Another strong entry in what's arguably the peak period of the series. The story's a variation on Romeo and Juliet, except here it's a Gypsy girl (Lloyd) and a farmer's son (Hickman). Old man Kader (Carradine) is one mean guy who views his gun-averse son as a weakling, while the Gypsy band has strict rules against outsiders. At the same time, the Gypsies are camping on Kader land, and the old man's livid. So the suspense builds since the young lovers appear eager to get away from their feuding families. Meanwhile, Matt's concern is stopping violence before it starts.
Great ironic ending that I didn't see coming. Consider the many possible endings implicit in the premise, but ace writers Crutchfield and Meston chose a very disturbing one that leaves the viewer pondering the nature of things. Thanks also to producers Mac Donnell and Arness for okaying that ending. Gunsmoke was perhaps the only series of that time that often avoided comforting climaxes, one reason these early years continue to stand up.
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