Season 19 Episode 3

Matt's Love Story

Aired Unknown Sep 24, 1973 on CBS

Episode Recap

Marshall Dillon is tracking an man for killing a gambler in Dodge and follows him all the way to Arizona. Though the man admires Matt's "salt" he shoots Matt grazing his skull. Matt tries to reach his gun that he lost when he fell from his horse but the man kicks it away then kicks Matt in the head and leaves him to die. Matt's horse wanders onto a widow's ranch and she and her dog go out and find Matt. She brings him home and despite reservations, nurses him back to health.

When Matt finally comes around, he can't remember who he is, who shot him or where he came from. Mike (the widow) decides to call him Dan. During his recovery Matt and Mike begin to fall in love.

"Favorite, the man who shot Matt is hired by a ruthless rancher who wants Mike's land, to kill her. When he arrives at the ranch he's shocked to see Matt there and to realize that Matt doesn't know who he is.

Matt almost gets his memory back when Mike mentions Dodge but not yet. Matt/Dan finally healthy enough to travel prepares to leave when Mike gives him the choice to go or stay. They kiss (Matt's first onscreen kiss, not to Kitty but to "Mike").

Favorite decides not to kill Mike and tells her so and also tells her who Matt really is and that it was he who shot him.

Favorite leaves to return the money he was paid.

Mike tells Matt why Favorite left and when Matt/Dan decides to go after him, Mike tells him who he really is.

With his memory restored Matt sets out to get Favorite. He catches up with him at the ranch and helps Favorite kill the men who wanted Mike dead. Matt tells Favorite that he has to take him back to Dodge. Favorite tells Matt he won't go but he has been shot in the gunfight with the rancher and his men and he dies.

Mike shows up to make sure Matt is not hurt and tells him it's hard to find two good men in a lifetime and lose them both and then rides off.