Volume 1, Issue 1
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SEASON 1
The Kid
Gunfighter
Home of the Brave
Speak No Evil
Bad Blood
Black Ulysses
Ten-Cent Hero
False Colors
A Good Day to Die
End of Innocence
Blind Love
The Keepsake
Fall From Grace
Hard Time
Lady For a Night
Unfinished Business
Decoy
Daddy's Girl
Bulldog
Matched Pair
Man Behind the Badge
Then There Was One
Gathering Clouds Part 1
Gathering Clouds Part 2

SEASON 1 WRAP-UP

AN INTERVIEW WITH ... ED SPIELMAN

SEASON 2
Born to Hang
Ghosts

   
The Rider Review - Decoy
By Johnny Betts

August 28, 2002

PROLOGUE

Welp, Stephanie and I are gonna be heading for vacation on Sunday, September 1. We won't be back until Saturday, September 7. Then Stephanie's birthday is on September 8, so the next week and a half will be BUSY. If you send me mail and don't hear from me for a while then this paragraph should explain everything.

What I want to know is who is more dedicated to their fans than I am? I did everything I had to do to finish this review BEFORE I went on vacation. I wanted to leave y'all with a little something before I took a little break. I aim to please.

I don't have a lot of time, so let's breeze through all of the opening stuff so that we can get straight to the review. First off, reader awards!

Most Recent Guestbook Signers: We've got three more brave souls who stepped up and accepted the challenge: Maria Elena Velarde from Peru (wow, look at how far the influence of the Rider Review stretches!), Wendy from The Young Riders Express Station - the very first Young Riders website on the net, and Mandy from West Virginia who thinks I'm "teh winz." These gals took the JOHNNY BETTS GUESTBOOK CHALLENGE!!! Who will be next? Maybe you? Come on everybody, I've gotta have a signature for September!

Rider Review Marks of the Last Review: Karen Myatt and Ann Salvon stepped up to the plate and helped me out with some requests. Their generosity and selflessness have earned them Rider Review Marks of the Last Review honors. Thank you ladies, I am most appreciative.

I already know who has the inside track on winning the award for the next review. I think this California gal knows who she is as well. Here's a new award I just came up with:

The Screenshots w/captions Marks of the Last Review: Nesciri and Ann from Oregon. Nesciri made the following observation: I must say that your images are underrated - the text to them are priceless - especially "Cody drifts off during another one of Kid's 'Katy stories'...LOL"

And Ann is the only one who made it known that she caught a subtlety I added to one of the pictures: And the one photo of the wanted poster in the office...of none other than you... Johnny Betts.

Best Use of the Rider Review: Lindsay. She reads the review and THEN watches the episode that I just reviewed so she'll know what to look for. This is an EXCELLENT idea, and it's exactly what I hoped people would use the reviews for. If you have the episodes on tape, then I strongly recommend watching them after reading the review, it'll add so much to your enjoyment.

Rider Review Newcomers: The Canadian Cowgirl - Lori D and Mandy Silver.

READER OBSERVATIONS

Looks like just about everybody loved Stephanie's comments in the "Unfinished Business" review. Since my readership is mostly female (the chicks dig Johnny Betts), y'all seemed to like hearing what my better half had to say. Like Aimee said, y'all have heard OF Stephanie for so long, so it was time to hear FROM her. Wendy even went so far as to compare us to the great duos of all time (Pauly Shore and Stephen Baldwin, Sonny and Cher, etc.). So look for more comments from Stephanie in the future.

Steph: Like right now! Notice how much better the review is already!

Everybody also pretty much agreed that Crandall was a punk loser who deserved far worse than what he got, and that Emma was way too harsh towards Sam. Now for just a couple of other things...

JB: "Crandall fires and shoots Comstock. Wow, what a clean shot, there was NO BLOOD whatsoever!"

Raye: I got your back on this one. Evan Crandall was just a really evil man ... so evil that his bullets were burnin' hot with the fires of Hell. He shot Comstock and those fires cauterized the wound. Voila! No blood! All nice and pretty ... well, not really pretty ... but whatever!

JB: That's the only explanation that makes sense. So this means that Crandall was in fact a demon sent to earth packin' Satan's six-shooters. Either that or the fake beard was a demon that attached itself to Crandall's face and possessed him. Even when he finally removed the fake beard, he wasn't able to remove the demon possession. Truly tragic.

Rhi made this comment after the "Lady For a Night" review, but I forgot to mention it earlier:

Rhi: About Lou getting in the bath, I absolutely completely totally refuse to believe that she would be riding around with the pony express, pretending to be a guy, and would have perfectly shaved legs. nope. wrong. refuse to believe it. least believable thing about the whole believing-Lou's-a-guy plot of this series.

