in the back.

So it's over.

Mister, if he dies, you're
gonna hang for this.

A jury hears my story,
they'll never hang me.

Get over there.

Put him here on
the table, Festus.

- It was him that done it, Matthew?
- Yeah, it was, Festus.

- You good for nothing, back-shooting...
- Festus, take it easy, now.

I'm bleeding.

Way I feel right now, you're lucky
you're alive to do some bleeding.

Festus, get him out of here.

- Go on. Get in there...
- Help me, I'm bleeding.

- Just hush up.
- Doc, please!

Doc's busy. Hush up, now.

What do you think, Doc?

Well, I don't know
anything yet. But I'll try.

I'll do the best I
can. You know that.

Yes, sir, so you can face
each other in the street again.

So next time it'll be
your bullet in him, maybe.

Or maybe his bullet in you.

Oh, yes, you bet.
I'll do the best I can.

- Matt.
- Hmm?

Doc said he'd let us know as
soon as he knew something.


I think now is a good time
for another drink on the house.


You know, Kitty, I think you came
along at about the right time out there.

I think you saved
a bad situation.

Oh, I don't think Frank
would've gone through with it.

He's a driven man now.

He's just lost all his
reason over this thing.

She sure was the
prettiest bride I ever saw.

Now, Kitty, nobody really
knows what happened to her.

I'm willing to take
Frank's word for it.

- Most people are.
- Except you.

Well, I can't afford to
let him kill three men

just to prove my
friendship to him.

How is he, Doc?

That's why I came down here to
see you, Matt, I knew you'd be anxious.

I... I don't know.

- You look awful worried.
- Well, I am.

Well, is there anybody
up there with him?

Oh, yes. Yes, Newly's up there.

Matt, I'm going to turn that
Keith over to you in the morning.

All right.

You look tired. Why don't
you sit down and have a drink.

No, thanks, Kitty. I'm just gonna run
down to Delmonico's and grab a bite.

- I'll see you in the morning.
- Thanks, Doc.

All right, here's your vittles.

Come on, take a-hold of them.

Hey, is he dead?

Reardon, is he dead?

No, he ain't dead.

He's hurt bad.

All right, go on, jabber,
jabber it up, both of you.

This is celebrating time, Deputy. The
end of seven long months of running.

Just don't you go a-dancing
on Reardon's grave yet,

'cause he's a long
ways from dying.

But you just said he was.

I said he was
hurt bad, and he is.

But old Doc ain't
got all his licks in yet.

And he's got a heap
to say about his dying.

Little time and
a little resting.

You don't sound too
certain about that, Deputy.

You know, you two mutton
heads make me about half sick.

You hear that, Cane? We made it.

Free at last.

Yeah, well, I'll stop worrying
when Reardon's buried, not before.

Until he's stretched out, we're gonna
be looking back over our shoulder

no matter where we ride
to, just like we've been doing

for the last seven months.

Deputy says all he needs
is rest and a little time.


we'll just have to see
that he don't get either one.

You look like you put your
tongue to some alum, Doc.

Oh, I do, huh?

Well, Frank, I'll tell you.

This wound is not healing
fast enough to suit me.

I just don't like
the way it looks.

I don't like the way it feels.

No, I guess not. You
want some laudanum?

I do not. I've been slowed
down enough as it is.

You've been completely
stopped for a while.

I'm not stopped until it's over.

Well, I just don't
understand you at all, Frank.

Couldn't expect you to, Doc.

All anybody ever saw when
they looked at her was an Indian.

A squaw.

But she was my wife.

And they'd well treat her right.

That's why we left Hayes.

She didn't want me
fighting on account of her.

Didn't matter to her where we
went, just as long as we was together.

Went as far away as we could.

Northern Montana.

Nobody in fifty miles.

We was happy, Doc.

About as happy as
human animals can get.

I finally got a few head of beef
together and drove 'em into Butte.

Early blizzard hit
while I was gone.

Seven of 'em...

freezing, dying from cold...

came by the cabin.

She forgot they'd
called her squaw.

Could have kept the door
bolted, but she let 'em in.

