Gunsmoke (1955–1975): Season 16, Episode 16 - Captain Sligo - full transcript

In one of the series' loopiest episodes, Boston whaling captain Aaron Sligo suddenly forsakes the sea entirely. He moves to Kansas, buys a ranch and ceremoniously sets up a plaque on the 100th meridian of longitude, which he says is as far from the sea as possible in the United States (true, but he could have moved farther north). He then becomes a cattle buyer, ordering a shipment of cows from Texas, while courting the widow next door. The widow resists his courtship until he proves that he can grow corn, knowing the soil on Sligo's lot is notoriously unfertile. But Sligo hasn't lost all of his seafaring identity or his skills. He still dresses in full uniform, builds his house in the shape of a ship, and brings his first mate along to serve as ranch foreman. When a rival cattleman pulls a dirty trick on Sligo which prevents him from bringing his cows to market (by spreading a rumor of brucellosis among the herd) and when the rancher's hands beat the first mate to a pulp, Sligo uses his pugilistic skills to even the playing field -- and some mysterious skill to get the corn to grow.

Announcer: Gunsmoke, starring
James Arness as Matt Dillon.


You're the blacksmith.

Yes, sir.

You really got some
outfit here, don't you?

The starboard horse got a
loose shoe on his portside aft.

Your what's got a what?

Ah. His left hind foot.

The shoe is loose. Now,
you fix it, I'll be obliged.

Uh, I'd appreciate it too if you'd
feed and water them while you're at it.

I'll be in the saloon.

You don't mean this
buffalo here now, do you?

If you please.

He'll eat anything.

I know. That's
what I'm afraid of.

Here you are.

Ah, that bison gives
you any trouble,

just prod him in the
hump with that harpoon.

His name is Shag. Mr. Shag.

What's your name?

Sligo. Captain Aron Sligo.

Drink, mate.

What'd he say his name is?


Sounds like
something you scratch.

Sligo is the name
of a county in Ireland.

As well as the name of
my paternal forefathers.

What'd he say?

Says he's got four fathers.

Now, which of you said that?

I did.

Any objections?

I'd best pay you now.

Two bits for the drink.

Have you change for a
$50 bill? It's my smallest.

I'm sorry, but when I sold
my ship in San Francisco,

I took large bills mostly,

and then I run out
of the small ones.

No change for a 50.

Day or two, we'll be jumping with
trail hands when the south herds get in.

But I ain't seen a $50
bill since last spring.

Drink's on me, stranger.

No hard feelings?

I'll owe you a quarter.

Oh, come on. Give me your hand.

Is that what you had in mind?

Blacksmith, summon the sheriff.

Ain't no law here, and there
ain't no jailhouse neither.

- This is Hoxie.
- Oh, I was afraid of that.

Here. Grab a leg.

Are you gonna tote
this old boy with ya?

And the others. To the
nearest law north of here.

Well, that's all the
way to Dodge City.

Fine. Fine. That's
where I'm headed.

Get ahold there now.

Heave... hup!

You know, sir, you go to totin'
these old boys bellies-down like this,

40 mile up the road, they're gonna
be dead by the time you get there.


The Lord giveth, and
the Lord taketh away.

Will you lookie there?

Newly, you and Manning
take the southeast corner here.

Stay between
Bucklin and the river.

And, Burke, you and Abe
Kelton take the southwest.

Either of you need me, I'll be
between Kingsdown and the line.

Matthew, you ain't
gonna believe this,

but they's a buffalo out
yonder in the Dodge street,

and that ain't all neither.

They's three fellers
hogtied on top of a wagon.

Good lord.

Now, hold on a
minute. Just a minute.

Get out of here!

No need for alarm, folks.

Mr. Shag, he just can't
stay away from pretty ladies.

Come on. Shag, come here.

Come here, Shag.

- Come... Come on.
- Come on. We better look into that.

Come on. Shag.

Come on.

All right, now who
in thunder are you?

Captain Sligo is my name.

Captain Slig...

Well, what... These men
been gunshot, or what?

No, I don't use a gun. I drubbed
them when they tried to rob me.

Where'd this happen?

At Hoxie Station, ma'am.

Some distance to the south.

Do you mean to tell me that you
packed these men 40 miles like this?

