Gunsmoke (1955–1975): Season 8, Episode 24 - Blind Man's Bluff - full transcript

Billy Poe is falsely accused of murder by a dying man, and flees to another town while Matt follows him, and encounters dangerous resistance from other men who hate lawmen.

Starring James
Arness as Matt Dillon.

Hi, Doc.


How are you?

Pretty good.

I'll say one thing,
the looks of this place

is improving all the time.

What do you mean?

Sure got the best-looking
bartender in town.

I'll have a beer.

There you are.

Thank you.

Have you seen the
law this evening?

Yeah, he was in earlier.

Why, do you want to
see him about something?

No, not particularly.

I declare, I never
saw a man so lucky!

Skill, not luck.

With you, it's luck.

Don't be a bad loser.

I'm supposed to be happy

losing all my money
first night in Dodge?

Maybe you ought to get
the sheriff to protect you.

I don't see you getting rich.

We don't have a sheriff here.

We have a U.S. Marshal.

Well, that's just fine...

long as I don't meet him.

You know, I've just never
been able to understand

why a cowboy can't
resist coming into town

and getting in a poker game

and spending all his
money the very first night.

Well, if I worked
as hard as they do,

I'd make it last at
least two nights.

You'd think so, wouldn't you?

But it don't work out that way.

See, if it did, they just
wouldn't have anything

to brag about when
they get back to camp.

All right. I'll see you.

I'm in.

Three little fives, gentlemen.

I can't even win with two pairs.

There. Now I'm broke.

I can forget about it.

It isn't right I should
lose so much.

It isn't right.

Nobody forced you
to set in this game.

A streak of luck doesn't
make you a big man here.

Man's kind of nervous, ain't he?

Well, he's hotheaded, you know.

I suspect he's a man
with a conscience

and is feeling guilty
about gambling at all.

I don't feel guilty.

I just feel broke.


I never leave no man broke.

Have a drink.

Uh... I'll accept that.

Well, I think I'm gonna turn in.

All right.

- Good night, Kitty.
- Night.

Well, I got to be going.

You get another stake together,
you look me up, you hear?

Sure will.

If I ever get to Dodge again.

- Good night.
- Night.

And thanks.


Hey. Hey, mister, what happened?

Who... who are you?

Billy Poe.

What happened to you?

I hope you swing
for this, Billy Poe.

Me? No, I-I didn't do nothing.

I was walking along the
street, and-and I found you here.

They'll get you... for this.

You won't get by with it.

But-but it wasn't
me who done it.

Hey, mister. Mister!

Hey, look.

He's dead.

I didn't hear no gunshot.

But he's dead.

Hey, mister.

You better run down
to the marshal's office.

There's a man's been shot here.

Down there.


He's dead, all right.

Why do you keep saying that?

How do you know?

He's breathing.

How can you tell in the dark?

I don't need light to hear by.

You don't hear that good.

I tell you, he's dead.

What, are you
drunk or something?

Why do you keep saying that?

Now, cut it out.

It's not my fault
that he's dead.

Right over there, Marshal.

Yeah, Marshal.

Here he is, just
where we found him.

Yes, sir, laying there
deader than a doornail.

Well, that's Bud Hayes.


Bud, what happened?



Billy Poe done... hit me.

Now, Bud, don't you worry.

We'll get you up
to Doc's right away.


He's dead.

I knowed it.

He was dead all the time.

Any of you know a
man named Billy Poe?

Not me.

Is he the one that did it?

Now, keep an eye on
him, will you, for a while?

I'll send a wagon
back soon as I can.


Hello, Quint.

Hello, Matt.

You know, you
worked a little slower,

you wouldn't have to
drink so much of that stuff.

Maybe not, but
I'd starve to death.

Bring him on in, cowboy.
I'll take care of him.

It ain't the horse.

It's him I want to see.

What can I do for you?

Well, I just rode
in from Elkader.

I pulled in the saloon

down the street
there to have a drink.

And I heard you was
looking for a man.

A man named Billy Poe.

Well, I am, yeah.

He's in Elkader.

How do you know?

Well, a friend of mine

was going to have
a drink with him.

And he wanted me along.

And I forgot all about it

until I heard about him
again down the street today.

But you don't know him yourself?


It's a lucky break
for you, Matt.

First one you've had all week.


Thanks a lot, cowboy.

Thanks? Is that all?

What do you mean?

