Gunsmoke (1955–1975): Season 16, Episode 17 - Mirage - full transcript

Festus fatally wounds an outlaw deep in the desert, then finds himself without water when the outlaw dies. Making his way back to Dodge City, Festus hallucinates and may have killed the innocent young Adam Cleary before reaching Dodge. Adam's father, Lemuel comes to seek revenge, and Festus cannot remember what happened.

Announcer: Gunsmoke, starring
James Arness as Matt Dillon.

Hey! Deputy!

Must have a rock-hard belly

the way you've been
crawling along that ground!


First your mouth, Deputy,

then your nose get bone-dry.

And they swell up.

And then they crack open.

And you get loony in the head.

And then you die slow.



Freezing cold at night.

Just ain't no comfort no place.

You listening to me, Ruth?

I'm gonna find us a way out.

And we'll be back in Dodge...

and... and then...

you and me...

you and me...

Dodge City, Ruth.

I ain't gonna make it.

You're gonna have
to go it on your own.

Ain't no sense in
both of us dying.

Go on now. Go on.

Go on, Ruth.

Ruth, now go on
like I told you to.

You good for nothing old...

Shoot, Miss Kitty.

Doc couldn't catch no fish

if it... if it jumped
right out of the water

and bit him on the finger.

Kitty: Festus, you
look plumb wore out.

I am tired, Miss Kitty.

Been helping old Joe
Mosely fix his fence.

Kitty: Well, how 'bout a beer?

What's that you're
saying, Miss Kitty?

Matt: Eli Maddox was seen down
near Voxes Station in the Territories.

Ain't you got to go
to Hays, Matthew?

Kitty: Here you are, Festus.

Much obliged, Miss Kitty.

Matthew, I can track down
that Maddox feller myself.

No trouble at all.

Doc: Look at that one.
That's a good three-pounder.

Tell me again about my
store-bought feather hooks.

Oh, fiddle, Doc.


Ain't nothing real.


I'm gonna get you, Maddox!

Why was you shooting at me?!

I wanna know who you are!


you ain't even real.

Here you are, Ruth.
You get the rest of this.

You're gonna be the
one to get us out of here.

Here you are, partner.


"Adam Cleery. Ridgetree."

Yeah, well, Marshal, Festus was plumb
out of his head when I first found him.

He was rambling on about
Gila monsters and vultures

and somebody a-shootin' at him.

Didn't make no sense at all.

Found him out in
the salt flats, you say?

Yes, sir, and dying of thirst.

And these animals almost went crazy
when they had the first smell of water.

Well, we're grateful
to you, Mr. Stocker.

Marshal, Doc sent me.

Festus has come to, but
he's still in pretty bad shape.

He says you can speak to him
for a minute or two if you want.

- Thanks again, Mr. Stocker.
- My pleasure, Marshal.

Festus, it's still
not clear to me.

You say you were
tracking this Eli Maddox,

you had a shootout with him,
and you buried him in the desert.

I don't know, Matthew.

My head's all muddledy.

Well, think back. Try to
remember this second man.

I ain't sure that he
even was a second man.

Oh, there was one, all right.

At least that horse
you brought back

had a name and a town
printed on the saddle.

It was "Adam Cleery"
and "Ridgetree."

Like I told you,
they was this...

this here ghost town.

And I hunkered
down in the desert.

There was this here gun shots.

And that laughing...

laughin' like Maddox done.

It's all jumbled and mixed up.

Try to remember.

It was... shots...

coming from...

every which way.

And I shot back some.

Only it was... It was...
coming from a old

rickety store building.

It's all mixed up.

And... there was this...


Except he was looking
just like Maddox.

running like a river.

He just don't seem real at all.

Well, the horse was real enough.

Now, what about the gun
and somebody shooting at you?

I don't recollect no gun.

Funny, I don't
recollect no gun at all.

But you remember the body?

I don't remember no gun.

Maybe that there town

wasn't even real neither.



I better ride up and
check out this hill town,

this Adam Cleery fella.

What do you think
about him, Doc?

Well, I don't know. He's in a
complete state of exhaustion.

Well, I'm gonna ride up and see if I
can find some answers to some of this.

Festus: Matthew...

