Gunsmoke: Season 17, Episode 23

Alias Festus Haggin (6 Mar. 1972)

TV Episode  -   -  Western
8.1
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 34 users  
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A case of mistaken identity is no laughing matter for Festus when a U.S. marshal arrests the good-natured deputy as bloodthirsty murderer Frank Eaton. While Festus stands trial, Matt investigates to clear his friend's name.

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Title: Alias Festus Haggin (06 Mar 1972)

Alias Festus Haggin (06 Mar 1972) on IMDb 8.1/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Doc
...
...
Festus Haggin / Frank Eaton
...
Ramon Bieri ...
Doyle
...
Susie
Robert Totten ...
Walker
Booth Colman ...
Rand (as Booth Coman)
Gregg Palmer ...
Guthrie
William Bryant ...
Bennett
Rayford Barnes ...
Grebbs
Herb Vigran ...
Judge Brooker
Jon Lormer ...
Judge Clayborne
Glenn Strange ...
Sam
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Storyline

A case of mistaken identity is no laughing matter for Festus when a U.S. marshal arrests the good-natured deputy as bloodthirsty murderer Frank Eaton. While Festus stands trial, Matt investigates to clear his friend's name.

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Western

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Release Date:

6 March 1972 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Good suspense
14 December 2006 | by (Valencia, Spain) – See all my reviews

The early years of Gunsmoke featured the grittiest and toughest stories. When Burt Reynolds was in the show as Quint, most of the episodes were action-packed. During the first couple of years after Festus became a cast member, he was shown as a tough old hillbilly. After Newly joined the cast, Festus' role changed, and he was often used for comedy relief.

So seeing an episode from 1972 where Festus was featured in a serious role was delightful. In this episode, Festus is wrongly accused of three murders who are committed by another guy who looks like him. The tension builds throughout the episode, as every effort to exonerate Festus just seems to backfire. Festus also plays the dual role of the real killer, Jack Eaton. Unlike Festus, Eaton speaks English very well, and he is clean-cut and looks like Lee Van Cleef! Festus did a great job acting as the bad guy, and he also directed this episode.

Overall, this episode goes to show how good Gunsmoke could be when the actors were not forced to play stereotyped roles. Too bad it did not happen more often, and too bad that Festus was usually around only for comic relief.


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