Ain't this man
wanted for murder?


Well, then, there ought to be
some kind of reward out for him.

No, no reward.

Now, look, Marshal, you
ought to give me something.

Sorry, cowboy.

Hey, Marshal?

I hope he shoots you.

Nice fella.


Sounds like you'll be
taking a trip to Elkader.

You want some company?

No, I'll manage
all right, Quint.

Well, I better get saddled
up. I'll see you later.

Good luck.


You looking for
somebody, mister?

Yeah. Where's the sheriff?

Well, he ain't around.

Where can I find him?

Well, the last he was seen,

why, he was
high-tailing it north.

Right back of him was
three drunken cowboys

to make sure he
didn't linger on.

The folks is still
talking about it.

How long ago was that?

Oh... six months.

Ain't nobody
wanted the job since.

That a good hotel down here?

Well, it's the only one.

Say, if you're looking
for a stable for your horse,

why, you'll find it
round back of the hotel.



You know, mister,

we don't make no
money here in Elkader,

but sometimes we sure
have a lot of fun with lawmen...

and strangers.

What'll it be, stranger?


That'll cost you... a quarter.

A quarter?

That's what I said.

I'll tell you, you can give
me about 25 cents' worth.

You outsmarted me.

Coming up.

Well, glory be.

A lawman.

A lawman in Elkader?

Now, ain't that
really something?

Could be he's after
the sheriff's job.

You after the
sheriff's job, mister?


We had a sheriff
here six months ago.

Got choused out.

Yeah, I heard about that.

Maybe you're here on
account of that sheriff.

No, no, no, no.

He's here to catch
some poor starving devil

that never even knew
he was doing wrong.

Ain't that right?

Never saw a man yet didn't
know when he was doing wrong.

Except a lawman;
he always does wrong,

but he don't never
seem to know it.

Let's get out of here.

The air's bad.

You're a U.S.
Marshal, ain't you?


Well, don't mind
them boys, Marshal.

They're always
looking for trouble.

Who are they?

Canby, Wells and Dano.

They got a little spread
outside of town here,

but you don't see
'em working it much.

Any particular reason
they don't like the law?

Some men are just born
hating the law, Marshal,

for no reason at all.

Yeah, I've seen that kind.

I expect so.

- Hello.
- Hello.

I got nothing against the law.

I'm glad to hear that.

You gonna be in town long?

I don't know. I haven't
made up my mind yet.

The last lawman I seen
in here bought me a drink.

He must have been rich.

Well, you look
like you got money.

Not that much.

All I can afford around
here is one drink.

Well, I've been wrong before.

Give me a drink.

Now, Davey, I gave you
your last drink an hour ago.

Either you put some money
up on the bar or go dry.

I got to have a drink.

You always "got
to have a drink."

I need something
to settle my nerves.

I-I seen something... bad.

What'd you see "bad"?

In the alley down the street...

I-I stumbled right
over him, just...

just laying there bleeding.


A man... at the
end of the alley.

He's shot or
stabbed or something.

This looks like something
in your line, Marshal.

Maybe you'd better show me.

I got to have a drink first.

I'll buy you a drink
after. Come on.

It's right down here,
Marshal, in the alley

by the telegraph office.

- Where is he, now?
- Right up here.

He's out cold.

He ain't about to fight again.

He never did fight back.

He never had a chance.
I got him first crack.

Let's go.

I brung him out, didn't I?

I set him up just like you said.

You did fine, Davey, fine.

Can-Can I have my dollar now?

I need a drink
something terrible.

Well, you come around sometime,
Davey, and I'll buy you a drink.

But you... you-you promised me.

You promised me a
dollar right here tonight.

Oh, now, you gave
us a lot of fun, Davey,

but a dollar's a lot of money.

You-you promised!

Make him pay me.

Please, make him pay me.

Suppose I don't.

Don't forget, I-I seen...

I seen everything that
happened out here.

In that case, you
better pay him, Dano.

Why, sure.

Come here, Davey.

Sure, I'll pay you.

His drinking days are over.

Give the marshal something

to worry about in the morning.

If he gets up.

Come on. Let's get out of here.








Hey, mister.



Hey, how would you like
to make a couple of dollars?

Doing what?

Sit down. I'll
tell you about it.

You look like you're sick.


I just had too much to drink,
and my head's killing me.

I can't see too good.

You don't look
too good, neither.

I feel dizzy all the time.