Well, it's the least I could do
in the interest of law and order.

They could have died.

No, that'd be too
much to hope for.

What's wrong with these men?

They've been hurt, Matt.
They need some help.

What's happened to 'em?

Well, you might say I did.

They jumped me at Hoxie
Station after my money.

What do you wanna
do with 'em, Doc?

Well, you figuring
on jailing 'em?

Might as well for
the time being.

All right, I can take
care of 'em over there.

All right, give me
a hand here, boys.

Say, you got an
old bald-noggin',

spavin-shanked friend,

a patch over one eye, going
by the name of Watney?

I'd say you got him about right.

My name's Sligo.

Well, of course it is.

After listening to
his slackjaw all week,

I feel like I know about twice as much
about you as I'll ever have any need for.

I take it you didn't make my bosun's
acquaintance while havin' him locked up.

Locked? Oh, no.

No, me and old Watney got
acquainted whilst building a fence

out at the Widow Burney's place.

See, her place is
right next door to yours.

Well, wait, wait,
wait one minute.

Mr. Watney is supposed to
be building us a ranch house.

Well, that's what he says, but if that
there thing's any part of a ranch house,

I'm a... two-footed angleworm.

What it is is a big old tall

maypole kind of a thing.

He's... He's built
himself a masthead, is all.

He said he would. Right
on the hundredth meridian.

No, no. It's built
right on the ground.

The hundredth meridian is an
imaginary line. You can't see it.

That's why I came
here in the first place.

Always said I'd build my house
on the hundredth meridian.

As far as I could
get from both oceans.

Well, if you can't see it, how in
the tarnation do you know it's there?

It's the hundredth
degree of longitude west.

It has to go right by the
Widow Burney's front porch.

Now, on the final tack...

Northeast, quarter east.


♪ As I was a walking
down Paradise Street ♪

♪ A pretty young lady
I happened to meet ♪

♪ I hailed very nimbly ♪

♪ She answered me clear ♪

Ow, it can't be.

It is!

It's Captain Sligo, mates!


Thar she blows!

Hang easy,
Mr. Watney. Don't fall off.

Break your back and my heart.

- Captain! Captain!
- You old fool!

Swinging around up
there like a gooney bird.

I knew you'd be along today.

I proper knew it all the time.

Oh, sure, you did.

It's what I wrote
you in my last letter.

Might have been right...
Not six hours off me estimate

and right on course.

Well, I knew you
would. Here, Captain.

Captain, I dropped our
anchor right on the 100th.

Look what you did here.

It's beautiful, man. Beautiful.

Oh, I haven't had time
to do all I hoped for, sir.

A few setbacks, mind you.

Barnacles. And a real
bad wind out of the west.

Oh. The Widow Burney's.

Aye aye, Captain.

First name's Josephine.
She got two kids, she has.

Oh, sad thing.

Um... good looking
woman, is she?

Well... Oh, she's
got a mouth on her

which would powder the new
sap from a sugar maple tree.

Um, how old do you say she is?

Well, 60 if she's a day.

I wouldn't even advise
you to take a look, sir.

Bad as that, eh?

Oh, that bad, Captain.

Well, the fact is, Mr. Watney,

I have got to talk to her about
that thing she's building there.

She can't be any uglier
than her board fence.

Oh, wait'll you see her,
sir. You wouldn't believe it.

You wouldn't...

Oh, here she comes.
Here she comes now, sir.

Huh. Well, come
along, Mr. Watney.

Let's welcome her aboard.



Bosun, it appears as though
you need a closer look at the lady.

Oh, I've had me as close a
look as I could wish for, sir.

You're a lyin' swab, Mr. Watney,

and you need a taste
of ship's discipline.

Now, come along.

Are you the famous
Captain Sligo?

At your service, madam.

And you, I take it, are the
renowned Widow Burney.

May I say that your
husband's unfortunate demise...

Thank you, kindly, but I would like
to know, without further pleasantry,

just what you intend to do about
that monstrous abomination of a thing.

The mast? Well, the
first thing I'm going to do

is convene a captain's mast.

- Mr. Watney, step forward.
- Aye, sir.

Captain's mast... You mean
he built that thing for you?

Silence, madam!


Just who in the name of
heaven do you think you are?

Did you estimate this
wo... this lady's age

at "60 if she's a day"?