JB: I've gotta agree. When we see Lou's bare legs we can see that they're as smooth as Elizabeth Hurley's bottom. I'm sorry, but there would've been at least some stubble on her legs! Do you expect me to believe she found time to shave her legs while on her ride?

Steph: Dittos from me. I hardly ever shave my legs, so where on earth did Lou find the time to shave hers?!

Before everybody starts thinking Steph walks around with hairy legs, please rest assured that I make sure she shaves her legs AT LEAST once a week, although more would be even better. Hairy legs on a woman -- not attractive.

Steph: And what's this with EH's bottom? You're gonna pay dearly for that comment. Oh yes. Dearly.

That's all right, it'll have been worth every penny. Besides, you made your little Sam comments in the last review, so I think I've earned the right to make one innocent little analogy.

JOHNNY BETTS VS. AN IKE FAN?

Waitstill Baxter didn't give any specifics, but she had this to say:

Finally, I now have possesion of your glove. I'll be the next one to stand up to you. Ike does not need to be made fun of most of the time. JB, be nice to him. He got stuck a bald mute for life (in a time when that was not well looked upon) and didn't become a bitter person. Can you imagine what a whiny &%#$@ Kid would have become if that happened to him? Admit it, no rider would have taken it so well! We will undoubtedly take up this conversation as soon as you respond.

Waitstill, I AM nice to Ike! I've even gone so far as to label him the "hardcore rider." Sure, I have some fun with his sign language, but man does he get off easy compared to Kid. For the most part he sails through my reviews unscathed, but when he starts acting like a baby again then I WILL call him on it. Feel free to tell me what you think I said about Ike that was wrong, and I'll be sure to show you why it was NOT wrong.

Steph: You should have said Lou's legs were as smooth as Ike's bald head. You would have averted my wrath and been more on topic.

Yeah, but the mental image isn't as fun.

KID FAN CRUELTY

Marie: I have all the episodes, not edited, and no commercials on VHS :) Oh, and one more thing (which I think is kind of important...) they are all dubbed in french! and of course, they are not in NTSC but in PAL. LOL Still interested? I know this is cruel, but ... I am a Kid fan! ;)

Low blow, low blow indeed. However, if your episodes are dubbed in French then that means that YOU aren't listening to the voices of the real actors and therefore YOU aren't able to enjoy the YR in its purest form. Not laughing so loud now, are ya?

TRIVIA QUESTION ANSWERED

Welp, two people knew what my Dick Dietrick reference was -- Raye and Wendy. Good job gals. But only one person knew who had tried to get a part in "Lonesome Dove." Well, she guessed, but hey, she guessed correctly! Now Wendy made an educated guess and went with Anthony Zerbe. Unfortunately, that answer is incorrect. Excellent try though. I think Zerbe would've been perfect as an old Texas Ranger on "Lonesome Dove." The person who got the answer correct was none other than RHIANNON!

I haven't said anything in a while, so I am going to make a random guess at the trivia question ... Josh. Ty was too busy making commercials to try out for a mini-series.

Rhi admitted it was a guess, but it was an educated guess. Don't you like how she was able to artfully eliminate Ty from the list of possibilities? I don't know what part Josh tried out for, but in an old teen magazine article my sister has, it said that he wanted "any part" on the mini-series, and not getting a part was his biggest acting disappointment. Personally, if they ever make a mini-series out of "Comanche Moon," I think he would be the perfect choice to be a young Woodrow Call. As many of you may know, Call was played by Tommy Lee Jones in "LD."

I don't have any trivia questions this week, but Beth F. poses the following survey question:

If the Young Riders were food, what would they be?

Answers will be posted in the next review.

CELEBRITY BOXING CHALLENGE

In the last review I touched on the unbelievability of Kid being able to rough Jimmy up in a fight. Wendy seems to find this as implausible as I do, and she has issued the following challenge:

I want to see Ty Miller and Josh Brolin in the ring together right now! In fact, I think we should start a petition to get them on Celebrity Boxing!! I want them in a cage with no ref. Then we'll see who hits the mat first and that will put an end to the incomprehensible blather about this age-old debate. That's it, I'm off to send a letter to FOX.

Good idea, Wendy. Send me the petition, and I'll gladly put my name on the list. However, there could be a problem with Ty being part of the match. To be on "Celebrity Boxing" you have to be a celebrity. But hey, if Screech can be on there then maybe they'd let Ty participate also.

Steph: Haha!

MY LATEST YR EBAY PURCHASE

YR Poster Man, the other day I totally got caught up in a bidding war for a Young Riders poster. I totally went crazy, but I won the poster. The price? A whopping $43.50 after shipping and handling! Right after I won the auction I just kept asking Stephanie, "What have I done? Did I mess up?" Stephanie calmed me down and said hey, it's all right to splurge once in a while. I now have the only two types of Young Riders posters that were made.

