The Virginian (1962–1971)
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The Stranger 

TV-PG | | Western | Episode aired 9 April 1969
The Virginian meets the loner, Garrison, on the trail and decides to hire him even though he doesn't socialize well with others. When Sam Marish who had a run in with Garrison is killed during a robbery, Garrison is arrested and tried.


Michael Caffey


Mel Goldberg, Owen Wister (novel)




Episode cast overview:
John McIntire ... Clay Grainger
Doug McClure ... Trampas (credit only)
David Hartman ... David Sutton
Sara Lane ... Elizabeth Grainger
James Drury ... The Virginian
Shelly Novack ... Garrison
John Doucette ... Arthur Willis
Michael Conrad ... Sam Marish
Lorraine Gary ... Laura
Ross Elliott ... Sheriff Mark Abbott
Paul Carr ... Frank Hodges
Jadeen Vaughn Jadeen Vaughn ... Sue
Michael Vandever ... Jo-Jo
Harry Swoger Harry Swoger ... Shaw
Harper Flaherty Harper Flaherty ... Harper


The Virginian encounters a stranger, Garrison, on a trip when both are victims of separate robberies by the same trio of outlaws. Garrison is very standoffish with everyone. Several of the Shiloh hands go to town to celebrate the engagement of Sam Marish to Sue Willis, the daughter of neighboring rancher Arthur Willis. A drunk Sam asks Garrison to drink with him but Garrison declines and eventually punches the aggressive Sam. Garrison tries to find a job in Medicine Bow but is rejected due to his personality. However, The Virginian finds him a reliable person and hires him at Shiloh. When Sam Marish is murdered and Willis is shot and robbed, Garrison is thought by the community to be guilty based on his actions and the fact he was at Willis' home alone delivering a bill of sale to Willis from Grainger. The local newspaper reporter Laura doesn't help when she writes a column all but declaring Garrison guilty to the dismay of The Virginian. However, The Virginian is not so sure but the ... Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

9 April 1969 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

21 August 2013 | by pfors-647-501497See all my reviews

Seven years into the series' run, this minor but revealing episode's title could as easily apply to The Virginian as the sullen lone wolf Garrison, played by former pro footballer Shelly Novack. Drury's character identifies a kindred spirit in this isolated individual who keeps to himself and won't be prodded or pushed. Garrison also recognizes the invisible bond between them. In the midst of a struggle, the two men suddenly burst out in gales of laughter, a puzzling moment but clearly cathartic for them both. Drury never shared such a pointed exchange with David Hartman, who laid an egg with his recurring role as philosophical cow puncher David Sutton. Hartman's character was written out of the last act of this, his final appearance in the series, which just about says it all.

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