- Aye, sir.
- What?

And did you say her mouth
would powder maple sap?

- Why, you old hoot owl.
- Aye, sir.

And did you state that she was
even uglier than her board fence?

No, sir. I didn't. You did, sir.

- I did not!
- Begging your pardon, Captain.

All right, if I did, you compelled
the comparison, did you not?

- Aye, sir.
- Well.

Mr. Watney, you will confine
yourself to quarters on bread and water

until eight bells.

Aye, sir.

The poor man.

Well, it has to be done...

if we're going to
run a tight ship here.

Way he talked about you and
couldn't wait till you got here,

and you treat him like that?

That's none of your affair, Tim.

Is so, Ma. Mr. Watney's
a friend of mine.

He didn't mean any
harm, Captain Sli.


You didn't have to do that
on my account, Captain.

And he certainly is entitled...

Entitled to his opinion of
my age and appearance.

Don't you like Mr. Watney?

Like him?

Laddie, Mr. Watney's
my dearest friend in life.

He lost his eye saving
me from a whaleboat

in which I lay stunned while a sperm
whale was smashing that whaleboat

and most of my long
bones into kindling.

Using his flukes
like a broadsword.

What's his flukes,
Captain Sligo?

His tail. Horizontal tail
is peculiar to whales.

Now, what sticks out on
either side, that's a fluke.

So is your little tail about
Mr. Watney, if I'm any judge.

And if you're a whaling captain,
why aren't you out whaling?


they found oil in
Pennsylvania, for one thing.

I like him.

Me too. Better than the others.

A lot better.

Harpoon gun, and I began
to feel sorry for the whales.

That's when I pointed
my sea bag east.

Always did figure to spend
half my days on the sea,

and the other half
on the good earth.

That seemed the only way to
give each one equal benefits.

Your modesty is almost
as capacious as your mouth.

How come you picked
here, Captain Sligo?

Geographical center
of the nation, Tim.

You gotta talk
plainer-er, Captain,

if you're gonna court my ma.

Anne Burney!

Well, everybody 'round
Dodge tries to court you,

but me and Tim
don't like any of 'em.

You aren't married,
are ya, Captain?

Uh, I'm perfectly free
to court your mother.

I'll hear no more of it.

And I'll thank you, Captain, to stop
putting such ideas in my children's heads.

I did nothing of
the sort, madam.

I'd barely got the idea of
courtin' ya set in my own mind.

Never mind theirs.

Well, you can get
it unset right now.

And you still haven't explained
why, with 800 acres to build on,

you and your bosun
have to pick this spot

to put your eyesore

as close to my front
door as you can get it.

Well, ma'am, this is apparently
the only point on my property

that's crossed by the
hundredth meridian.

And I told Mr. Watney
when I sent him on ahead

to build no other place but
smack dab on the old hundredth.

I've never heard of anything
more ridiculous in my life.

Not at all, ma'am. Never crossed
old hundred yet it wasn't good luck.

But, uh, it is too bad they
had to build that right there.

Now, since you don't
care about the meridian,

have you ever thought of maybe
moving your house someplace else?

Move my house?

You have the arrogance to
propose that I move my house?!

It's only a suggestion, ma'am.

When I make a proposal,
there'll be no mistaking it.

I find your presence as
oppressive as that eyesore.

A crow's nest is
what it is, ma'am.

You can see storms coming,
tornadoes, hostile forces

long, long before they get here.

Keep an eye out
for the livestock.

You haven't got any,
except that buffalo.


And there's a man coming from
Texas at this very minute with my herd.

Now, Mr. Watney got
'em real cheap, he tells me.

Captain Sligo,

that crow's nest is
dangerous and useless,

and you will either remove it
or I will take drastic measures.

Mrs. Burney.

Any idea what that mast means
to an old sea dog like Mr. Watney?

He's getting old.

Keeping watch will give him a
sense of pride and responsibility.

He built that masthead

to keep a weather eye on
his dreams and his memories,

to make believe he sees
whales instead of bison,

white caps instead
of jimson weed.

And you tell me to tell him
to tear that masthead down.

No, ma'am. I'll
be danged if I do.

If you don't,

I'll dam the creek above my house
and shut off your entire water supply,

and I have every right to do it.


