|Index||2 reviews in total|
A very intriguing and unusual character study involving a rodeo clown
with a missing arm who ends up being constantly humiliated and harassed
by a couple of sadistic cowboys (Johnson and Pickens) and, much to the
consternation of Buzz who tries to defend him, seems to allow and even
encourage it. This is one episode were all the characters in the cast
are fascinating and multi-dimensional and the wrap-up is particularly
It is also interesting to see the part of the passive clown played by Salmi who in real life, many years later, went into a violent rage and killed both his wife and then himself. It is equally interesting to see the part of the bullying cowboy played by Johnson who usually always plays the nice, stoic type, but here is quite convincing as the bad guy.
There is the added element of actual rodeo footage, which is a bit tense since the rodeo clown is put into direct danger of a raging bronco. This is by far a superior episode of the series.
"A Long Piece of Mischief". Buzz and Todd find themselves working at a
rodeo in Mesquite Texas. They happen to see a cruel practical joke
perpetrated on the deformed rodeo clown, Albert Salmi, and Buzz does
all in his power to stop it. The clown still smiles after the cruel
joke and immediately forgives his transgressors. Buzz is disgusted by
the clown's reaction and respects no part of the clown's forgiving and
easy going ways. The jokes get crueler and the clown is going to leave
the rodeo and no longer forgive his tormentors, but realizes he needs
to stay true to his basic essence and remains appealing to his better
nature and forgives and turns the other "cheek" (using Buzz's word.
Buzz realizes that the clown's ways are worth emulating and tells him
how he will try to be more like him because when you no longer forgive
you only hurt yourself. Ben Johnson and Slim Pickens are the two actors
who play the clowns principal tormentors. Johnson's character hates the
clown because the joy the clown brings to others is more than enough to
bring him contentment for his own life, and cruelty of the others only
hurts the others and to help them best he wishes nothing but goodness
upon them. Dub Taylor is the rodeo owner and is disgusted by the
tormentors and tells them how the clown before his accident was one of
the finest cowboys the rodeo ever had and the tormentors were never
even half the man the clown was let alone is now.
There's a B story going on in tandem with the main story of the clown. A lady horse performer is suffering her own private hell and wants nothing more than to die to end her suffering. The clown and his forgiving nature go a long way towards healing her.
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