She fed 'em.

Let 'em warm by our fire.

They paid her back.

They got her so
scared that she ran out.

They wouldn't let her
back in, Doc, unless she...

I found her when I got back.

And I buried them both.


She was carrying my baby.

After I get 'em all...

well, they'll have paid
some for what they done.

What about the law?


if I'd told the law,

what would they have got for
running a squaw into the snow?

It's too bad you didn't
bother to find out.

You think I'm wrong.

Yes, Frank, I think
you're dead wrong.

- You know the Bible, Doc?
- I know some.

You got one?

- Never without one.
- Get it.

Look up Exodus,
Chapter 21, Verse 22.

When you find it, read it to me.

The words are burned into my head,
but I'd like to hear them said out loud.

"If men strive together,
and hurt a woman with child

so that her fruit depart,
and yet no harm follow,

he shall be surely fined

according as the woman's
husband shall lay upon him,

and he shall pay as
the judges determine."

Go on, Doc.

"But if any harm follow..."

"But if any harm follow,

then thou shalt
give life for life,

eye for eye, tooth for tooth,

hand for hand, foot for foot..."

Now, tell me again

that I don't have the
right to take their lives.


I guess if a man
tries hard enough,

he can find ways to justify
just about anything he does.

But if you're counting on
living as long as I have,

and you really
believe in this book...

then I'd suggest you take a
good, hard, long look into yourself...

before you try to ease
your conscience with this.

It ain't fair putting
me in there.

Self-defense, all it was.

Ah, what are you talking about?

Reardon had his
back turned to you.

He didn't have his hand
no place near his pistol.

How do you figure self-defense?

Well, you know what
he was intending to do.

Go on. Just go on, get
in there and hush up.

Hey, wait a minute. Open up here.
You got no cause to keep us in here.

Well now, the keeping
was at your asking.

That was before Keith
here put a bullet in Reardon.

Now we're asking out.

Just about the way
Matthew had it figured.

Said if you wanted
out, you could get out.

But I'll tell you what
I'd do if I was you.

I wouldn't just stop
at getting out of jail.

I'd get right on out
of town. Both of you.

I'm paying high
for your head start.

Well, we're much obliged to
you for that, Keith, indeed we are.

I gun him, and I'm the only
one who tried to help his wife.

Well now, I guess that's
just about right, ain't it?

That corner window up there.

Sure pays being a
friend of the marshal.

- Yeah.
- Get yourself a nice comfortable room.

Well, time we got ourselves
throwed out of town.

As long as we don't get
ourselves throwed back in jail.

All the Marshal
wants is to be rid of us.

Safest thing is to let
him think we're gone.

You just leave it to me.

He couldn't tell Matt to
stand aside because...

because he shouldn't.

And he couldn't tell Frank to
just forget it because he wouldn't.

Can't Frank see it?

She'd be the first
one to tell him to stop.

Well, Kitty, a man does
something like this for himself.

The more he thinks
about it, the more he...

feels he's got
to do it, I guess.

Just doesn't make any sense.

Well, let me ask you something.
How do you think Matt would feel?

What'd he do if something
like that happened to you?

There we go. Doc.

You know, the more
I see of those two,

the more I'm beginning to
wonder if Frank's that wrong.

Uh, just stopped by to say
thanks for your hospitality, Marshal.

Yeah, we're that grateful.

All right, you've had
your say, get out.

Oh, we're fixing
to do that, all right.

No reason to stay now.

I got to say one thing.

I mean, four men
killed... Keith, shot.

Reardon may be
dying, and all for what?

A squaw.

Get out of Dodge.

Well, I sure hope
that this settles it.

Well, I wish it did too, Kitty.

I'm afraid this thing
isn't gonna be settled...

till either they're
dead or Frank is.

See you tomorrow, Newly.




It's me, Cane.

I got Lloyd here with me.

I sure wish Keith
could be here, too.

He can't though, 'cause the
marshal's still got him locked up.

Yeah, I wanted him to tell you,

he sure had an eye
for that squaw of yours.

That gets to you, doesn't it?

You ain't heard it all, though.

