Lawman (1958)

Season 1 Episode 1

The Deputy

Aired Sunday 8:30 PM Oct 05, 1958 on ABC
out of 10
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Episode Summary

The Deputy

In this pilot episode, Dan Troop takes over in Laramie after the previous marshal is killed. His first job is to bring in the marshal's killer, and in the process he gains a fine deputy in Johnny McKay.

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  • Dan Troop arrives in Laramie to take the marshall's job after David Lemp is murdered. He meets Johnny McKay, who wants the deputy job, but Dan dismisses him because he is too young. Johnny reveals that one of the Hawks brothers killed Lemp.moreless

    Dan and Johnny get to meet for the very first time. Johnny is finishing up the grave for David Lemp, the previous marshal. Johnny mistakenly thinks Dan is a crook. He later learns differently when Dan comes into Dru Lemp's cafe. Dru was David's wife, and Johnny works for her. Dan also encounters the Hawks Brothers. They came up with quite an all-star trio for the brothers, Edward Byrnes, Lee Van Cleef, and Jack Elam. After seeing Byrnes play such a punk in this episode, it is hard to believe he ever played a good guy. Elam and Van Cleef just look like bad guys. Oh, there was also when Dan first gets in the office and sees the cat. The townsmen try to show it away, but Dan says to let him stay. I loved his line about, "They'll even catch your mice for you, if you don't rub them the wrong way." That sounds just like my cat. Johnny tries to apply for the deputy job, but Dan dismisses him because he thinks he's too young. Dan later arrests Lacey Hawks (Byrnes). That leaves the other two. Johnny tries to convince Dan that he can't take them alone, and to let him help. Dan refuses. In the ensuing gunfight, Dan shoots one brother, and then turns to see the other brother fall. When he turns to see who shot him, he finds Johnny standing there with a rifle. That was a very cool moment. Then came the even cooler moment. Dan takes the "Deputy Wanted" sign down, let's out his first smile of the episode, and motion for Johnny to come inside with him. A great way to kick off the series.moreless
  • Here comes Dan Troop riding into Laramie! Get ready for 4 years of top notch action with great co-stars. In the opener we get a whiff of Dan's demeanor and a hint of his past.moreless

    As I watch this show I get very nostalgic. Dan Troops withdrawn personality is in stark contrast to many other western heroes...many of whom the creators wanted us to "like" them [ Marshal Dillon, Brett Maverick, Tom Brewster, Cheyenne etc]....willing to put his life on the line in a town in which he has NO stake seems hard to believe to most, but for Troop it is "what he does".....the guest stars that Warner Brothers would provide through the series run would add to the overall quality of this favorite scene in this opener is when Troop is sitting in his office [which is dusty and needs cleaning], and a stray cat wanders across his desk. Soon to be deputy [played to perfection by Peter Brown] starts to reach out to shooo the cat away when Troop says "leave him alone, he isn't bothering anybody".....which we would learn as the series progresses is Troops view of and let live, unless you do something wrong!......moreless
Edd Byrnes

Edd Byrnes

Lacy Hawks

Guest Star

Lee Van Cleef

Lee Van Cleef

Walt Hawks

Guest Star

Rankin Mansfield

Rankin Mansfield

Carl Shoemaker

Guest Star

Bek Nelson

Bek Nelson

Dru Lemp

Recurring Role

Lane Chandler

Lane Chandler

Tom Pike

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Dan: I wondered what happened to Sam.
      Johnny: You know him?
      Dan: Sam Blake. Real well.
      Johnny: Well, he got hung for horse stealing.
      Dan: That's one sure way to break the habit.

    • Shoemaker: Well, I--I imagine the people in Abilene were disappointed when you told them you were leaving.
      Dan: They managed to hide it.
      Shoemaker: Oh?
      Dan: You'd be surprised how unnecessary I started looking once trouble dies down.
      Shoemaker: Well, you won't find this town ungrateful.
      Dan: I like my gratitude once a month, payable to the nearest bank.

    • Dan: A town marshal's been killed. Unless I do something about it, it's liable to develop into a bad habit.

    • Shoemaker: You like cats?
      Dan: Why not? They're independent. They don't ask any favors. They'll even catch your mice for you - if you don't rub them the wrong way.

    • Walt Hawks: Don't you know who I am?
      Dan: Yep. I never walked into a town yet where I didn't have to to lick someone who thought he was real tough. You're him.

    • Lacy Hawks: A man oughta die with his best shirt on. It saves the undertaker from putting it on afterwards.

  • NOTES (4)

    • Stanley Farrar is listed in the end credits but doesn't appear.

    • In this episode, John Russell's hair is all dark brown. He would later have the silver streaks added to his hair, because he believed someone with Dan's experience should be in his mid-40's. Russell was only 37 when he took the role.

    • According to Peter Brown on his website, his relationship with John Russell was very similar to the relationship that Johnny McKay had with Dan Troop. On screen, Dan was teaching Johnny how to be a lawman. Off-screen, John was teaching Peter how to be an actor.

    • There is a yellow tomcat who serves at the "office cat," who is in quite a few of the episodes in the first season. It is never named, but Dan makes it plain in this first show that he "likes cats." From time to time he shows up in an episode, and then, after the first season, seems to disappear without comment.