It appears as if
I'm danged if I do...

and I'm damned if I don't.

Aw, Ma, that crow's
nest ain't hurtin' nothin'.

All he wants is a nest
for his Watney, Ma.

Excuse me, ma'am.

If you could help us. We're
looking for a man named Watney.

Aye, you come
to the right place.

- Who might you be?
- Captain Aron Sligo.

That's the name, all right.

Captain Sligo,

my name's Leonard, from Texas.

This here's Mr. Tanner.

We got 500 head
of cattle for you.

Mr. Watney said you ordered it.

Fine. Fine, fine.
You got 'em where?

Well, just outside
of Hoxie Station.

That was the deal. $7 a head below
the line, you drive 'em up yourself.

What line you men talking about?

This is Mrs. Burney.
She's my neighbor.


You mean the Kansas border line.

$7 a head is certainly
a very cheap price.

Now, now, now, now, Mrs. Burney,

these men are simply
being courteous enough

to offer me a savings
if I choose to take it.

I'm just trying to understand.

Mrs. Burney, if you please.

I am perfectly capable of
handling my own business.

Especially since it is clearly a
man's business and not a woman's.

Well, I'm sure you boys'd be liking
a drink now, after your long ride.

I've got something in my wagon.

Jamaica rum, gentlemen.

Take the hide off
a whale's hump.

Why, thank you kindly,
Captain, but we gotta get going.

I tell you what.

You show up at Hoxie Station
with that money tomorrow morning

and we'll buy you the drink.

So be it. Pleasure, gentlemen.

Ma, you forgot to be neighborly,

not inviting the captain and
Mr. Watney to dinner tonight.

Well, uh, nobody's perfect.

- Ma.
- Please, Ma?

Of course.

He's invited.

I will ring the bell loudly.

Come on, children.
You have chores to do.

I accept, madam.

Mr. Watney
respectfully declines.

He has first watch.

Lovely woman.

But unfortunately
possessed by the Devil.

Mr. Watney.

Watney: ♪ I waved her me
flipper and took her in tow ♪

♪ Yardarm to yardarm,
away we did go ♪

♪ And as we were
going she says unto me ♪

♪ Here's a spankin'
four-rigger that's ready for sea ♪

What other kinds of whales
are there besides a sperm?

Well, there's the right whale,
the humpbacked whale,

the razor-backed whale,
the sulfur-bottom whale.

Now, those are the big ones.

And that leaves the grampus,
the thrasher, the killer.

And a sperm whale's
worse than the killer?

Oh, much worse.

They've been known to ram
and sink full-size sailin' vessels.

The head of the sperm whale is
the world's greatest battering ram,

and his tail the world's
most dreadful whip.

That's what happened to
Mr. Watney's eye, Captain Sligo?

Mm. Six other men in that whaleboat
were killed outright or drowned.

I would have been drowned myself

if Mr. Watney hadn't dived
down and pulled me up.

I think we ought to let
the Captain eat his dessert.

Those men today,

doesn't it seem suspicious
that they offered them to you

for only $7 a head?

Not at all, ma'am.

They're busy men dealing with
thousands of head of cattle every day.

Now, my 500 head just wasn't
worth their while driving up,

so the savings is mine.

They didn't look all
that prosperous to me.

Dirty shirts and...

I judge a man by his demeanor,
not by his small clothes.

Do you have to raise your voice?

As long as you continue
raising my hackles.

Has it occurred to you that I might know
something about cattle dealing in Kansas?

Something you might not know
having just arrived this afternoon?

Something that might explain why
they're willing to give you such a bargain?

You miss the point, madam.

I'm sure you're stuffed tight as a
pork sausage with essential knowledge.

Just as I claim my sovereign
right to take on knowledge

as I see fit.

And not have it rammed down
my throat like poor Adam's apple.

Can't we talk about whales?

It seems that's all we
can talk about, Tim.

All that Captain Sligo
knows or wants to know.

Blast it, woman. I will not
be patronized nor mocked.

Captain Sligo,
stop hollerin' at Ma

or she'll womp
you with a skillet.

If you will just
refrain from profanity,

I will be happy to drop the subject of
what's wrong with the cattle you bought.

Fine with me.

Now, if you could just
arrange to lose your broomstick.

