Two railroad companies are trapped in a deadlock in the town of Big Spur, Colorado. The Texas Colorado & Overland Railroad and The Continental Divide Railroad are arguing over the right-of-way over Raymond Gorge. The Continental Divide has the gorge but the Texas Colorado has the depot. Both sides want the other to back down. Gunmen for both sides have ruined the once-nice-town and intimidated townspeople. Paladin must find a way to settle this dispute regardless of which side wins. Written by
The title is based on the common expression: Birds of a feather flock together. This expression has been around since at least the 16th century as: "Birds of one kind and color flock and fly always together." See more »
The first re-telling of Dashiell Hammett's "Red Harvest"?
I just saw this episode, and immediately recognized the basic plot elements--talented stranger arrives in town divided between warring gangs, and ends the conflict by playing one side against the other.
Three years later, Akira Kurosawa released "Yojimbo", which retold Hammett's story in feudal Japan, and was much truer to the bloody nature of the original novel than HGWT could ever be. A few years after that, Sergio Leone took the story back to the American West in "A Fistful of Dollars", and they've never stopped remaking it since--last time was with Bruce Willis.
But this is the first time I know of that somebody took Hammett's basic idea and shifted eras and settings. They even tip the hat to Hammett's 'Continental Op' by referring to a Continental Divide Railway.
I wouldn't call this one of the best HGWT eps I've seen, but it's a fascinating bit of pop cultural history, nonetheless--they even beat Kurosawa to the punch. No mean feat. But I doubt he ever saw this episode. He was influenced by the same original source--the genius of Dashiell Hammett.
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