Season 1 Episode 5

Enter Mark Twain

Aired Saturday 7:30 PM Oct 10, 1959 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

out of 10
31 votes
  • Sam Clemens comes to town to write for the Territorial Enterprise, just before a judicial election. A local railroad tycoon is trying to buy the election for his "pet judge", so he can steel the Ponderosa. The Cartwrights and Clemens have other ideas!

    This episode has lots of different elements: Drama, action and lots of comedy. There are also some real history elements thrown in. This particular installment is somewhat unigue, as well, in that a non-Cartwright character plays a larger role than any other the series regulars.

    One of the more comic scenes, that is very memorable, is one which takes place at the Cartwright dinner table, after Adam has brought home a boy he found wandering the ranch. After Adam caught sight of the homeless youth, he attempted to run from him, eventually tumbling down the side of a ravine and knocking himself unconscious. Adam bring him home, slung over the front of his horse and hands him over to Hop Sing to clean him up. During dinner, Hop Sing comes in from the wash house, all in a tizzy. It seems the "boy" Adam brought home has turned out to be a girl! Adam's reaction and expressions are priceless!

    Another moment that I particularly enjoy, every time I watch this one, is the monologue of Clemens, while the Cartwights are defending him and fighting off the bad guys at the newspaper office. Clemens is thinking out loud about the river boats traveling along the Mississippi River and hits upon his inspiration for his pen name, Mark Twain. I don't know if this is an hisorically accurate account of how he came up with it, but it is a great bit of dialogue!
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