The Young Riders (1989–1992): Season 2, Episode 8 - Requiem for a Hero - full transcript

Cody's hero (Pernell Roberts), a legendary figure from the Old West, teaches him about responsibility.

This place gets bigger
every time I come here.

New buildings, new faces.

Yeah, not too long ago this
place wasn't more than
about 100 people

and a bunch of wooden shacks.

Well, progress has its virtues.

May I have your attention,

Oh, what's going on?

Ladies and gentlemen,
what you see before you is the
future, the Henry repeater.

The most accurate, the
most deadly, the most sought
after gun on the plains.

And one of you, the best
shot among you, will walk
home with this weapon today.

Who's next?
How about you, sir?

Keep them coming. Who's next?

Who's next for a chance
to win the finest rifle
in the west?

Give me a chance, man.

- What about you, young lady?
- I'll have a shot at it.

Maybe we should move
the train, huh, folks?

- That's the best so far.
- Could be a winner.

Change your target, boys.

Take your time.

Concentrate, Cody.

All right, Cody!

- Mighty fine shootin', son.
- But not good enough.

Mighty fine.

Didn't even touch it.

Let's see the target!

I appreciate you takin' the
extra time to admire my
handiwork, but...

No offense, but it's not your
handiwork I'm interested in.
It's mine.

I'm afraid evidence of that
is in short supply.


Now I want you to take
a good close look,

because this bull's eye
belongs to both of us.

My bullet went clean
through the hole.

Now you can believe
a train went through
there if you like,

but I'm gonna take my rifle.

I can prove it.

All right, I want you to
put the target 10 yards
further back.

Now, if I put my lead clean
through the hole again,

the rifle belongs to me,
no questions asked.



Bull's eye.

I only heard of one man who
could shoot like that.

Seems to me a fellow your age
should've learnt by now

that you can't believe
everything you hear.

How many of them do you
think there were?

- Shootin'?
- Mmm.

It's hard to say.

Don't look like they was
aimin' to kill
anything, though.

How can you be sure?

'Cause there ain't no bodies.

Two of your Indian police
were here.

Whoever was firing did it to
scare the Indians away.


Probably for
the Indians' own good.

I guess...

I can't expect him to
appreciate what my men do,
being a half-breed and all.

Judgin' from the looks
of things, bein' appreciated

ain't somethin' you or your
men do too good, is it?

This is the third attack on
my men in less than a
month, marshal.

I'm aware of that, Webster.

I think it's time I took
matters into my own
hands, don't you?

- I don't trust him.
- A lot of people don't.

But that don't mean
somebody can go
around shootin' at his men.

That depends on exactly
what his men are doin',
don't it?

- What do you think
you're doin'?
- Eatin'.

No, ma'am.
Not till you wash up.

Ike and buck don't mind.

We ain't been asked.

Would you kindly get outta here?

Go on!

Go on.

I'm tellin' you, the man
who won that rifle was
Hezekiah horn.

Don't you two understand?

That he is the greatest
plainsmen and rider
the west has ever had?

I mean, he's the greatest
rider of all time,
if you asked me.

Look, if this old guy is
such a great rider,

then how come he look like
he spent half of his
life in a cave?

Maybe, maybe this fella
just looks like heza...

Hezekiah horn.
And he don't just
look like him.

Even if it was him,
it didn't seem like he was too
anxious to talk.

You comin'?

Well, I was hopin' I could
stay another day,

if you boys' would cover for me.

I'm gettin' tired of takin'
care of your business

while you go off
followin' your dreams, Cody.

Now, one day, this is goin'
to have to stop.

But today...

Thanks, Noah.

How about I buy
the winner a drink?

Thanks, but, no thanks.

Well, then how about I buy...

Hezekiah horn a drink?

Well, now.
What have we here?

Afraid that won't
be possible, son.
That man died a long time ago.

What are you talkin' about?

You're like, a hero.
I've read all your books.

Oh, have you, now?

Now, puttin' words down on
a piece of paper doesn't make
a man a hero, son.

They do to me.

What's your name?

William f. Cody.

Can't tell you how many
times I've thought
about meetin' you, Mr. Horn.

