"Absolution" is that rare episode that shows us Johnny Yuma during the war, on the run from Union soldiers led by Colonel Jeff Morgan (Barry Atwater, later seen in "The Executioner"). Having escaped confinement, the only place he could find sanctuary was at the plantation of his lover Genavieve (Gloria Talbott), whose home has become a Union headquarters, losing both her father and brother to the war, with nothing left intact but her property. Johnny is angered by the fact that she allows romantic overtures from Colonel Morgan to ensure her safety, but when the two are about to embrace he loses his perspective and blindly attacks the colonel. Despite Genavieve's insistence that she has never seen the rebel before, breaking into her room and threatening her life, Morgan doubts her story and tries to get the truth out of a silent and sullen Yuma. Though the rebel escapes, Genavieve grieves for the soldier she believes was killed because of her and years later, now married to Colonel Morgan, calls for Johnny in an alcoholic haze, seeking forgiveness from a man her husband convinced her was dead. Barry Atwater was extremely prolific in television, but remembered primarily for two iconic roles: the Vulcan Surak in STAR TREK's "The Savage Curtain" and vampire Janos Skorzeny in Darren McGavin's "The Night Stalker." Gloria Talbott will always be associated with the science fiction titles that she starred in, "The Cyclops," "Daughter of Dr. Jekyll," "I Married a Monster from Outer Space," and "The Leech Woman," though she was far busier in TV Westerns like this one.
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