9/04/14 2:38a Gunsmoke The Disciple S-19/Ep-24/4/1/74 After a shootout with Bank Robbers in Dodge City, Marshall Matt Dillon is severely injured, his right shoulder/arm/hand have made it impossible for him to use his gun. He decides to leave Dodge City after he sends for a new Marshall to replace him. Matt Dillon knows the bank robbers will come after him after he had killed one of the robbers. Wandering around Kansas wilderness he runs in to young Army deserter, Lem Rawlings . This young man refuses to kill any man, he quotes the Bible and praises his abilities endlessly and he is very proficient with the a Gun. Contradictions abound. He tends to Matt's wounded arm and continues dominate the former Marshall, telling him that he knows best and that is the end of it. He takes care of Matt, feeds him, stops his arm from bleeding. Matt never felt so vulnerable. Lem Rawlings says he won't kill those robbers but he shows his fast shooting arm. Matt Dillon has never met someone so young with a such a huge ego and a strong weapon that he carries but won't use it . Wearing a gun invites trouble, so either you use or get rid of it. Lem acts like a Disciple preaching one minute and preparing to sacrifice himself the next.
After Matt is shot in the right arm (his good shooting arm), Matt is convinced that it's not good to be Marshal anymore, so he quits his job and leaves town for a more peaceful life. Along the way, he runs across a young fugitive who shoots well but refuses to kill. Also outlaws that have been after Matt for a long time go on the trail looking for him now that he's injured.
The Disciple has to be one of the strongest episodes of Gunsmoke that I've seen in my life! It does what a great TV episode should do, give the characters strong development, put them in extreme peril, and be really awesome about it. I really loved the relationship between Matt and the young man; the drama is excellent and it's emotionally powerful.
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