Well, then you'll be sorely
disappointed talking to me.

I don't understand.

A lot of things changed, son.

Me, the world, changed.

Not necessarily for the better.

But we got things in
common, Mr. Horn.

I mean, your writin'
means a lot to me.

Oh, I see.

Well, then...

We, um, haven't got things
in common after all.

Mr. Cody.

"The west had never seemed
more dangerous than
it did that day.

"The Indians told us that
no one had ever gone further
up the snake river gorge.

"Half of my own men
quit, sure that it would
be suicide.

"Winter was only a month away,
but the land ahead
beckoned me.

"What beauty would we find?
What unspoiled treasure?

"I had learned to never be
surprised by what this great
country had to offer."

Go on. Go on, get.

How long you been watchin' me?

Long enough to see what
you were gonna do with
your furry friend.


Different people would've done
different things.

Some would've screamed,

some would've run,
some would've just killed it.

Now an Indian agent,
he'd kill it and...

And poison the young.

Well, I just figured he was
here before me, that's all.

Looks like we might
have something in common,
after all.

So, you writin' any new books?

- Nope, no more books.
- Well, why not?

'Cause the ones I
wrote already done
enough damage.

What do you mean?

Your writing's one of
the reason I came out
here in the first place.

Your books,

they make the land come alive.

And it's been dyin' ever since.

The people follow
the trails I blazed,

but respect for the land
is somethin' they never had.

We seem to be a country
of people who'd rather
build a new house than

clean up the mess in
our own backyard.

I'll tell you somethin', son.

You need a lot of strength to
take responsibility for the
problems we've caused.

It seems to me, today we just
have a bunch of men
who are just,

I don't know, too damn weak.

Then, what are you doing here?

Me? I don't know.
Getting stronger, I guess.

All right, Mr. Cody, I have
something very interesting
I want to show you.

These are kiowa knots.
Used in the rituals for life.

I don't understand.

Rituals for life,
you understand now?

No Indian is capable of this
kind of degradation.
Only the white man.

Easy, son. Stand easy.

They friendly?

Would you be?

- What'd he say?
- There was a fourth
man in the hunting party,

that escaped, found
his way back to his village,
and told them what happened.

That man over there
is his brother.

He said that
the Indian police did this.


Because they can.




You got something to say, kid,
or do you just like
the sound of my name?

I was wonderin' if I could
ask you a question?

You just did.

It's got to do with Lou.

Oh, well, it's about time.


We were wonderin'
when she'd finally
start closin' in on you.

Some of us even made bets.

Who won?

Uh... Lou.

Glad to see I could provide
you all with such amusement.

Ah, we ain't making
fun of you, kid.
We're rootin' for ya.

Well, then, how about giving
me some advice?


What do I do now?

I wouldn't worry too much
about that, kid.

In my experience,
events just kinda got a way
of workin' themselves out.

Well, I ain't you, Jimmy.

It was easier before, you know?

First time I asked Lou to
dance, she kept backin' off.

- But now...
- Yeah?

What do I do now
she stopped backin' off?


It's just a few more miles
to Sweetwater. You sure you
don't wanna come?

No, I think I'll be better off
out here.

Well, maybe I could come out
and visit you sometime.

Yeah, well, look, I'm gonna be
coming in for supplies.

Maybe I'll see you then, huh?

Uh, look, son,
it's nothing personal.

I just, uh,
need the quiet, that's all.

Hold it! Hold it right there!
Hold it!

What the hell do you think
you're doin'?

Those are kiowa
you're chasin', Webster.

They'd signed
a treaty a while back.

Those Indians are part of
a renegade band

that's been attackin'
my Indian police
at their tradin' posts.

Stealin' everything
they can get their hands on.

You got proof of that
or you're just takin' matters
into your own hands?

Last I heard, I didn't need
permission from you to
chase down Indian renegades.

He was just a boy.
The fourth member
of his tribe to die today.

I'd say the Indian police
are working very hard
in these parts.

Cody, who's your friend?

Hezekiah horn.


I'm happy to meet you,
Mr. Horn and sorry
about the circumstances.

No more than I am.
They are murderers, you know.

My men firing on those Indians
was wholly justified.
They were attacked...