It just had to be that
second feller I killed.

Just had to be.

Well, if it was, Festus,

sounds like it would
be self-defense to me.

I ain't so sure, Matthew.

I know this sounds mixed
up the way I've been telling it,

but it's all the
information I could get.

See, my deputy was pretty badly
hurt when they brought him in.

I just can't believe it.

A cow's all he went off to buy.

Just a cow.

Where is this ghost
town, Marshal?

Well, as I understand, it's about
15 miles south the Kansas line.

It's out in the desert. A
place called Dry Creek.

I'm saying...

I can't believe my son was
shooting at your lawman.

Well, my deputy was in
a shootout. That's clear.

He just...

just buried him dead?
Didn't bring him back?

He wasn't in shape to bring
anybody back. Not even himself.

Well, what are we
supposed to do, Marshal?

I mean, you bring a
horse and saddle back...

We just stand here?!

Told my son is buried
out in the desert.

Mr. Cleery, it might help if you
could tell me where he was headed.

To buy a milk cow.

He started to Packard

or to Methusulah if
the price be better.

Had himself $26.

He was gonna fetch
us back a good milk cow.

All right, that's
where I'll be heading.

To do what, Marshal?

You said my brother got
himself killed by your lawman.

Well, there are a few things I
don't understand here either.

For instance, what was your
brother doing in that ghost town,

and why was he
shooting at my deputy?

How soon will your
deputy be up to see us?

We've got, uh, got questions
ain't been answered.

He wasn't in any shape to
travel. Be a while before he is.

He was shooting at your
deputy trying to kill him, you say?

My Adam.

That's the way I understand it.

Adam never owned a gun.

And he wouldn't even
shoot at a jackrabbit.

Much less a man.

Where's the gun he was
supposed to be using?

I don't know that
either, Mr. Cleery.

I'm sorry.

I want you to know we ain't
satisfied with what's been told here.

I understand how
you feel, Mr. Cleery.

Nobody's sure of anything yet.

I hope I'll have some
answers by the time I get back.


Don't make any sense, Pa.

Adam never shot no living soul.

You heard from Matt at all?

Yes, ma'am. I got a wire
from him a little while ago.

He talked to the Cleery's, and it
seems as though the boy was headed

for Packard or Methusulah.

Marshal Dillon is trying to
pick up a trail on him now.

Festus, what are you doing out
of bed? Doc said that you was...

I know what that old
scudder said, Miss Kitty,

but I can't just be a-layin' up
there on my backside doin' nothing

but thinking about what I've
maybe seen and maybe didn't.

I'm gonna check the street.

Festus, you're in no
condition to be doing that.

Now, Newly, don't you
start a-chompin' on me, too.

It ain't no more tiresome
turning doorknobs

than it is thrashing
around in that bed up there.

Well, wait a minute.
I'll go with you.

No, you ain't neither now.

I ain't sick, and I don't
need me no nursery maid.

You know, sometimes
I think that man's head

is made out of solid marble.

And maybe that's
why he's still alive.

Mr. Hagen?

Deputy Festus Hagen?

That's right.

Uh... my name's Cleery.

Lemuel Cleery.

I'd like to talk to
you about my son.


Mr. Cleery, I
gotta say that I...

You, uh, got your
horse stabled here?

Sure. My old mule.

- But...
- You get him saddled up.

It'll be a friendly talk,
Mr. Hagen, if it's straight talk.

We're camped
just outside of town.

Mr. Cleery, you ain't
got no need for that gun.


Get your mule saddled up.

Mr. Hagen, there's three
kinds of people in the world...

The good ones and the bad ones

and, well, the in-betweens.

You and me and Elsie and Tom,

we're... we're in-betweens.

Most folks is.

And then there's the bad ones.
There's quite a few of them, too.


the good ones...

the ones that

wouldn't do no wrong
thing to hurt nobody

and they're full of smiles and joy and
just make you glad to be with them...

Well, there ain't many
of them, Mr. Hagen.

There just ain't many
of them kind at all.

Not enough so as
we can let them die

and bury them deep in the ground

and say I'm sorry and forget it.

So if my questions offend you,

well, you've just
got to bear with us

'cause we got to know.