Steph: I can't believe you're admitting this to the entire world.

My name is Johnny. I'm a Riderholic.

But why do frames have to cost so much?? The cheapest wooden 24X18 frame I could find was $13.99. Unbelievable. If anybody reading this was one of the people trying to win that poster then I'm sorry, but when Johnny really wants something, he usually gets it.

Steph: And is the frame even real wood?

Probably as real as Michael Jackson's face.

PEOPLE I DON'T WANT TO SEE IN TIGHT JEANS

Marlon Brando.

August 26, 2002

DECOY

I started this review on August 6, but that mainly consisted of jotting down the facts. Now it's time for me to run through and start adding that "Johnny Betts magic." Because what would the Rider Review be without that Johnny Betts magic?

Reader: Funny?
Johnny: You know, the last thing I need is your attitude!

Decoy. Whattaya know, it's a Cody episode! It's about time he got his own episode. What was the hold up?? We've seen multiple Kid and Lou episodes but no Cody episodes yet? That's just not right. And as you'll see, it's an excellent episode for Stephen Baldwin to demonstrate his acting range. Kind of like "Bio-Dome." "Bio-Dome" also allowed Stephen a good chance to demonstrate his range of judgment.

The Usual Suspects: Good Judgment
Bio-Dome: Baaaaad Judgment

That's kind of how that works.

This opening scene is just hilarious. We see Cody in a black suit standing in the dusty street of what appears to be a ghost town. The wind blows, making doors shut violently. An anonymous bad guy with a mustache walks out onto the street followed by three of his buddies. Close-ups of Cody's eyes and the bad guy's eyes let us know that this is some serious business. Another bad guy positions himself behind a barrel. Yet another bad guy is riding his horse in slow motion. Cody sure has his work cut out for him. Cody then draws his guns and starts to take out the bad guys. I love it when he points his gun over his shoulder and without even looking he shoots a guy off the roof. He then spins his guns around and puts them in the holster. I've always loved the "spin the gun around on the finger" move. In fact, I used to practice that on my toy gun all the time. Still do, actually.

Goalpost How many people out there have seen "Tombstone"? Awesome movie. I love the part where Doc Holliday (played by Val Kilmer) mocks Johnny Ringo (played by Michael Biehn) by spinning around a cup. You have to see it to have any idea what I'm talking about.

Steph: I'll say. I've never seen "Tombstone." Shame on you for not forcing me to watch it.

WHAT?!?!?! YOU HAVE TOO SEEN TOMBSTONE!!!!!!! Back when we first met I was surprised you'd never seen it so we rented it. Man. Nice to see that's not exactly a memory you've held tightly to over the years. Unbelievable.

Steph: Oopsie.

A woman runs to Cody's side. They start to kiss. She's about to stab Cody, but he stops her, continues kissing, and pushes her away (holy cow, sounds like my high school years!). He starts to walk away but stops just in time to throw his Marshal badge on the ground.

It turns out that Cody is reading a book called "The Man in Black." Cody's reading a Johnny Cash biography? Weird. Hey, you know what Cody likes about literature? The way it makes life so much richer. Cody says this with his big, goofy Cody grin and then says, "Know what I mean?" Hahahaha, Cody just has a way of delivering lines that cracks me up. Jimmy doesn't agree that what Cody's reading can be considered literature (the same argument could be made for half the crap I had to read in high school, "As I Lay Dying," anyone?), and Lou reminds Cody about what Marcus did to Jimmy in "Ten-Cent Hero." Ooooooh, continuity!

Cody says he's gotta have something to do between rides, and besides, it's fun and helps a man better himself. Whoa, CODY IS ACTUALLY REFERRING TO THE RIDER REVIEW! It's like I always say - yes, the Rider Review is here to entertain you, but it's also a public service. Let me just take a moment to say "thank you" to the writers for throwing a few props my way. Preesh.

Jimmy agrees that Cody could sure use a little self-improvement. Lou then tells Cody that if that's what he's looking for then he should try reading the Bible. Cody says he already read it and sticks his tongue out at Lou. Hahahaha. Jimmy says that means he looked at the pictures. Ah, these two had excellent chemistry. This is gonna be the first "Classic Scene" nominee of the episode. We'll call it, "the scene where Cody reads 'The Man in Black' and discusses it with Jimmy and Lou." You know what I like about my "Classic Scene" names? They're always short and to the point. Know what I mean? *Johnny says with a big, goofy grin*

More than anything, this scene shows us that Cody's a dreamer. And as Eddie Wilson would say, "The world needs dreamers."

