Gunsmoke (1955–1975)
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Just before he's to be hung, stage robber Shadler busts out of jail, by slugging his last rites priest and donning the robes as a disguise. While burglarizing an uninhabited farm, the ... See full summary »


Arnold Laven


Jim Byrnes




Episode cast overview, first billed only:
James Arness ... Matt Dillon
Milburn Stone ... Doc (credit only)
Amanda Blake ... Kitty (credit only)
Ken Curtis ... Festus
Buck Taylor ... Newly
Earl Holliman ... Boone Shadler
Diana Hyland ... Dallas Fair
Denver Pyle ... Cyrus Himes
Linda Watkins ... Abby Shadler
Pat Conway ... Varnum
Ken Lynch ... McKee
John Davis Chandler ... Rogers
Don 'Red' Barry ... Dobson (as Donald Barry)
James Jeter James Jeter ... Creech
John Carter ... Father Walsh


Just before he's to be hung, stage robber Shadler busts out of jail, by slugging his last rites priest and donning the robes as a disguise. While burglarizing an uninhabited farm, the escapee helps Deputy U.S. Marshal Newly elude hostile lawmen quarantining a nearby outpost struck by a mysterious plague. Newly believes his pursuers are actually a ring of vultures waiting to loot the dying settlement. When Newly heads back to the besieged town, the fake padre insists on riding with him to minister to the dying citizens. Why is the hardened Shadler risking his health and freedom to throw in with law enforcement? Written by David Stevens

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Did You Know?


Third and final appearance of Earl Holliman. Sixth and final appearance of Linda Watkins. Fourteenth and final appearance or Denver Pyle. All three actors played different characters in each of their episode. See more »


Boone Shadler: [Dallas Fair is comforting the dying Shadler after being shot] I wish you'd come when I asked you.
Dallas Fair: I'm sorry.
Boone Shadler: Are those tears over me?... I'll be damned.
Dallas Fair: I don't think you will.
See more »

User Reviews

A lot of excellent material untouched in this episode
10 June 2013 | by kfo9494See all my reviews

Boone Shadler, a robber, is set for hanging at the state prison. A priest comes in to give him his last rites when Shadler knocks him out and escapes wearing the priest's robe.

In another part of Kansas, Newly is stopped by some people wearing sheriff badges and told the town that he was to enter has a breakout of the plague and he cannot enter. Newly does not like the way these men look and when he shows his Deputy Marshal badge the men try to jump him.

Newly gets away to a farmhouse where Shadler has just arrived. Newly, thinking Shadler is a priest and asks him to go with him so they can enter the town. This is fine with Shadler since he has money hidden in the small town. The rest of the episode deals with the sickness, Shadler's attempt to get to his money and the villains set on robbing the town.

The show was interesting in the approach of the town but could have concentrated more with the interesting people. However, with the fine actors and the and nice writing this show was at least interesting to the end. There was a lot of good material untouched in this show which would have made the episode much more enjoyable.

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Release Date:

15 January 1973 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

CBS Television Network See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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