With what?

Perhaps you,
and the great Hezekiah horn

would like to spend time
debatin' the kiowa treaty.

The government's given me
a job to do.

Well, I'll make sure they
hear how you're doin' it.

Well, I guess I better
tend to that dead brave...

No, I'll take the boy
back to his people.
That's the least I can do.

I hear tell you're quite a
legend among the Indians.

Yeah, well, I wonder
they don't kill me

for all the pain
I've brought down on them.

Two riders right now!

Ike? Ike?

No. Kid an' Lou can take it.

There's a government package
at the redford station.

You'll have to
spend the night there.

Go on.

Louise, this might come
in handy.

What is it?

A surprise.

You know, me an' ike
were up next.

I know, kid asked me
personally for this ride.

Was takin' Lou his idea,
or yours?


I knew he'd figure it out.

Well, Mr. Cody,
haven't seen you around
in these parts for awhile.

How's the most famous writer
in the west doin'?

It was him, you know.


Hezekiah horn.

I've heard of him.
Among our people,
he's considered a great man.

A lot of people consider him
to be a great man.

The problem is, right now,
he ain't one of 'em.

What are you doin'?

Just lookin' for somethin'
that might make him
change his mind.

Mr. Cody.

Oh, I'm sorry,
if I disturbed you.

Disturbed me?

What we saw out there
today disturbs me.

You're just a visitor,
Mr. Cody.

I was hopin'
I could be more than that.

I was hopin' that
I could be your friend.

I'm afraid it's a little late
for that. Another book?

First one you ever wrote.

Would it have been the last?

I always got a special feelin'
when I read that book.

Forget it, son.

The words, how I felt
when I wrote this...


Leave it alone.

What'd you do that for?

- 'Cause it's over.
- What is over?


The west.

Nothing left but
a lot of debts
nobody's willin' to pay.

You're wrong!

The west is just
gettin' stronger.
Cities are growing.

- Progress is...
- Progress?

Let me tell you
about progress, boy.

When the telegraph gets here,

you and a lot of other folks
are gonna be outta work.

Is that progress?

See what we've done to the
Indian? The Mexican?

How we're on a verge
of a civil war,

because of what we did
to the African?

In California they're doing
the same to the Chinese.

Is that progress? This rifle.

This rifle can kill people
faster than any other.

You call that progress?

Come on, boy. Can't you see
where it's leadin'?

No, I guess not.


My book,

this rifle,

my body.


If that's the way
you feel about everything,

if that's the way you feel
about that rifle,

then why'd you try
so damn hard to win it?

To keep it out of
the wrong hands.

For how long?

Every store in the territory's
gonna sell that rifle
before the year's out.

That's tomorrow, Mr. Cody.

I'm worried about today.

Come on!

Shoot me!

That's what this is all about.

Come on!

You're goin' awfully slow
there, kid.

Just admiring the view.

- Somethin' on your hat!
- Hey!




Since when did Webster
and his men get so generous?

Gettin' shot at would make
most any man charitable.

Most any man, maybe.
But, Webster,
I gotta doubt it.

Wonderin' if I could have
a word with you.

What's Hezekiah horn
doin' in Sweetwater?

Passin' through
as far as I know.

You a friend of his, or what?

I don't see what business
that is of yours.
After all, he's not an Indian.

He's more an Indian
than you or me.

- You got a problem with that?
- You bet I do.

Then I suggest you
take it up with him.


Mr. Horn!

Mr. Horn!

You're leavin'?

- No reason to stay.
- Well, yes, there is.

Why? So you can hang around
mooning about how you read
all my books,

treating me like some
kind of a hero?

- You are a hero!
- I'm not!

I'm just a man,
like anybody else.

And your thinking otherwise,
is just a bit more weight
than I am willin' to carry.

Hell, I can't even handle
the responsibilities
I already got.

Then why don't you let me
try to help you?

It's too late!


What're you doin' here,

Doc and I was wondering
if you would give us a hand,
Mr. Horn.

Doin' what?

We're headin' out
to the kiowa village.

We need somebody
who can speak the language.

Where's buck?

Buck's on the run.

Word has it,
villagers are real sick.

What do you mean, sick?

