Season 2 Episode 18

The Rivals

Aired Sunday 6:30 PM Jan 25, 1959 on ABC

Episode Fan Reviews (1)

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  • Three Mavericks

    As any fan of the classic Western series Maverick can tell you there were three Mavericks: you had James Garner as Bret Maverick, Jack Kelly as Bart Maverick, and Roger Moore as Cousin Beau. Only in one episode did all three appear together. Now, I know some of you are saying hold on here, how can this be? Didn't Roger Moore replace James Garner in the series? The answer to the above question is yes. Roger Moore did replace James Garner on Maverick in Season Four. But he did make an earlier appearance on the show playing a different character. The Rivals is that episode. In the opening scene we see all three "Mavericks" traveling together on a train. The only time that ever happened even though Moore was playing a character named Jack Vandergelt not Maverick.

    The episode itself is an outstanding one with Moore doing better work here than he ever did during his stint as a regular. Or maybe it's just that the script here is better than any of the scripts that were given to him during his one season tenure on the series. Either way, Moore does a nice job and has excellent chemistry with star Garner and fellow guest star Patricia Crowley.

    The plot concerns Bret Maverick switching identities with rich kid Jack Vandergelt so that Jack can win the heart of a pretty damsel (Crowley) who doesn't care for wealthy men. Needless to say, all hell breaks loose when the switch is discovered but as happened on most episodes of Maverick things end happily. Moore wins the heart of Crowley and Bret moves on after being well-paid for his efforts. Also look for future Commissioner Gordon Neil Hamilton in a nice turn as Moore's tyrannical father.

    Before I conclude, there's one final moment that makes this episode great. That's the ending cameo in the final scene by Jack Kelly. Kelly might have been thought by many as the lesser of the two Maverick brothers but he shows at the end that he may well have been the smartest of the two.