The Wild Wild West (1969)

Season 4 Episode 7

The Night of the Fugitives

Aired Friday 7:30 PM Nov 08, 1968 on CBS
out of 10
User Rating
12 votes

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Episode Summary

The Night of the Fugitives

Jim is sent to arrest killer Norbet Plank, who escapes and flees to the town of Epitaph, owned by Epitaph Mines. Plank is the chief bookkeeper for the powerful syndicate that owns the mining company. Through Plank, the agents hope to get their hands on records that could build a case against the organization. Jim hides Plank in a church bell tower while Artie masquerades as lay-preacher Hallelujah Harry. Gordon hopes to get to the head of the syndicate, Diamond Dave Desmond, and walk off with the ledgers. But Diamond Dave's girlfriend, Rhoda, has the same idea and blackmail on her mind.


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  • West tracks a killer, who also happens to be the bookkeeper for a crime syndicate.

    An excellent episode, with lots of action, and Artie is good as a itinerant lay preacher picked up by the "boss" Diamond Desmond (Simon Oakland – who would also work with Robert on my other favourite series of his, "Black Sheep Squadron") and brought to Epitaph, Colorado.

    The famous fight scene from which Robert falls from a chandelier to a cement floor is partially shown, and has a major blooper.

    Early in the episode, West is listening in an alley at the back of a saloon as some of the bad guys talk. The saloon owner asks what will they do if he comes back. Crashing through the window of a back room, West takes out one of the bad guys, jumps up from the floor, gun in hand, and says "I'm back!" Great scene.

    West is able to capture the bookkeeper, and sneaks around town carrying him (a little far fetched with all those bad guys – including Red West as a sheriff, with a speaking part but no on-screen credit) looking for a place to hide.

    He carries him to the church, and hides up in the bell tower. Later in the episode he makes a great escape by rope, sliding down from the bell tower with the bookkeeper draped over his shoulder – shades of a scene from a later series, "A Man Called Sloane" which was featured in the opening credits.

    This third season episode, probably finished in the fourth season, is one of my favourites.moreless
Simon Oakland

Simon Oakland

Diamond Dave Desmond

Guest Star

Charles McGraw

Charles McGraw

Sheriff Baggs

Guest Star

Susan Hart

Susan Hart


Guest Star

Douglas Henderson

Douglas Henderson

Colonel Richmond

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (6)

    • Disguises: Hallelujah Harry

    • Gadgets: thermite bomb in boot heel, distraction wind-up device , drugged ring, descent line, gun with harpoon line

    • Jim twice calls the agent at the beginning "Irv," but in the credits the character's name is given as "Tod Warner."

    • In West's famous chandelier swing, he swings and hits the sheriff, knocking him against the far wall. As he falls to the floor, no one is there. When we see West regain his senses, the sheriff is laying beside him. Probably with this being filmed over two seasons, the continuity error occurred.

    • When Monk spots Jim in the mirror at the hotel, he sees a reflection of Jim running out the door. However, when the camera cuts to Jim, he jumps out from behind the door and runs out the door again.

    • When Artie uses the candle flame to reveal any invisible ink on the pages, it's clear that in the closeups a light bulb is being used, as the light doesn't flicker as a flame would.

  • QUOTES (0)

  • NOTES (3)

    • Commercial breaks: lr: Jim in Plank's room, ll: Jim in the steeple, ur: Diamond Dave, ul: the Wanderer departs

    • This famous episode includes Bob Conrad's near-fatal fall from a chandelier during a stunt. The first part of "The Fugitives" was directed by Gunnar Hellstrom, but because of a 12-week shutdown after the accident, the rest of the episode was directed by Mike Moder, who got full credit. After the calamity, due to insurance restrictions, Conrad wasn't allowed to perform any more risky stunts. Wardrobe man Jimmy George was brought in to do many of the major falls or crashing stunts from then on.

    • This episode was partially filmed at the end of the 3rd season but held over until midway through the 4th season because of the accident cited above.