Well, Mr. Cleery, you
told me about the marshal

riding south down to that town

where your boy was headed.

Appears to me like it makes
sense to wait till Matthew gets back.

We'll see what he's got to say.

Where's the gun, Mr. Hagen,

you said my boy was
shooting at you with?

That there's another
thing I can't answer.

There just wasn't no...

I mean, I don't remember no gun.



Adam's pouch.

It's the one Elsie made for him.

Found it in
Mr. Hagen’s saddlebags.

It is the one I made for him.

- There's $2 left.
- Maybe, Mr. Hagen,

you can explain or not
remember Adam's money pouch?

I remember.

I remember... but I
forgot that I had it.

Mr. Hagen, there's
in-between kinds of truth, too,

but I kinda doubt it, you
and Adam's money pouch.

And you just can't seem
to remember anything

so we'll be heading
for that town.

We catch one lie in your throat,
it's gonna be by the good book.

Eye for an eye.

Get the team hitched up, Tom.

Mr. Cleery, you
just got to know...

All I know is I got me one fine
son dead by you, Mr. Hagen.

Ain't us standing in the
Lord's light, it be you.

For judging.


I didn't take your money, ma'am.

Well, I did, but then,

I just forgot that I put that old
pouch in my saddlebag, that's all.

Plain old dumb cow.

I was the worst
going on about it.

Would've given us milk.
Never had much of that.

Cream for the coffee, and
could've churned for butter.

No more water
biscuits and water gravy.

Don't be going
on about it, Elsie.

Anyway, it's mostly my
fault he's buried out here.



It was here that it happened.

That's blood on the floor, Pa.

He died right here.

Rememberin' any
better, Mr. Hagen?

It does seem like maybe
this here's the place.

Will you prove it? Maybe
think it be the truth?

Way it's gonna be?

My remembering
kinda comes and goes.

Remember any better on the gun?


What gun?

The gun you said Adam had!

You buried it with his body!

Oh... oh, no.

I don't believe so.

The money he
had... brought it back.

The gun you said he
had... That don't come back!

Don't figure I'm gonna be
getting a whole lot of sleep

all trussed up like this.

Don't reckon nobody's gonna be
getting too much sleep, Mr. Hagen.

Till we get some proper answers.

I've been a-tellin'
you the truth.

Everything I could recollect.

Been saying your
memory comes and goes.

By first light, you better be
coming up with some answers.

Been laying here thinking.

My mind won't shut
up. It just keeps going.

Flittering 'round.

Elsie, try and get some sleep.

Loving Adam way we did,

all we can think of, he's dead.

And we ain't looking at it from
Mr. Hagen’s side too close.

What's that mean?

Elsie: I mean, if
it weren't Adam,

but somebody we didn't know,

maybe we'd be
believing Mr. Hagen.

You're saying Adam
really was shooting at him?

Hard to fix in my mind.

Adam didn't even own a gun.

And there is no gun.

I keep thinking...

Mr. Hagen didn't have to ever
say he killed and buried Adam.

Just say nothing.

Except he showed
up with his horse.

Adam's name right on his saddle.

Could've said he
found it wandering.

Probably he figured

bad memory would
be just as convenient.

I'm thinking now about
what's proper to do.

Maybe in the morning
getting Mr. Hagen

to show us where he buried Adam,

give him a Christian
burial, and go home.

That what you want?

Some words said over
Adam and just go home?

I loved Adam as
much as anybody, Pa.

It's what she'd want.


And I don't ever wanna
hear about no cow again.

Never again.

It looks kinda the
same, but I ain't sure.

You said you marked
it with a shovel.

I did.

You be remembering that much.

I remember...

I think I did.

But there ain't no shovel.

Just keep digging.

Dug a grave so deep
being hardly alive?

That's the way you
told it, Mr. Hagen.

I don't remember it
being this far down.

Can't be that far down, Tom.

- What did you do with my son, Hagen?
- No, Pa.

- What'd you do with my son?!
- No!

Why's he playing games, Pa?

- Why's he doing it?
- It ain't a game, Tom.

If Adam's got a
bullet in his back,

Hagen can't take us to
the right place, can he?

- Howdy, Marshal.
- How do?

Room's 50 cents. Tub
of cold water's a dime.

