The Big Valley (1965–1969)
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The Great Safe Robbery 

Audra and Victoria Barkley arrive at a train station to catch their train. There's just one catch: there are three brothers already there trying to rob the train station's safe. They just ... See full summary »



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Episode cast overview:
Jarrod Barkley (credit only)
Nick Barkley
Heath Barkley
Victoria Barkley
Kelton Garwood ...
Elwood Barnes
Lou Johnson
Railroad Detective
Station Agent
Earle Green ...
Telegraph Operator


Audra and Victoria Barkley arrive at a train station to catch their train. There's just one catch: there are three brothers already there trying to rob the train station's safe. They just want a few hundred dollars so that they can start a new life buying their own ranch. The problem is that no one knows the combination to the safe and the brothers can't open it no matter how hard they try. The train station manager explains that due to not being able to open the safe, he had requested for a new combination. So everyone at the station is held hostage while the clueless brothers try every imaginable scheme to break open the safe.. Written by CBuzzi

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Release Date:

21 November 1966 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound Recording)


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Audra Barkley: I never thought I'd live to see the day my mother is blowing up a safe.
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User Reviews

An episode to remember
16 December 2011 | by See all my reviews

If you ever see this episode it will be something that you will never forget. A better title would have been 'Victoria Barkley meets The Three Stooges'.

In this episode the writers want to do something like a comedy that involved the incredible Barbara Stanwyck. They succeed in making a story that will go down in history as the one of the most famous episodes of 'The Big Valley' series.

The story starts out as Victoria and Audra are waiting on a rural train in a primitive part of the west. When three very inept brothers decide to rob the train station. They are after the safe that they think contain a few hundred dollars.

Now these three brothers may have been bandits but they were raised proper. All they really wanted to do was get a few dollars and start a ranch. Hurting people was not on their agenda.

So when they try to rob the station they are met with a foe that they were not prepared for- Victoria Barkley.

She watches the three men try to open a safe by means of a hammer, a high fall and even dynamite. All the while Victoria is telling them they they are doing it wrong. But the oldest brother, and leader, named Duke- does not want to hear women talk. He is going to do it his way no matter what another person has to say.

Duke did not feel like he was doing anything wrong until he has to get physical with Victoria. Stealing the railroads money was nothing to him. Not until he hits Ms Barkley that Duke realizes that he is a criminal.

The story does take a sweet side when the youngest brother, Shorty, wants more than to be a bandit. And through Audra, he finds out that he is someone other than a brother of Duke.

Even though Victoria and Audra knew the names of the persons that stole the safe and kidnapped them- they will keep silent. Not because of threats but because they know they have helped a family turn their life around.

I really like this episode. Barbara Stanwyck, with even some comedy of her own, was a delight to watch. But fret not BV fans- they do throw in a little headstrong Nick (Peter Breck) to make you feel good about it being a western.

Sit back and enjoy this episode for what it is- a good show.

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