Bonanza (1959–1973)
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The Desperado 

It's a case of reverse racism, as a white-hating black outlaw couple kidnap Hoss and scheme to kill him.


Philip Leacock


David Dortort (created by), George Lovell Hayes




Episode cast overview:
Lorne Greene ... Ben Cartwright
Dan Blocker ... Eric 'Hoss' Cartwright
Michael Landon ... Joseph 'Little Joe' Cartwright
Louis Gossett Jr. ... Buck Walter (as Lou Gossett)
Ramon Bieri ... Sheriff Solomon Budd
Marlene Clark ... Liza Walter
Michael T. Mikler ... Thad (as Mike Mikler)
George Dunn ... Andy
Sandy Rosenthal Sandy Rosenthal ... Davy Bent


It's a case of reverse racism, as a white-hating black outlaw couple kidnap Hoss, hold him hostage in the mountains and scheme to kill him. The couple are on the run from the law after killing a white burglar (who killed their son), and they surmise that the law looks the other way when whites kill blacks but persecute with a vengeance when blacks are the killers. Written by Brian Rathjen <>

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Did You Know?


Sheriff Solomon Budd: How much?
Thad: How much what?
Sheriff Solomon Budd: Reward. What's Daddy Ledbetter offerin' for Buck?
Thad: Two thousand. And he don't want no trial.
Sheriff Solomon Budd: I'm listenin'...
Thad: For what?
Sheriff Solomon Budd: The rest of it. Is that the price for one or both?
Thad: Two thousand, apiece.
Sheriff Solomon Budd: I knew it. You come chargin' up our trail like a cyclone wind, you're chasin' money.
Thad: Sonny Ledbetter was a friend of mine. AS a matter of fact, he was my best friend.
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(Theme Song)
Written by Jay Livingston and Ray Evans
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User Reviews

Racism and family
30 September 2016 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Lou Gossett Jr. and Marlene Clark play a black couple who hatch a scheme to kidnap a rich white guy and hold him for ransom. A little payback for the white people who ran off the newly emancipated slaves off their place and killed their child. Gossett killed one of them and that's why they're on the run. Gossett and Clark also steal the show from the regulars.

The rich white guy they capture is Hoss Cartwright and Ben and Little Joe are on their trail just looking to get back a family member. There's also a posse less concerned with that and more concerned with the reward for Gossett.

This Bonanza story is an uncompromising look at racism and family in the old west. The scenes with Dan Blocker and Lou Gossett are well done.

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Release Date:

7 February 1971 (USA) See more »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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