Lawman (1958–1962)
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The Tarnished Badge 

Jess Bridges is an ex-lawman who goes bad. When he tries to rob the stage in Laramie disguised as a marshal, Troop has to stop him. But Dan has a small problem - he looked up to Jess and he used to be his deputy.

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
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Jess Bridges (as Lon Chaney)
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Slick (as Jack Searl)
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Jake
Rex Devereaux ...
Posse Member
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Storyline

Ex-marshal Jess Bridges rides into Laramie with two men who appear to be his prisoners to rob the stage. Troop is prepared for the robbery attempt and has the town filled with armed men and wagons to blockade the streets. A shootout ensues but ends when the men escape by riding through a saloon but Jess is severely wounded. Troop used to be a deputy under Jess and wants to take him alive. The posse splits up with Johnny on the trail of Jess. Johnny is caught by Jess but when Jess faints due to the wound, Johnny removes the bullet saving Jess. However, Jess knocks Johnny out with a rock and takes him prisoner to help Jess make it to the cabin where the men are to meet. At the cabin Jess pretends Johnny is a friend. He is forced to shoot the other two men who learn Johnny is a lawman but Jess is fatally shot by them. Written by Anonymous

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Western

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Release Date:

28 January 1962 (USA)  »

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(RCA Sound Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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During the shootout in town, a rifle is fired from behind a wagon and smoke is seen from the barrel, but no sound is heard. See more »

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User Reviews

 
The great Lon Chaney makes his only appearance
4 January 2011 | by (Youngstown,Ohio) – See all my reviews

A final season episode, "The Tarnished Badge" features long-time Western heavy Lon Chaney playing Jess Bridges, a former lawman whose deputy was Dan Troop (John Russell), now dedicated to a life of crime because he never made enough money upholding the law. Failing to rob a Laramie stagecoach with two cohorts, with Bridges wounded as a result, the trio are followed by Troop's posse, but it's his deputy, Johnny McKay (Peter Brown), who finds the bleeding Bridges, alone, armed and deadly. Only when the exhausted Bridges collapses is the young deputy able to remove the bullet from his injured shoulder, yet he still gets waylaid by Bridges, who can't understand why Johnny didn't let him die and then take him in. Keeping the deputy at bay and handcuffed, Bridges decides to head back to his hideout, where his two companions await his return. Essentially a two man show between Peter Brown and Lon Chaney, it provides the aging veteran one of the last opportunities to play a heavy on a TV Western, earning a touch of sympathy despite his misdeeds. The role is an echo of his elderly, arthritic lawman in the 1952 classic "High Noon," who refuses to help Gary Cooper's marshal because he doesn't want to be a burden, now turning against his former profession in financial desperation. John Carradine would also get his turn in a later episode, "The Actor."


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