There ain't much I
can do about that.

Look, I just got to
get, uh, some sleep.

I got to get to a bed.
Then I'll be all right.

I... I just got to get
over to that hotel room.

It'll be worth
five dollars to me

if you'll help me over there.

Oh, no.

I'll get you over to the hotel,
but it won't cost you nothing.

Oh, good.

Come on.

Everything's blurry.

Hey, hey.

You ain't gonna pass out on
the street on me, now, are you?

No, I'm gonna be all right.

Hotel's right up here.

How do you like that?

I thought I hit him
hard enough to kill him.

Nah, he ain't
gonna recognize us.

He didn't see nothing.

What'll we do?

I'll think of something.

Right now I'm gonna
finish that beer.

Who is it?

It's me, Billy James. I'm
the fella who got you here.

I brought you something to eat.

You're sure
suspicious, ain't you?

Got to be careful,
Billy. Come on in.

Figure you must be
half-starved by now.

You slept six or seven hours.


Yeah, I needed it, too.


Billy, I want... I
want to thank you.

That was mighty nice
of you to bring this over.

Yeah. Can't let a man go hungry.

How you feeling?

Oh, I feel fine.

Just that I still
get dizzy and all.

The food ought
to fix you up some.


Well, listen, let me...

let me pay you for
this at least, Billy.

Ah, you can buy me...

a drink or two
tonight if you want.

All right, I'll-I'll do that.

You're a lawman, ain't you?

- That badge says "U.S. Marshal."
- Yeah.

Where you from?

Down around Dodge City.

Is that so?

I've been up on the Saline
River visiting a friend of mine.

I stopped by for a drink
on the way through.

That's what I should've
stayed with, one drink.

You ain't looking
for nobody, huh?


No, all I'm... all
I'm looking for

is to get rid of this
headache and this dizziness.

One thing's sure.

It's a gloomy,
miserable day out.


Yeah, it is, isn't it?

I-I heard there was a killing
down in Dodge about a week ago.

Yeah, that's... that's right.

Who told you?

A cowboy just drifting
through, you know?

Yeah, it's a funny
thing, Marshal.

He brought it up

when he found out
that my name's Billy.

He said they're looking

for a fella named
Billy down there.

Billy Poe.


Yeah, the dying man named
Billy Poe as his murderer.

You don't know anything
about him, do you?

No, I... I ain't never
been to Dodge.

Well, no, I mean around here.

You-you figure he's in Elkader?

Well, no.

No particular
reason to think that.

Well, I-I tell you
what, Marshal.

Let... let me do a
little snooping around.

Now, if Billy Poe is in
Elkader, I can sure find him.

No, no, that's...
that's all right, Billy.

I can... I can make another
trip down this way sometime.

Well, I'd like to
help you if I can.

Billy, you've given me
a lot of help already.


I don't know.

Maybe you can do
something for me someday.

You just name it.

Well, now,
you-you just sit tight,

and I'll be back before dark.

All right.

Billy, thanks for everything.

That's all right, Marshal.

- Who is it?
- The maid.

You want your room cleaned up?


Why don't you come back later?

Eating your dinner?


Yeah, I'm just having a bite.

Well, I've got to
clean up your room.

I'll get fired if I don't.

Say, it's a cheerful
day out, ain't it?

What's that?

I said it sure is a
pretty sunny day out.

I thought he said it was gloomy.

Are you not well, mister?


Just had a little too
much to drink yesterday.

Well, maybe I better
come back later.

You men.

You think of nothing
but trying to drink up

all the whiskey in sight.

I just never...


Miss, close the door
a minute, will you?


Well, what do you want?

Did you ever
happen to hear of a...

of a Billy James or a Billy Poe?


Well, tell me this, is
there... is there a back way

out of this hotel without
going through the lobby?

Yeah, the stairs down there.

Could you find me a
boy to run an errand?

Sure. Where to?

All right, you tell him
to go down to the stable,

get my horse saddled
and bring it back here.

Well, do they know
you at the stable?

Just tell them it's
the U.S. Marshal.

They'll know who it is.


well, my goodness.

I-I just ain't never seen
a U.S. Marshal before.

Miss, here, take this.

For me?


And you tell that boy there'll
be some of that for him, too,

but only if he hurries.

Yes, sir, I'll see to that.


you tell him to bring that
horse around to the rear,

and then you come tell me.

Yes, sir, I sure will.