Do you wish to
leave now or be civil?

Now, by your imperial leave.

No. You promised
to tell us a story.

A nice bedtime story
about daddy whales.

Hmm. A daddy sperm whale...

Ah, the daddy sperm whale.

Starts out as a
young bull whale,

swimming in a herd made up
entirely of young bull whales.

Now, when he reaches his growth,

he sets about rounding
up a herd of female whales.

This herd is called a harem.

The daddy whale is absolute
lord and master... school master...

Over this harem of females.

You mean he captures
them because he's bigger?

Oh, females are no more than
one third the bulk and magnificence

of the full-grown bull whale.

So when he spouts, they listen.

But they're females, after all,

and pretty soon the daddy whale

gets weary of all the bickering and
back-biting going on among the females,

and when he's
had all he can take,

he flukes them a
"Fare thee well, ladies,"

and quits the females forever.

And swims thenceforth
in solitary splendor alone

among the watery deeps and
ramparts of the great ocean world.

That was lovely.

Wasn't that lovely, children?

And now it's bedtime.

Say goodnight.

Good night, Captain. Thank you.

Good night.

Good night, Captain Sligo.

Good night, my darlin's.

Yes, good night, Captain.


You're still here.

Is there anything else?

In fact, there is.

Port wine. The
finest in the world.

Will you join me?

Thank you, no.

My daddy always said, "Good for
humility to have a drop now and then."

Saves you from the
pride of total abstinence.

All right.

May I call you... Josephine?

You may not.

So be it.

Do you hate all men?

Or only the best of us?

I do not hate man or beast.

But I do detest male conceit
or presumption in any form.

You have mistaken me, madam.

It is not conceit but pride,

and not presumption...
but willingness.

You are willing to
be only one thing.

Absolute lord and master.

Like the daddy
whale in your story.

When you spout, I must listen.

I didn't invent natural law.

Nor even vote on it.

Then stop trying to enforce it.

You come out to my farm
today and into my house

as if you're going to move right
in and set everything to rights.

Beginning with me.

And who was I to
question or complain?

After all, everyone knows a
two-year widow with two children

can't wait to give herself
to the first male beast

who comes along
to take pity on her.

But I had no such intention.

You'd refuse to court
me... if I'd let you?

Well, ma'am,

a man would have
to be a fool to do that.

A fine looking woman
like you, prime of her years,

- That's enough.
- First two of her children

- big enough to bear a hand...
- Close enough, too.

I said that's enough!

Mrs. Burney, I'm a
simple, direct man.

When a thing has to be done, trim
your sheets and do it, I always say.

I'm quite content
trimming my own sheets.

You find me unattractive, madam?

I find you... unnecessary.

And now, goodnight, Captain.

Goodnight, Mrs. Burney.

And the masthead
stays where it is.

Then I'll dam the creek.

I swear it.

Swear it? You've stopped the
flow of everything else around here.

Why spare the creek...

any more than you
spared yourself?!

Of all the insufferable,
overbearing, bullheaded...

Let him buy those Texas cattle.

Let him find out for himself.

I count 500 head.

I count me 480 is all.

Mr. Watney doesn't miscount.

Well, I tell ya what, Captain.

There's 25 or 30 extra head
down at the drover's camp.

We'll throw 'em in for
fair measure. How's that?

Fair enough.

500 head, that's, uh, $3,500.

Well, thank you, Captain. It's a
pleasure doing business with you.

There's your bill of sale.

Now all you gotta do
is pay off your drovers.

And, when you're done with 'em,

just sit back and watch them
doggies eat themselves fat.

They tried to short-count
us, is what they did.

Failed, mind ya.

But still look a bit too
satisfied for my taste.

I took notice.

There may be a few less
down at that drover's camp,

but the price is
certainly fair enough

to make up for any petty
cheating if that's the case, huh?

Oh, aye, sir.

You mean to tell me they
moved the quarantine line again?

Since last summer.

Twice since then.

Used to be nine, ten
mile north of Dodge.

Now it's 15 south?

It don't make sense.

Here it is here,
Bender. Read it yourself.

I don't make the laws, Bender.

I know you don't, Marshal.

Well, I'll just have to drive 'em west
to Colorado territory and then up north.

- Long as you stay south of the line.
- Right.