Come on down here, we'll
fill you in on everything.

Reardon, come on.

You want us?
We're waiting for you.

Hey. Hold up, there!

Mr. Reardon? What
the tarnation are you...

- Where are they?
- You hadn't ought to be out of bed.

- Where are they?
- Where's who?

Cane and Lloyd.

- Cane and Lloyd?
- Cane and Lloyd. I saw them.

Look at you. You're
bleeding like a stuck hog.

Keep away from me.

You couldn't have saw 'em, Mr. Reardon,
'cause Matthew, he run 'em out of...

- You was dreamin'.
- They were outside my window.

I'm telling you, you was
dreamin'. Here, let me help you.

He sure is making it
easy for us, isn't he?



He thinks he's seen them
two yahoos, Cane and Lloyd,

out in back of the Dodge House.

Well, I'll tell you something,

he's not the kind of a man that
sees something that isn't there.

Yeah, but he's bleeding
awful bad, Matthew.

I mean, real bad.

All right. Get a hold
of Doc, right away.

He thinks that he seen them
out in back of the Dodge House.


The exertion could kill him.

Well, he was a-certain,
I'll guarantee you that.

Matthew's probably
found them by now.


Oh, Matthew.

Find anything?

There's a couple of horses over
here, but I don't see anybody around.

Let's try this way.

He's almost out on his feet.

Didn't I say it? Running
will kill him for sure.

- What if it don't?
- How much can he take?

Let's get him into the barn.


Come on.


It's blood.

The only thing
missing is the details.

You want us to
fill you in a little?

You know, you was right.

You've been right all
along, about us, I mean.

It was all of us in on it.

All except Keith.

He wanted to help her.

I could hear her
scratching out there.

He's the one that wanted to open
the door, but I wouldn't let him.

You got back shot by the only
man who didn't name her squaw.

It's over, Reardon. You hear me?

It's over.

All right, hold it right
there. Don't move.

- We ain't done nothing, Marshal.
- He come gunning for us.


They just told me.

All of them, except Keith.

Yeah, I know. Festus,
get them out of here.

It's over.

Yeah, Frank, it's all over.

Well, how's he doing,
Doc? His heart still beating?

- Oh, fine. He's gonna be all right.
- Good.

I've been telling you myself for
a week now that I was all right.

Yeah, by golly you have, Frank.

What are you going to do
about that Keith fella, Matt?

Well, if you're not gonna
prefer any charges against him,

there's nothing I can
do but turn him loose.

I'm just glad I didn't kill him.

What now, Frank?

Oh, another day or two here,

then maybe I'll grab a
shave, head back to Montana.

Got a little piece of
land up there, Doc.

Had ideas of doing
something with it a while back.

Figure maybe I've put
it off long enough now.

- That sounds good.
- Good hunting up there.

Good fishing, too.

Maybe you and Doc will
come up and give it a try, Matt.

Say, you mention fishing
to me, Frank, and it's just like

pointing a thirsty horse towards
the watering trough, I'll tell you that.

Just don't say anything
about this to Festus,

and I'll be up there just
the very first chance...

Don't say nothing to
Festus about what?

- Matthew, what...
- Well, Festus, I'll tell you.

Frank, I just remembered
a few things I got to do.

I'll look in on you later.

Well what... don't say
nothing to me about what?

- You were eavesdropping.
- I wasn't dropping nothing.

And don't go changing...

Mr. Reardon, I don't know
what this old pill-pushing fake's

been telling you,
but let me tell you...

We was just talking about
hunting and fishing up at my place.

- Fishing?
- Yeah, well I...

Oh, and you was
going to keep it a secret.

Well, it's not very
polite for you...

You wasn't going to
tell me at all, was you?

Well, why don't you just
go ahead on up there.

It'll be good for
me to get a rest

from your a-ragging and
a-chewing and a-picking at me.

Just go on up yonder,
stay as long as you want.

In the first place, you don't
know nothing about fishing.

Who's gonna dig your worms for you?
Who's gonna catch your grasshoppers?

Stay tuned for scenes
from next week's Gunsmoke.