A teen-aged boy who robbed and killed to impress a saloon gal is pursued by Matt. The boy waylays Matt and leaves him for dead, then goes home to his grandmother's house to find her nursing Matt back to health.
On his way to Larned, Matt, feverish, spends the night at an abandoned shack. When he wakes up after losing a day, a recently released convict who swore to kill Matt, is himself found against a wall, dead, unarmed, shot twice, and the murder weapon appears to belong to the marshal.
A mild old peddler of patent medicines and card tricks arrives in Dodge with his grown daughter, hoping to settle down, but instead they find their worst luck yet, beginning with a card game with a rich man and his spoiled son.
A retired lawman and showman wants only to settle down with the Dodge seamstress he left behind twenty years ago, but a young whippersnapper hopes to make a name for himself by challenging the aging gun to a duel.
Festus returns to Dodge from wolfing and is hired by the Cattleman's Association to hunt down the wolves killing everyone's cattle. What he finds is that what's been doing the preying may wind him up in prison if he doesn't get Matt's help.
A man carrying a tempting sum of money is attacked from behind by someone who beats him and leaves him for dead. Lucky for the injured man, an old friend of Matt is there to take him in to Doc Adams for mending.
Bucko, a close friend of Festus, is accused of murdering a man to whom he lost at poker. When his alibi witness lies out of fear, Bucko is sentenced to hang, and Festus, who'd begun to see the marshal as a friend, vows Bucko won't swing.
The Ginnis family, not from any town, live on the prairie and are used to getting their own way. When one son gets hurt, they ride to town to get help. That was just their first brush with the folks of Dodge but proves not to be their last.
A family in search of a doctor find Matt and his prisoner unconscious and handcuffed to each other on the prairie. The prisoner wakens first and announces that Matt is the condemned man he is transporting for hanging.
Festus finds a little girl out on the prairie. He learns she saw her ma get killed by a stranger. When he takes her to Dodge, Matt hears she was hiding when this happened but can identify this man who may already be in town.
After some horsing around, Festus breaks some of Quint's equipment. To repair or get anew, they travel to Wichita and meet a saloon girl who tells them she needs to get away from town but her jealous boyfriend is now hot on their trail.
A saloon girl spurns a man's advances in Wichita and moves to Dodge, where she becomes a respectable married woman, only to be confronted with her past when she discovers that her rancher husband is the nephew of the man she refused.
Festus, returning to Dodge after doing some trapping, sees his girl, April, and they argue over a gift she received. Running off, she hides but her perch gives her a bird's eye view of a murder, one no one believes she witnessed but the killers.
Childless and poor, farmer Caleb feels like a failure, and his wife assures him he is one. Caleb moves into town to seek some meaning in his life, and soon finds himself--a man who doesn't wear a gun--challenged to a duel.
Henry Huckaby, a local farmer and fed up with a sore back and an empty belly leaves to seek his fortune in Dodge. After several failed ideas he hits on one that may make him rich but could also cost him his life.
Given three months to live by a quack peddler of patent medicines, a mousy bank clerk quits his job, withdraws all his money, makes ready to go to California, and falls for a girl who may endanger what time he has remaining.
Rob Scott considers himself a man who could stay or go when it came to women. He may have met his match though when a woman he desires and her husband take over an abandoned homestead and they come to where he works to look over some stock.
A traveling salesman meets up with Bull Foot, an Indian who mainly sells vegetables. When goods are traded for a squaw, he is upset when she runs away and into the arms of Festus, whose mule she steals, only to return home awaiting sale to the next customer.
Orval returns from seven years in prison for killing his wife's lover, vowing to reclaim his house and business. Edna tries to goad her new husband and Orval's son into a plot to kill Orval; then her head is turned by a traveling salesman.
Jess, Jay's twin, is shot and killed by an unknown assailant while working late at the family business. When a stranger to Dodge is suspected, Matt does his best to track him down and bring him to justice.
Two brothers traveling to California are joined by a third man who soon proves to be a wrong 'un, manhandling and killing a young woman they encounter on the prairie and turning on Quint when he shows up to share his rabbits with them.