Afternoon, Marshal.

Captain Sligo. Mr. Watney.

I just got stopped by
one of your outriders.

He tells me I can't take my new
herd of cattle any farther north.

Now, he must be an
imbecile or a practical joker,

and it's a bad day for either.

Are they Texas cattle?

Yeah, bought 'em from
a dealer at Hoxie Station.

Well, then I'm afraid what my
deputy told you is right, Captain.

See, those cattle
have splenic fever.

It's otherwise known as
Texas or Spanish fever.

They look perfectly
healthy to me.

They are, Captain. Texas steers
are immune to this type of tick.

Kansas steers seem to roll
over and die on you, though.

Ah. Well, then all I've got to do is
keep Kansas steers away from my steers.

Well, I'm sorry, Captain,
but it doesn't work that way.

You see, the state legislature
forms a quarantine line.

There's no exceptions.

You mean I can't take my own
cattle through to my own land?

That's right, sir.

That's outrageous
to law and civil liberty.

There's nothing right about it.

Well, right or wrong,

I'm afraid you won't be able to
take those cattle to your place.

You can take 'em west,
east, or south, but not north.

You hear that, Mr. Watney?

That's the law of
the land talking.

Pirates defraud us, and now the law's
making sure that we stay defrauded.

You weren't defrauded, Captain.

Those cattle dealers didn't
do anything that wasn't legal.

And who did? The ticks?

No, I'm afraid you got
exactly what you paid for.

Just too bad that nobody warned
you about buying south of the line.

Somebody tried to,

but she just couldn't overcome
her natural duplicity long enough

to say the thing straight out.

And, as usual, there
is no legal remedy,

so we'll have to try to
invent one for ourselves.

You mean for the Widow
Burney or was it for them ticks?

Perhaps for both,
Mr. Watney. Come along.

That's better.

I think, Mr. Watney,
I'll deal with this alone.

You'd best return to the ranch.

Alone? Captain, you
want my opinion...

I consider this to
be a personal matter.

You will go directly
home, Mr. Watney.

Aye. Aye, Captain.

Do you mind if I
water me horse first?


Evening, boys.

My name is Sligo. Captain Sligo.

How would you like for the drinks
to be on me the entire evening?

Well, sure thing, Captain, as long
as it don't mean hurtin' and bleedin'.

No, no, no.

In a couple of minutes, you
go into the saloon, up to the bar,

two or three at a time,

and, uh, just act generally
as if you know me.

Any question about money,
you send the barkeep over to me.

Well, you got a deal.

- Yes, good deal.
- Couple of minutes, huh?

Okay, if you're not
gonna drink, I am.

- Ha.
- Three eights.

Evening, gentlemen.

You know what?

I've got some steers and fever
ticks to sell you, Mr. Leonard.

$7 a head.

No, no.

You can have the ticks for
nothing. Now how about it?

You may be tough, Captain
Sligo, but you ain't that tough.

- Evening, Captain.
- Evening, boys.

- What'll it be, boys?
- Whiskey...

My time is very short
tonight, gentlemen,

so I'm afraid I'll have to add
25 cents a head to the price

at irregular intervals
during our negotiations.

As of this moment, it's
seven and a quarter a head.

- Hi, Captain.
- Hi.

Are those two...

Them fellas over there
said the drinks was on you.

- Is that right?
- It's an old habit of mine, bartender.

A man works for me,
I pay for his liquor.

There'll be a half
dozen more drifting in.

Yeah, that's enough
to get you started.

You bet.

That's $7.50 a head, gentlemen.

And remember, no
charge for the ticks.

Hello, Captain Sligo.


Listen, that was a legal
and binding deal, Sligo.

7.75, gentlemen.

You know this is, uh, out
and out robbery, don't ya?

$8 a head.

And on the next increase, we
start a surcharge on the ticks.

All right.

All right, you got a deal.

You can't go wrong on
Texas steers, gentlemen.

Where's the herd, Captain?

The same dry gulch
I bought them in.

Just pay off your
drovers, gentlemen,

and then sit back and watch those ticks
eat those doggies right into the ground.

Good night.

Well, thank you, gentlemen.

Uh, if those two blaggarts
should try to follow me,

just kindly knock
them down, huh?

Uh, yes, sir, Captain.

