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"Alias Smith and Jones" 21 Days to Tenstrike (TV Episode 1972) - Plot Summary Poster

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  • Heyes and Curry, unable to find work because of an economic depression, accept a rancher's offer of pay plus a fat bonus if they can help herd cattle to a Colorado town. Soon, one of the cattle-drive hands picks a fight with Curry, which ends in a no-decision despite the beating Curry takes. The next morning, the trail boss finds the hand stabbed to death with a stiletto knife. Curry doesn't own one and neither does anyone else on the drive, but because of the fight he's the main suspect. When a second murder in the same fashion occurs when Curry is chained to a wagon wheel for the night, Curry is set loose, but the team is getting extremely edgy because of the murders and because the rancher and the hands lose everything if they don't make the town by the deadline of the title. Curry thinks the two murder victims recognized him from a holdup and maybe confided in their killer, but who might that be? When the cook utters an ill-chosen remark about the rancher's wife (who's traveling with the group and congratulated Curry on holding his own in the fight, a third stiletto murder occurs. The boys must confide in the cook, who then figures out who the murderer is and swears revenge. Curiously, Walter Brennan did this episode as trail cook Gantry in BETWEEN his stints as con artist Silky O'Sullivan that season. Dick Cavett plays the sheriff of Tenstrike, the destination town, in a cameo designed to cross-promote his show and this one, both drawing marginal ratings.


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