Bonanza

Season 1 Episode 26

The Avenger

0
Aired Saturday 7:30 PM Mar 19, 1960 on NBC
9.2
out of 10
User Rating
33 votes
1

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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Ben and Adam are in the Virginia City jail waiting to be hanged for murder. The only witness is the dead man's daughter who claims she saw the Cartwrights do the killing. Attempts by Joe and Hoss to get them out are hindered by the townspeople's fear of the true murderer and his gang. A stranger arrives in town on a mission to avenge his own father's murder, takes a liking to Ben, and comes to their defense.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • A hero out for revenge saves the Cartwrights' necks.

    9.5
    Vic Morrow is a loner, known only as Lassiter because that's the town in Kansas where he comes from, who is out to avenge his father's brutal murder at the hands of a band of cutthroats, led by a cattle baron.. Along the way he stops in town where Ben and Adam are about to hang for a murder they didn't commit. The daughter of the murdered man claims she witnessed the incident, but her intense dislike and resentment of the Cartwrights shows. Hoss and Joe try to gather signatures for a petition to submit to the Governor so he'll grant a reprieve, but the townsfolk are terrified by henchmen who work for a cattle baron who wields some influence in town , and who stands to gain with the Cartwrights out of the way. Meanwhile, Lassiter, who at first arouses the Cartwrights suspicions, visits Ben and Adam in jail, hoping to find the man he's looking for in Ben. Seeing that Ben is anything but that man, he goes to bat for Ben and Adam, trying to get the murdered man's daughter to admit she lied out of spite for the Cartwrights. His good deed accomplished, Lassiter continues his search for the men who done him wrong. As Hoss says, he's a driven man, and Ben is relieved not to be the object of Lassiter's intentions. This would have made a good spin-off series, called "The Avenger", about the further adventures of Lassiter and the situations he gets into as he continues his quest.



    I wanted to give this a 10, but there was one scene I found a little disturbing. The Cartwrights' friend Barney, who had benefitted from their generosity, had been collecting signatures for the petition, but when Hoss and Joe go to his house to see many he had, they find him siting in the dark with his family, terrified. The ruffians had threatened to commit unspeakable atrocities against his daughter unless he stopped, which he did, evoking an uncaring response from the two brothers. I know they were desperate to free their father and brother, but a little understanding would have been in order.moreless
Dan Blocker

Dan Blocker

Eric "Hoss" Cartwright

Lorne Greene

Lorne Greene

Ben Cartwright

Pernell Roberts

Pernell Roberts

Adam Cartwright

Michael Landon

Michael Landon

Joseph "Little Joe" Francis Cartwright

Jean Allison

Jean Allison

Sally Byrnes

Guest Star

Richard Devon

Richard Devon

Cy Hawkins

Guest Star

James Anderson (I)

James Anderson (I)

 

Guest Star

Bill Clark (I)

Bill Clark (I)

Deputy (uncredited)

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (5)

    • The scripture passage that Ben repeats over and over throughout the episode is Psalm 18:3 - "I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies."

    • Miss Byrnes kitchen window, as Lassiter points out, is caked with dirt and dust on the inside. It is so encrusted with filth there is no visibility; it seems that the sheriff would have investigated the murder scene more thoroughly and the witness's vantage point. Also, it's odd that Sally would let her kitchen window get that unsanitary, especially in a place of hospitality.

    • Vic Morrow's character's real name was not mentioned during the episode. He is called Lassiter by the people he meets because he says he comes from Lassiter, Kansas.

    • The date for the hanging is Wednesday 25th April.

    • When Lassiter visits Ben and Adam in the cell for the first time, the sheriff takes his gun off him. Shortly after Lassiter goes back and gets his gun. Just as he leaves Hoss comes in and says something. Lassiter then decides to go over to Ben again but this time the sheriff fails to take away Lassiter's gun.

  • QUOTES (6)

    • (referring to Lassiter as he rides away)
      Hoss: He's a driven man, Pa. I sure would hate to be him.
      Ben: Yea. Somebody I'd like to be even less: any one of the men he's looking for.

    • Lassiter: As a rule, you can usually tell a man by the men around him.

    • Lassiter: We met before mister, remember? In Lassiter, Kansas, at another hangin' party,remember?! (shoots Hawkins)

    • Bad Guy #1: You know, could be he's a friend of the Cartwrights.
      Bad Guy #2: Are ya, Mister?
      Lassiter: Yeah.
      Bad Guy #2: Long-standing?
      Lassiter: Ten...maybe fifteen minutes.

    • Barney: I'll light the lamp.
      Hoss: Don't bother Barney. I think I can see you better in the dark then I ever did in the daylight anyhow.

    • Sheriff Hanson: No guns in sight. Looks good.
      Ben: My boys weren't suppose to bring guns into town, they won't.

  • NOTES (1)

    • Barney Thornton's house in this episode, both outside and inside, looks eerily identical to that of Jason and Mariette Blaine's home in Badge Without Honor (Season Two) and Emily Colfax's residence in The Colonel (Season Four). It is, of course, the same structure used for all three episodes.

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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