Gunsmoke: Season 20, Episode 8

The Fourth Victim (4 Nov. 1974)

TV Episode  -   -  Western
8.3
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 26 users  
Reviews: 2 user | 1 critic

Dillon has to find and stop a serial sniper in Dodge who has been killing one man per night with a silencer equipped .30 caliber rifle.

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Title: The Fourth Victim (04 Nov 1974)

The Fourth Victim (04 Nov 1974) on IMDb 8.3/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
Doc
...
...
...
Biff McGuire ...
Potter
...
Ray Price
Ted Jordan ...
Paul Sorensen ...
Bill Saxbe
Howard Culver ...
Howie
Woody Chambliss ...
Victor Kilian ...
Homer Jones (as Victor Killian)
Lloyd Perryman ...
Henry Meeker
Frank Janson ...
Jeb Nelson (as Frank K. Janson)
Al Wyatt Sr. ...
Earl Haines (as Al Wyatt)
Ben Bates ...
Second Matt
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Storyline

Late one night, a man (seen only from the shoulders down or in silhouette) enters the Dodge House Hotel, swipes a room key, lets himself into the room and goes back to return the key. A few minutes later, the room's occupant comes in. As he shuts the door, he looks up and sees the silhouette -- pointing a rifle at him. The slug drills him through the heart, but there is no sound of the shot and he's not discovered until the next morning. Newly thinks that someone could fashion a device to silence muzzle blasts. Matt sends word throughout Dodge and the nearby communities to form a street police force. But the killer strikes again the next night, and the next. Matt's now convinced that the serial killer is choosing his victims for a specific purpose -- most likely because they served on a jury. Matt questions Doc, who's lived in Dodge the longest, about the juries he remembers serving on and whether he remembered the men who served with them and who they judged. From Doc's information, ... Written by Peter Harris

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Western

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4 November 1974 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The true "fourth victim" (after the sniper's attempt on Doc is foiled) is storekeeper Homer Jones, played by 'Victor Killian', who's on camera only long enough to die (the sniper, who was wounded in the left arm, walks into Jones' store and holds the rifle like a pistol to shoot him point-blank). There is a cruel irony to this, because Killian was murdered in real life four and a half years later. See more »

Goofs

When the killer leaves the room for the last time to try to set up an assassination of Matt Dillon himself, he seems to be walking AWAY from the only door (toward and then past the camera). See more »

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User Reviews

 
This is an darn good show for so late in the series.
16 October 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

In one of the most suspenseful episodes we have seen in a very long time, Matt has a killer loose in Dodge picking off people like a fast moving stomach virus. And if Matt cannot make the connection of why certain people are the victims then the entire town may be in jeopardy.

It begins after two townsfolk are shot and the only evidence is they were shot with a high power rifle. But the strange thing is that no one heard any shots. Even when Festus is just a short distance from one of the victims, he was unable to heard any noise that suggested a shot had been fired.

After some investigation plus the shooting death of another person, the only connection was that the people served on a jury that convicted a man named Connors to prison many years ago. The only person still alive on the jury is none other than Doc Adams.

After an attempt on Doc's life, Matt is sure that the connection is Connors but when he gets a telegram advising that Connors is dead that theory hits a dead end. There must be some other connection to the shootings and Matt needs to find out before more people die.

With this being the last season of the series you would think the shows were lacking since the series was not picked up for a 21st season. But this episode was entertaining, suspenseful and down right interesting from start to finish. had all the great aspects that made the series such a great watch for so long.


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