No thanks. I don't
want either one.

I'm just looking for a
little information on a man.

A man named Adam Cleery.

Adam Cleery.

He was here. August 5th.

You seem to remember
that day pretty well.

I ain't likely to
forget it, Marshal.

He was about the wildest
kid ever to hit this town.


Howdy, Marshal.
Something I can do for you?

Yeah, I was looking
for the sheriff.

Well, he should be
back any time now.

Out picking up and escaped
convict named Kittridge.

Kittridge? Not Joe Kittridge?

Yeah, that's him. Know him?

Well, sure. He robbed a freight
office in Dodge a couple of years ago.

I'm the man that
sent him to prison.

Well, he broke out
a week or so ago.

Hit, I guess, making the escape.

Found in the Williams'
barn all shot up.

Not what you came
about, though, I guess.

No, no. I wanted to get some
information on a man named Adam Cleery.

Well, maybe I
can help you there.

He gave this town
quite a working over.

Pulled a knife in a card game,

shot my partner
deputy trying to jail him,

and for good measure, set
fire to the livery riding out.

Was a posse sent after him?

Well, sure. I was in it.

Lost him some place south
the old Dry Creek town.

You know, a deputy of mine was
riding through Dry Creek the other day

and somebody
started shooting at him.

That must have been Cleery.

Probably saw the badge and figured he
was part of that posse and started firing.

My deputy killed him.

Man: Here they come.

Oh, bringing in Kittridge now.

I guess we'll be keeping
him at Doc's place.


- Newly, what are you doing out here?
- It's Festus. He disappeared.

I figured he went over to Cleery's,
but their place was deserted.

I've been looking
for you ever since.

He never said
where he was going?

No, sir, he just disappeared.
Never said nothing.

Well, if he's with the Cleery's, I've
got an idea where they're headed.

Newly, there's
some mistake here.

Go tell the sheriff
that's not Joe Kittridge.

I'm sure obliged
to you, Miss Elsie.

I'm only doing it because
you're a man and not an animal.

I reckon you're the
onliest one that thinks so.

I don't understand
nothing that's happening.

Got no whys or wherefores.

I've been telling you
the truth, Miss Elsie.

Well, you better start pulling
those memories back into place.

'Cause if'n you
don't do it quick,

you ain't gonna be leaving here
walking up straight, and that's a fact.

Not when my pa and
Tom get back from digging

and still not finding Adam.

Miss Elsie...

if your pa was to kill me,

it would be just plain murder.

He ain't here, Tom.

Adam ain't here.

- We still got...
- It's no use. He ain't here.

- Pa...
- I got something to do.


Leg feels awful shakety.

Don't know if I can hardly walk.

Better do more than just walk.

- I sure am thanking you.
- No time for that now.

You just better get. Your
mule's down the street.

No, Pa. No.

It ain't right killing him.

All lies, Hagen!

All lies...


All lies.

Stand up, Hagen.

Mr. Cleery, you got...

Hold it, Cleery. Drop the rifle.

I got me a right here, and I'm
doing it. I don't care if you kill me.

Well, that's exactly what I
will do if you pull that trigger.

Been protecting
this deputy all along.

Got more... more lies in his
throat than he can swallow!

Drop that rifle before your
whole family's arrested for murder.

Please, Pa.

Pa! Pa, I found the grave.


I found the grave, Pa.

And it ain't Adam.

Ain't... ain't Adam?

It's nobody I've ever seen
before, Pa. Ain't Adam.

- You know him, Marshal?
- Yeah, I know him.

He's an escaped convict
by the name of Joe Kittridge.

Then where's Adam?
Where's my son?

Mr. Cleery, I think
your son may be alive.


Just like that, made me
change clothes with him.

Oh, that bushwhacker.

Then shot me.

Oh, the Almighty was sure
with me making it to that farm.

Got a lot to be
thankful for, boy.

We all have.

Hey, big sister.

Mr. Cleery: Marshal.

Thank you, Marshal, for letting
me see to Adam getting home.

I'll be coming back down to
Dodge and let the law take its way.

All right, Cleery.

I hope your boy gets well fast.


Mr. Hagen, there ain't
too much a man can say...

except he was wrong.

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