That should take care of
the balance of the evening.

- Right.
- Goodnight.

- Good night.
- Good night, Captain.

Night, Captain.

Uh, good night.

♪ Don't never take heed
of what pretty girls say ♪

♪ As soon as a pocket... ♪

Hey, sailor.

You know, me and
Tanner got to thinking

that maybe you're
missin' your whaling days,

and so first Tanner's gonna whale
you... and then I'm gonna whale you.

Mr. Shag.


what if Mr. Watney brings
you to mate, Mr. Shag?

You doubt it?

Can't say as I blame you.

Hard to find bison these days,
the way they're being slaughtered.

Same as they did the whale.

Cries to heaven for vengeance.

Oh, I know, I know.

You don't really want a mate any more
than other male beast in his right mind,

but there's your duty to
the species, Mr. Shag.

To get sons wants a
female, and vice versa.

Ah, but it's a terrible
ordeal, Mr. Shag.

Ah, but the good Lord
never said it would be easy.


Speak of the Lord and
the Devil bends sail.

The Widow Burney
affrighting the morning.

She knew all about
those ticks, Mr. Shag.

Ah, but then women
are not as you and me.

Good morning, Captain.

Where are the cattle you bought?

Good morning, Mrs. Burney.

Where is the herd?

The herd...

is infected with odious little
vermin with fevers from Texas.

I declined to take possession.

Tick fever.

If you knew, why
didn't ya tell me?

I didn't know.

I guessed.

That's why they made
you come get them.

But I returned the favor
and turned a fair profit.

Didn't Mr. Watney
come back with you?

No, ma'am, Mr. Watney
left somewhat before I did.

If you'll notice,

I haven't started the dam.

Well, the threat is almost
as effective as the fact.

In some ways, more so.

You can use the threat
over and over again.

But once you built the dam, then
you'd have to poison the well...

I'm trying to be nice.

Uh, uh, uh. Here come
the children, bless them.

What you need is about ten more.

How dare you tell
me what I need?

Ten sons in eight
years. Keep you fit.

Fit? For what? Early burial?

Fit to live with. You got an excessive
amount of bile, the way you are.

I've got to keep you
standing the full jib

or you'll have me down by the
bow before I clear my roarin' forties.

Will you please stop talking
in that intimate manner?

I don't want ten sons,
least of all your ten sons.

And I'm not a brood mare.

Little fleshed up.

But a handsome beam and a fulsome
hammock is what counts, right, Mr. Shag?

I require ten sons.

You throw in Tim,
that leaves us nine.

Give you the full eight
years for nine instead of ten.

Now, that leaves
you a full 15 months

to lie around fallow,
doin' nothin' at all.

Why, you monstrous
ham-headed oaf.

I'd die before I married you.

And I predict we'll be married
before this corn is scupper high.

That corn?

That corn will never grow.

Oh, that's a terrible
thing to say to a man,

putting a curse on his corn.

Of course it'll grow!

Oh, will it?

All right, you loudmouth bully.

I'll marry you.

The day that corn
is shoe-top high.

Oh, I tell ya, Mr. Shag,

I've got my flag on her now.

She's right about the
corn, Captain Sligo.

It will never grow.

Not the way you planted it.


If it doesn't grow, that mean
you never gonna get married?

Captain Sligo?

I will not be brow
beaten into marrying you.

I can't stand you!

Or your bosun or your bison!

I can't stand your
foolish vanity.

Or your roaring forties.

And I'd start
praying if I were you.

To learn to humble
yourself before the Almighty

gets sick of the
sound of your pride

and sends down a pain
big enough to humble you!

A sorrow sad enough to
drive you to your knees!

Captain, Captain!
It's Mr. Watney.


Oh, Captain.

A pain big enough to
humble me, I believe you said.

A sorrow sad enough
to drive me to my knees.

Oh, I have it, madam.

I have it.

I didn't mean it, Captain.

I'm... I'm sorry
for what I said.

I'll have them for this.

I'll find them, Mr. Watney.

And I'll... I'll number
all their bones.

Are you trying to tell me that
Captain Sligo's blaming you

for what happened to Mr. Watney?

No, thanks, Sam. That's fine.


If he does, he has
a perfect right to.

If he does, he's
out of his mind.

Oh, I don't know, Kitty.