- Hey.
- Hey.

You waiting for somebody?


Where's your friend?

My friend? Who's that?

The lawman.

The big marshal.

We seen you this morning,

going into the hotel with him.

So what's wrong about that?

And what business
is it of yours?

We don't like lawmen.

How come he's such
a friend of yours?

We can always give
you what we give him.

Oh, so that's it, huh?

So that's what?

He wasn't drunk
last night, was he?

He, uh, tell you he was drunk?

Yeah, he said he got sick
and dizzy from drinking,

but he didn't, did he?

Look, there's
three of us, and, uh,

we could take care of you
without any trouble at all.

Yeah, and we better do it, too.

Let's take him out to the
edge of town right now.

Go on, get moving.

Now, wait a minute, boys.

That marshal ain't
no friend of mine.

It's me he's after.

What are you talking about?

Well, I've been standing
here trying to figure out

some way to get
rid of him myself.

Yeah, and I'll tell
you another thing.

You boys sure gave him a
good going-over last night.

He can't see.


Yeah, he can't see; he's blind.

You're lying.

Why should I lie?

He's back in his hotel room
right now, blind as a bat.

I just left him there.

Say, uh, what he want you for?


But I didn't do it.

You know they'll
hang you anyway.

So, uh, you want to see him
dead as much as we do, huh?

We better go after him, Canby.

We don't have to.

Could you get him out
the back of the hotel?


Well, let's have
a couple of drinks

and plan this good, huh?

Hey, uh, give me a bottle.

Oh, there he is.

I got him for you, mister.

Oh, good boy.

Say, you really a marshal?

Yeah, yeah, I am, son.

I want to thank you

for everything you've
done, too, miss.

Would you give
that to the clerk?

It ought to cover the room.

All right.

Here, this is for you, son.


If anybody asks
for me at the hotel,

just tell them I
went down to Kelly's.

You could've walked over there.

- Son?
- What?

Look, uh, wonder if you'd mind

kind of leading me
out the back way here

and showing me the edge of town?

See, I'm kind of a
stranger around here.

Sure, Marshal.

I've got some money for you.

- What?
- Number ten.

He gave it to me to pay for
his room, and then he left.

What's that? Number ten left?

That big marshal.

What do you mean, he left?

Where'd he go?

Well, he told me that if
anybody asked for him,

he'd be over at Kelly's Saloon.

That's a lie.

Why, we just come from there.

We've been there
nigh onto a hour.

Well, he ain't been
gone quite that long.

Besides, he left by horseback.

Come on, let's go.

You know, for a blind man,
he's moving around pretty good.

Well, I guess he got
that maid to help him.

Yeah, and he's got

about an hour's
start on us, too.

If we're gonna catch
him before dark,

we've got a fast
ride ahead of us.

Well, come on,
let's get with it.


What's wrong?

Just want to make sure
we're on the trail, that's all.

Yeah, there it is.

It'll be dark directly.

He'll get away
sure in the night.

Even a blind man's
got to sleep sometime.

Come on.


Hold it, Marshal.

We've been looking
for you everywhere.

What can I do for you?

Well, uh, it's kind
of like this, Marshal.

Life gets, uh, tiresome
out on the prairie,

and, well, we,
uh... we just thought

maybe you could liven
it up some for us, huh?

What are you gonna do with that?

Billy? Billy, is that you?

Yeah, it's me.

Hold it!

Now, drop your
guns or I'll kill you.

I said drop them!

All right, now, turn him loose.

What's the matter
with you, Billy?

- Ain't he out to hang you?
- That don't matter.

I ain't gonna let you drag a
blind man or shoot him, neither.

Wait a minute. Hold it.

All right.

You boys want to have some fun?

I'll take you on,
all three of you.

Right now, no guns.

How's this, Marshal?

I won't let them touch you
if you give me your word

that you'll see to it that
I ain't never arrested.

No, I can't do that, Billy.

You must be crazy.


All right, come on.

All right, boys, I'll
take care of this.

I'm really gonna fix
you this time, Marshal.



You done it, Marshal.

What happened?

How long you been able to see?

Ever since he jerked me off
my feet with that rope there.

I must have hit my
head or something.

I tell you it's mighty good
to be able to see again.

Yeah, I can believe that.

What about them?

Well, I'll take them
back to Dodge with me.

What about me?

Have to take you
back, too, Billy.

You ain't serious.

