Rancher Arnold sends for Hoppy and Red to help fight the cattle rustler Nevada and his gang. Hoppy poses as a gambler to get on Nevada's ranch and meet the snuff taking boss who pictures himself another Napoleon. Hoppy's smoke signal alerts Arnold's men leading to a massive gunfight. Written by
Maurice VanAuken <firstname.lastname@example.org>
So often cast as a dour villain or stern-faced sheriff in his sound era westerns, J.P.McGowan here brings genial and knowing good humor to the role of foreman Buck Peters. He shows an easy authority among the ranch hands, then goes into ironic self-effacement when the dragon sister arrives. In his mid-fifties and getting heavy in build, with more than one hundred and eighty roles behind him (and that counts all his appearances in The Hazards of Helen as just one!), JP takes readily to the humorous business at the ranch which counters the serious purpose of Hoppy's mission as the film develops. Not a big role, but one that the Mulford fans would have insisted on being done to rights. As a much experienced producer of inexpensive but popular light dramas himself, JP may have enjoyed working for the veteran producer Harry Sherman. He would have enjoyed, too, the adroit and vigorous direction of the sole sequence in which he appears, set in front of the bunkhouse. All in all, the audience sees a different and happy side of J.P.McGowan, Hollywood's first Australian.
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