Stories of the Century: Season 1, Episode 2

Billy the Kid (30 Jan. 1954)

TV Episode  |  Approved  |   |  Western
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In the second entry of this Emmy-award winning series, all filled with archive footage from Republic Pictures theatrical features, railroad detective Matt Clark (Jim Davis), and his ... See full summary »


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Title: Billy the Kid (30 Jan 1954)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Mary Castle ...
Richard Travis ...
Robert 'Buzz' Henry ...
Mose Stanton


In the second entry of this Emmy-award winning series, all filled with archive footage from Republic Pictures theatrical features, railroad detective Matt Clark (Jim Davis), and his assistant Frankie Adams (Mary Castle), set out on the trail of a gang of cattle rustlers led by one of the West's youngest and most notorious outlaws, Billy Bonney (Richard Jaeckel), aka Billy the Kid. Written by Les Adams <>

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Release Date:

30 January 1954 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


When Matt Clark is beaten up by the toughs in the saloon he bleeds profusely from his head wound. However right after when he conceals himself under a tarp on a wagon and is discovered by the sheriff, all trace of blood is gone. See more »

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User Reviews

"You don't know who I am, do you Mister?"
19 February 2015 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

To say that these 'Stories of the Century' adopted a good deal of poetic license in telling their story would be an understatement. But at least they kept some semblance of history in mind by dropping nuggets of information into the script to keep things interesting. This one for example mentioned that Billy the Kid had killed twenty one men by the time he died, one for each year of his life. No way to know if that count is a hundred percent, but that's the legend.

Just like the episode that opened this series with a story about Belle Starr, the character of Frankie Adams (Mary Castle) is seen working undercover, this time as a piano player in a Western saloon. She teams with Railroad Detective Matt Clark (Jim Davis) to track down and help capture famous desperadoes of the Old West. Matt actually takes a pretty good beat down from Billy's gang in this one. But even though he's left bleeding profusely from a wound on his head, when he conceals himself on a wagon heading out of town driven by one of the outlaws, the blood is gone and he looks good as new.

As one might expect, a name closely linked with William Bonney's history shows up in the story. Pat Garrett's (Richard Travis) on the trail of Billy for the murder of Sheriff William Brady (historically, one of Billy's Regulators killed Brady in an ambush) and tracks him down to a cabin where he faces The Kid in a showdown. Of course Matt Clark is on hand to witness the proceedings, as he would be for the final death or capture of any number of these infamous outlaws.

Richard Jaeckel was a cool choice to portray Billy; he had the look of a brash young outlaw and had that hot head thing down pat. Four years earlier in "The Gunfighter", Jaeckel's character Eddie made the mistake of challenging Gregory Peck's Jimmy Ringo. There's a reason outlaws didn't live very long in the Old West.

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