Cimarron Strip: Season 1, Episode 18

Knife in the Darkness (25 Jan. 1968)

TV Episode  -   -  Western
7.4
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 27 users  
Reviews: 1 user | 1 critic

Marshal Crown, during the course of an hauntingly foggy night, hunts for a killer who is butchering his victims. Francis tells crown about how police in London were unable to solve a ... See full summary »

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Title: Knife in the Darkness (25 Jan 1968)

Knife in the Darkness (25 Jan 1968) on IMDb 7.4/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Randy Boone ...
Jill Townsend ...
Jennifer Billingsley ...
Josie
...
Tal St. James
...
Kallman
...
Pony Jane
Patrick Horgan ...
Tipton
...
Bladgey
Victoria Shaw ...
Maddie Lennart
...
Enoch Shelton
Ron Soble ...
Shadow Feller
...
Don Hanmer ...
Peddigrew
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Storyline

Marshal Crown, during the course of an hauntingly foggy night, hunts for a killer who is butchering his victims. Francis tells crown about how police in London were unable to solve a similar set of killings earlier that year -- by someone who called himself Jack the Ripper. Written by Bill Koenig

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jack the ripper | See All (1) »

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Western

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Release Date:

25 January 1968 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Quotes

[last lines]
Dulcey Coopersmith: Oh, don't worry about it, Francis. Asa Tayback's crowd will be in tonight and the Marshal will give you a real rootin' tootin' story if you like.
Marshal Jim Crown: I told you I'm leaving town and I'm going to sleep for two days!
Francis Wilde: What about my story?
Marshal Jim Crown: You'll have a story alright - about a daredevil, hell-bent-for-leather lawman who took on eighty drink-crazed cowboys and tamed 'em.
Francis Wilde: What lawman?
Marshal Jim Crown: Francis Wilde, the Scourge of Cimarron!
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User Reviews

 
Jack the Ripper Goes West!
4 November 2006 | by (nashville, tn) – See all my reviews

Two things make this episode a standout: a fine script by Harlan Ellison, and a great original Bernard Herrmann score that's perfectly suited to the grim and gruesome subject matter.

It's been a month-and-a-half since Saucy Jack's last escapade in London, and one foggy night in Cimarron, the body of a girl from the local bordello "Pony Jane's" is found, bearing all the gory earmarks of an encounter with the Ripper. When shortly afterward an old flame becomes the next victim, Marshall Jim Crown (Stuart Whitman) comes to the reluctant realization that he must try to do what all the resources of Scotland Yard couldn't: bring history's most mysterious and infamous serial killer to justice.

There's some hokey dialogue, and the low budget occasionally works against the story's premise (i.e. that with so many rootless people passing through this frontier town, it's not so easy to pick out one suspicious stranger). Still and all, the entire story (except for the epilogue) takes place at night, and the director makes fairly effective use of the spooky atmosphere.

For Ripper afficianados, Ellison put some nice touches in his script, including a taunting letter from Jack to the Marshall which reads quite authentically when compared to the real thing. There's an original twist involving the true identity of the Ripper, and the fate he meets at the end of the episode is highly appropriate.

Plus, the original Bernard Herrmann score is a treat, very effective and well-matched to the somber mood of this (mostly) convincing little nightmare.


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