Gunsmoke: Season 14, Episode 21

The Long Night (17 Feb. 1969)

TV Episode  |  TV-PG  |   |  Western
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 24 users  
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After surviving (barely) a bounty hunter's attempt to assassinate him, an outlaw tries to turn himself in to Matt Dillon. But Matt's out of town, and the bounty hunters' companions get to ... See full summary »



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Title: The Long Night (17 Feb 1969)

The Long Night (17 Feb 1969) on IMDb 7.8/10

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Lou Antonio ...
Susan Silo ...
Robert Totten ...
Robert Brubaker ...
James Nusser ...
Rex Holman ...
Glenn Strange ...
Ted Jordan ...


After surviving (barely) a bounty hunter's attempt to assassinate him, an outlaw tries to turn himself in to Matt Dillon. But Matt's out of town, and the bounty hunters' companions get to the outlaw first. They aren't so much interested in the outlaw as they are in killing Matt, so they take over the Long Branch and hold everyone hostage. They also get word out to a land baron whose wife the outlaw accidentally killed: come here and pick up the prisoner in return for your gunmen to waste the marshal. The land baron accepts the deal, but the outlaw's girlfriend shoots him as he's about to take the outlaw away. While Doc performs an emergency operation, the land baron's hirelings are torn between their promise to punish the outlaw and their revulsion at the bounty hunters' sadistic leader, who forces town drunk Louie Pheeters to crawl on his hands and knees the length of the saloon to get a drink (which he then refuses in a dramatic sequence). This episode's production number indicates ... Written by Peter Harris

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Release Date:

17 February 1969 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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James Nusser that plays Louie- puts on an excellent performance
5 October 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

In one of the better 'Gunsmoke' episodes this cliff hanger involves a man accused of murder in another county that is being chased by bounty hunters. Since the claim of murder is actually from a county that is controlled by a wealthy landowner, there really is no warrant just bounty hunters trying to bring him back to the county for their kind of justice.

The man, Ben Miller, does have a warrant for robbery and wants to turn himself into Matt. His wife, Rita, goes to get Marshal Dillon as the bounty hunters close in on Ben. Just in time, Marshal Dillon arrives to take control of the prisoner- much to the dislike of the three bounty hunters. And the leader of the bounty hunters, Guerin (Bruce Dern), wants revenge on Marshal Dillon.

While Ben Miller is in jail and Matt away on business, the bounty hunters come into Dodge and take Sam, Ms Kitty, Doc and Louie hostage as they wait for the wealthy land owner to arrive and take control of the so-called murderer. They are also set to receive a large amount of money from the landowner. But when the landowner arrives things do not go as planned. And in the end some people are arrested and some die.

This was an episode played brilliantly by the entire cast. Bruce Dern played his part to perfection as the evil bounty hunter. And even James Nusser that plays the town drunk Louie Pheeters puts on a great performance in this interesting episode. Good watch!

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