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"Laramie" Handful of Fire (1961)

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Good Episode of a Great Series

8/10
Author: spiritof67 from United States
11 September 2017

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This review contains spoilers. Unfortunately, they are necessary.

SPOILER ALERT

I am only reviewing this episode because I read another review "defending" the character, if that term can be used, of the George MacReady/Barrington role. A role portraying the leader of the Wounded Knee Massacre cannot be "defended". The episode properly shows a psychotic martinet who murdered women and children even after direct orders NOT to attack were delivered by the character played by John Smith. Smith's portrayal was in no way "over the top", but was bravely trying to first prevent a massacre and then to bring the catalyst for that massacre to justice.

SPOILER ALERT

It is also shown that the MacReady/Barrington character was doing his best to start and continue a war between Chato's tribe and the Cavalry that was without factual cause simply to kill Indians. In the episode, even his own daughter thought he was in the wrong, as did the politicians quoted in the story.

SPOILER ALERT ENDS HERE

This episode of Laramie, and others, were truly trying to redress the "only good Indian is a dead Indian" dicta that Hollywood followed for so sadly long a period, and it did that well. Any other analysis is not based on either the history or facts on which the episode was based.

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Handful Of Macready's Fire

8/10
Author: ellenirishellen-62962 from rockingham
22 March 2017

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Would give a higher rating,but John Smith as Slim was over-the-top in his raking Col Barrington for attacking Indians in his plan to civilize the West.The Col was single-minded,believing what he was doing as right.Barrington was not depicted as doing this repeatedly,carrying out massacres against civilians,but tried to exact revenge for the slaughter of the troops he was a part of 25 years previous,only barely escaping with his life after being lured by women and children to the same cave where he and his followers hide out from pursuing troops since his escape from a military court.Think Macready delivered an honorable portrayal of a hated officer,and am tired of seeing him bashed as cold or incapable of emotion.Also,think the effort could've been made to get a stunt rider with a white wig to match Macready's instead of the chap with dark hair.

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