I was threatening to have
the crow's nest torn down.

Which made Mr. Watney
feel bad, and so he got...

Oh, come on, now, Jo, really.

I've heard all about the crow's
nest and that wild buffalo.


Oh, excuse me. Bison.

You're even beginning
to think and talk like him.

So are the children.

They just love the captain.

He is actually, Kitty,
quite an extraordinary man.

You mean aside from being crazy.

He's not crazy. He's just a man
out of his proper place, his element.

The sea.

You suggesting he
go back to the sea?


Not till he's
established his family.

He wants ten sons.

Ten sons.

Ten children won't do.

That's right.

And when you hear him talk about it,
Kitty, you know how much he wants them.

He's convinced you, Josephine?

Yes, I guess he has.

That he should
have them, not me.

You sure he hasn't
convinced you about you?

Throwing in Tim, that's
nine sons in eight years.

That's the schedule.

Fifteen months off
lying barren, or whatever,

but a full jib the
rest of the time.

And you still
say he isn't crazy.


- Sam, whiskey.
- There you are, Captain.

Madam, Mr. Watney's life
was saved by Dr. Adams.

Thank God.

I have urgent
business in the south,

but I wish to ask Mrs.
Burney if she'll be so good

as to keep all references
to my cattle dealings,

including names of principals
and so on, strictly to herself.

Especially from an acting deputy
marshal with a canvas-backed,

wide-brimmed bilge
bucket for a hat.

His name's Festus Hagen.

I'm sorry, Captain, but I'll
make no such promise to you.

You will make it. Why wouldn't
you? It's none of your business.

- Yes, it is.
- How so?

Well, I'd rather
not say just now.



You mustn't go after
those men alone.

Instead of repeating yourself, I
suggest you make arrangements

with a dress maker here in Dodge

to be measured
for a wedding gown.

I'd rather be measured
for my winding sheet.

Fine. As long as it has the
look of a flying jib full of wind.

That corn'll never grow anyway.

Miss Kitty, was that
there the captain?

That's him.

Well, I wanted to talk to him
about them bushwhackers.

He's headed for Hoxie Station.

Probably to get himself
killed. You better get Matt.

I'll do just that.

On your feet, you blackguards.

I suppose you'll be wanting a
written complaint on this too, Marshal.

Well, Captain, you're just gonna have to
learn to let the law handle your problems.


Matt Dillon in charge of bad
bellies, fever ticks, rustlers,

and Sligo in charge

of whales, mastheads,
widows, and dam sites.

Oh, I'd say that corn is gonna have to
grow to save face for all here, though.

- Corn?
- What are you talking about?

Ten sons.

Give or take one there already.

Uh, might make
it 11, though, huh?

Ain't shoe-top yet, Captain.

Ma's comin'. Like
you told us to.

But she ain't in good
kettle, Captain Sligo.

The word is fettle, and it
depends on whose shoe tops.

- Ahoy!
- Ah, here she comes now.

Ahoy, Captain.

Madam, I have a
thing to show you.

I can't believe it.

I trust you haven't forgotten
your promise, madam.

But I said shoe-top high.

Well, in a week's time,
shoe-top high and more.

Just in time for our wedding.

But we aren't even engaged yet.


Both: Aw, Ma.

Thank you, children.

Come on.

Just about time for
that long-delayed trip

to the Dodge dressmaker.

Up, madam. Up.

I can't go like this.

What about the
children? The livestock?

All is arranged
for by Mr. Watney.

Captain Sligo, did you transplant
some sweet corn from my patch?

Nope, he didn't.

But Tim and me, we
planted Captain's corn right.


Well, I don't know, I'm sure.

It certainly isn't my idea
of how to get engaged.

Madam, are you going to
be my wife a week hence,

or do I have to
flog you into it?

You're not being very romantic.

- Woman...
- Yes.

Yes, what?

I'll... I'll marry you.

With all the jibs flying.

- Bye!
- Goodbye, Captain.

- Goodbye!
- Bye-bye.



What is it now?

I just happened to think,

"What if the first
nine were girls?"


Great St. Elmo's
flickerin' fire, madam.

Abandon the thought.
Sons, madam. Nine in a row.

Do you think I want to
spend the rest of my days

doing nothing but
getting babies?

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