You'll get a trial.

You're forgetting something.

I still got the gun.

I'll do everything
I can for you.

I'm leaving right now.

I don't think you will, Billy.

You do that, you'll be a
wanted man all your life.


I'll help you take
them back to Dodge.

- Hello, Quint.
- Matt.

Looks like you been busy.

Yeah, I have.

Want some help?

I'd sure like to get
these three locked up.

All right. Come on.

Marshal, it just ain't fair.

I don't even know the name
of the man that got killed.

Me and another stranger
was playing poker with him,

and he won.

And then I saw him laying
out there in the street,

and I went up to him, and
he asked me my name.

So I told him.

And then he blamed
me for hitting him.

Yeah, that's right.

He named you as his
murderer just before he died.

Yeah, but it wasn't
me who done it.

It could have been
that other fella.

Well, I got a description
on that man, Billy,

but he's just disappeared.

I helped you, Marshal.

You ought to try and help me.

I'm going to, Billy.

I'll do everything in
the world I can for you.

And if it was like
you said, well...

we'll get it
straightened around.

In the meantime, I'm just
gonna have to lock you up, Billy.

I got no choice.




Oh, hello, Kitty.

Hi, Doc. How are you tonight?

Well, I'm just fine, but I...
I've been looking for Matt.

You seen him?

No. Why?

Well, I promised him an hour
ago that I'd meet him for a drink,

and I... I can't
find him anyplace.

You know, he's been so
doggone jumpy since he got back,

I thought maybe I could

just kind of take
his mind off things.

Why don't we sit down here?

- Sam, bring us a beer over here, will you?
- Sure.

You mean, um, Billy Poe
and the missing poker player.


You know, I think, if
I've described that man

to Matt once, I've done
it at least a dozen times.

I have, too.

He's probably in Mexico by now.

He'd better stay there.

Here he comes now.

- Hi, Kitty.
- Matt.

- Doc.
- How are you? Have a drink?

No. Later, maybe.

Matt, what about Billy Poe?

What's gonna happen with him?

Well, Judge Brooking
just got into town.

I've been over talking to him.

When's he gonna hold court?

Tomorrow morning.

He wants to try
Billy first thing.

Did you tell the
judge the whole story?


Yeah, he said that if the
dying man named Billy,

that's all the
evidence he needs.

The hanging judge.

Well, he sent a
man to jail... once.

Billy's got you pretty convinced
that he's innocent, hasn't he?

He just about has, Kitty.


Bottle of whisky.

There's your
missing poker player.

You sure?

I'm positive.

See you later.

Wait a minute.

What do you want?

You look like you've been
doing a lot of drinking lately.

I don't see that's anybody's
business but mine.

If you can afford it.

I can afford it.

You work around here?

The name's Walker.

What do you want?

It just so happens that
you were in a poker game

a week or so ago with
a man named Hays.

He was murdered
later that same night.

I heard about it.

Billy Poe did it.

I don't think he did.

What are you trying
to say, Marshal?

I'll tell you exactly
what I'm trying to say.

Lot of people know
you were in that game,

happen to think you're the
one that murdered Hays.

The only reason you're
walking the street right now

is 'cause I can't prove it.

Let me tell you
something, mister.

If Billy Poe hangs for a
murder he didn't commit,

I'm going to come after you.

I'm going to track you down.

By the time I'm
through with you,

you're going to wish
you'd been on that gallows.

Get away.

I can get away any time.

You never will.

What time's Billy
Poe's trial set for?


Think he's got a chance?


What about the other three?

Yeah, the judge
is trying them now.

Billy will be next.

It's taken a long
time, but I... I am here.

This bottle was full of
whiskey, good whiskey.

It gave me courage.

Yes, sir, I got my courage
right out of that bottle.

Courage for what?

To come here and say that...

I'm the one you're looking for.

I killed him.

You killed Hays?

Yes, I did.

I just wanted to
get my money back.

I didn't want him dead.

Well, will you lock me
up, please, Marshal?

I can't think on it anymore.

Hey, Marshal, I-I don't
know his name, but...

but that's the other man
that was in the poker game.

I know, Billy. The
name's Walker.

I don't understand
this, Marshal.

I don't understand any of it.

Well, that's all right. He does.

You mean I'm free?

You're free, Billy.

I'm really free?

I can go?

You can go.

Thanks, Marshal.

So long.

So long, Billy.