Gunsmoke: Season 7, Episode 31

Cale (5 May 1962)

TV Episode  |  TV-PG  |   |  Western
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 37 users  
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Cale is a bullheaded young drifter who takes a nap in a barn he comes across only to wake up to shootout between a horse thief and the owner. Cale is shot, wounded, and becomes a suspected accomplice.



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Episode cast overview:
Carl Reindel ...
Peter Ashley ...
Will Archer
Joseph Hamilton ...
Nick Archer
Robert Karnes ...


Cale falls asleep in a stranger's barn and wakes up to a gunfight. The owner, shot, falls into the barn and thinking Cale is another rustler, shoots him. Cale takes off after the real rustler and is shot again. Dillon rides upon him, takes him to Doc and when he recovers, decides to resolve this in his own way. Written by DrDOS

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Release Date:

5 May 1962 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

Yet another first-rate episode--SUPERB!
17 May 2014 | by (Whiting, Indiana) – See all my reviews

I can hardly believe that the IMDb user comments from 2012 are in reaction to the same episode that I just watched. I would encourage anyone interested in "Gunsmoke" to pull up chair, turn off the phone, and experience a first-rate drama that defies the challenges of grinding out a weekly hour-long TV series on a limited budget.

The actor Carl Reindel perfectly portrays the young, headstrong, arrogant, free-spirited title character with great energy and conviction. Cale manages to offend yet endear himself to everyone he meets-- a tall order for any actor and director-- yet Mr. Reindel's assured performance brings Cale to life in a totally believable way.

Get the DVD set and watch for yourself.

The real "quality assurance" of this episode is the combo of writer Kathleen Hite and director Harry Harris, Jr., who were responsible for the superb "Apprentice Doc" from earlier in season 7. They do not disappoint here. The interaction between Cale and the Dodge City regulars is fascinating to watch; I was literally hanging on every word of the script, as Hite and Harris carefully, expertly weave a practically-flawless tale of a young man who lives his life and solves his problem his own way, and everyone else--Matt Dillon included--- might just as well stay out of his way!

Again, first-rate performances all around, and a script and director who brilliantly draw the viewer into the story. The final encounter in the barn between Cale and old Nick Archer (finally a chance for actor Joseph Hamilton to show his acting chops without being blown away in the opening reel) brings the episode to a close in a truly sincere, touching scene...leaving only a final, philosophical observation from Matt and Chester.

Add to it all another full-blown original orchestral score (featuring winds and brass, guitar and harmonica) by the great Fred Steiner, and you have another high point in Gunsmoke's Season No. 7.

I'll be watching this one again--- and you should see it, too.


2 of 3 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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