Don't look good.

That's not gonna do any good.
The medicine's
not goin' to work.

Do you under...

Tell her the poultice
won't do any good.

She wants to know what's
wrong with the child.


I think these blankets
may be contaminated.

Like them ones they sent
to tribes on the Missouri?

Teaspoon, can you track down
the source of this shipment?

Yeah, I know
where they came from. Webster.

How do you know that?

'Cause I saw a few of his men
unloading them back in town,
and giving 'em off to braves.

It ain't the boy's fault.

Look, how it started
doesn't matter now.

What we got to do is
stop it from spreading.

I mean, we've got to set up
a quarantine until we can get
a serum from St. Joe.

We gotta burn the village.

I'll get to work.

It's perfect.

We tell the Indians we wanna
put 'em on a reservation
so we can help 'em.

What we're really doing is
getting them together, so
it's easier to kill them.

Like shooting fish in a barrel.

All right, son. You said you
wanted to learn from me.

Learn from this.
This is the kind of evil that
comes with progress.

I'm afraid he's right, son.

What kind of a monster
passes his evil
on to children?

Here, burn this
with everything else.

It's my blanket, John.
You're safe.

I don't have anything
to say to you.

What you did today speaks
loud enough.

I went to the Indian village.

It's time you saw the way
the world works, old man.

Is that what the government
pays you for?

To destroy the Indian nation?


No, they pay me for planting
the seeds of a new nation.

How I do it is up to me.

Ah, yes, progress.

That's right.

And those that stand
in the way of progress,

just have to be plowed under.

Not this time!

You gave your words
to the world,

but somehow,

you always ran out
of them around me, didn't you?


Oh, no.

Are you telling me,

that you've done all this,
just to punish me?

You really think
you're that important?

Thank you.

You've given me the strength
to do something

that I should've done
a long time ago.

No, don't make me responsible
for your actions...

I'm not.

I'm holding myself
responsible for your actions.

Forgive me, John.

I'm sorry.

Forgive me.

You okay, Lou?

I don't know.

Couple of hours ago,

the most important thing
on my mind

was gettin' on with
what we'd been puttin' off
for so long.

Me, too.

Seems like
endin' all that waitin'

was more important to us
than the reason
we wanted to end it.

Do you think we made a mistake?

No. No.

I don't sees we could have
done anything else, anyway.

But things are gonna be
different between us now.

Maybe better...

I love you, kid.

I love you too, Lou.

And that's, uh,
$3 for the room, right?

You can pay when you check out.

I'll pay now.

Much obliged.

New suit, sir?

Afraid not, son.

This suit is probably
older than you are.

Anybody know what happened?

No, but I make
pretty good guess.

What are you saying?


Same ones been
shootin' at us all along.

I wouldn't be so sure.

I'm sorry about your friend
leaving town and all, Cody.

What do you care?
You don't even know his name.

Yes I do. Hezekiah horn.

I even picked up
one of his books.
He's quite a fella.

Maybe you could read
one of his books
out loud to us, Cody.

Oh, I don't think so.

He was so bent on takin'
it all back. Somehow,
it just doesn't seem right.

It's a shame.

His life always seemed
so free to me.

You know, traveling the land,
and seeing things
that most men don't.

I just can't figure
how it made him so unhappy.

Maybe he just saw too much.

There's been
a shooting in town.
Webster' dead.

Teaspoon thinks it might have
something to do with Hezekiah.

Jimmy, I gotta go alone.

Whoa, whoa.

Where's Hezekiah?

Get out!

What's it say, son?


"I told you I was
through writing,

"but this needs to be said.

"I talked about progress,
bringing men who acted
like there was no tomorrow.

"Men who just kept
moving forward

"without ever attending to
what they left behind..."

I realize that killing myself

is not the answer.

But I couldn't live
with it anymore.

I couldn't die without
settling my own account.

John Webster
was a child of circumstance,

who had the misfortune

of being born to
the wrong people
at the wrong time.

His pain and suffering
became the scourge and horror
of the Indian nation,

and my personal responsibility.

I took his life because
I didn't know what else to do.

John Webster was not
only my responsibility,
and my demon,

he was also my son.