Steph: Hey readers -- this quote is more on-topic than you might realize. Michael Pare played Eddie Wilson in "Eddie and the Cruisers" with Joe Pantoliano who starred in "The Goonies" with JOSH BROLIN!

BOOYA!

Back when I was just a wee lad, a little Johnny Betts some would say, I would daydream about living in the Old West. I was always a Hickok-type character, and the bad guy calling me out would usually be played by a teacher I didn't like or something.

Mr. Hannaman: Betts!
Johnny: You lookin' for me?
Mr. Hannaman: I hear you've got a problem with me.
Johnny: Well, to be honest with you, my problem is with that neon yellow shorts and shirt outfit you're wearing.
Mr. Hannaman: You know, boy, I don't think I like you're attitude.

*Johnny holds up a coin*

Johnny: When it lands.

*Johnny tosses the coin in the air. As it plummets to the ground in slow motion both men get ready to draw their guns. Mr. Hannaman's holster is setting low against his neon yellow shorts. It doesn't paint a picture of danger. The coin slowly hits the ground, unsettling the dust in the process. Each man draws his gun and fires. Mr. Hannaman hits the ground face first. The sun reflects off of Mr. Hannaman's neon shorts right into the eyes of Mr. Thomason who was hiding behind a barrel waiting to shoot Johnny in the back. The reflection of the sun causes Mr. Thomason to misfire giving Johnny time to spin around, fire his gun, and make Thomason just another notch on his gun belt. Johnny stands tall.*

Johnny: Class dismissed.

There was also the time that I probably got a tad bit carried away with my daydreaming.

Ms. Goiter Neck: Johnny! You didn't finish mowing my lawn like you promised! We had a deal, young man!
Johnny: Oh, I'm sorry, but I wasn't aware that sprinkling your goiter flakes into my lemonade was part of our deal. Sorry, but the deal's off, old woman.
Ms. Goiter Neck: Why you little brat. Somebody needs to teach you a lesson!
Johnny: And that's gonna be you? Yeah, I don't think so. But you know, I would like to know exactly what you're hiding in that goiter of yours. Here's what I'll do - tell me what's in the goiter and I'll finish mowing your lawn.
Ms. Goiter Neck: You don't understand, there's only one way you're going to find out.

*Johnny knew that a challenge had been laid down. He slowly nodded at Ms. Goiter Neck and they proceeded to draw their guns. Johnny was too young and too quick for the old woman. He fired his shot at the large goiter on her neck splitting it open like a pinata. Johnny stood their shocked to see handfuls of candy pouring from the goiter.*

I didn't eat candy for a week after conjuring up that image.

Rider coming! Kid hands a pouch off to Lou. Good, hopefully we won't see much of her this episode. Kid's starved and hopes Emma's cooking supper. Bad news for Kid - Emma and Sam are heading to a wedding. Looks like Jimmy's gonna be doing the cooking. Why? When did Jimmy ever show any sort of cooking ability?

Steph: Isn't Jimmy good at anything he tries??

Well, that's true. Good call!

Man, that's why they had Lou go on a ride. The writers were too scared to have her do the cooking. They were obviously afraid they'd be labeled as sexist. They didn't know exactly how to handle the issue so they just sent Lou off on a ride.

Ike and Buck Cody tells Sam to remember that when she catches the "boo-kay" not to shoot it out of her hand. My favorite line is when Cody refers to the fact that the wedding date was moved up, "Amazing what a shotgun can do to a body's social calendar." So true. There were many times when I flat-out told my mom that I was not going to various family activities (reunions, birthday parties, etc.), and there was nothing she could do about it. Pulling my dad's 12-gauge off the rack and shoving it in my face showed me that there WAS something she could do about it. I'll make that the first "Mark-Out Remark" of the episode.

STEPHANIE FORCES JOHNNY TO MENTION TY FROM TRADING SPACES

How many of y'all have ever watched the show "Trading Spaces"? Stephanie is addicted to the show, and since Sam isn't in this episode much, Stephanie wanted me to mention that she thinks Ty the carpenter reminds her of a young Brett Cullen. Stephanie's lucky that the show has Paige, Laurie, and Hilda running around in tight little pants else I couldn't take much more of it. I'd say that 90% of the room designs are totally ugly. I especially hate it when one the feminine male designers totally IGNORES a request. "Please, do whatever you want, just don't mess with my couch." Dude will then proceed to have the couch reupholstered. If that happened to me I'd be reupholstering the designer's face. Unless it was Laurie, then I'd give her a big hug and tell her what a great job she did.

Steph: Ty can carpenter me any day! Mmm. I can watch the same episode over and over as Johnny will sadly tell you.

"Sadly" is right. And why can you make comments like that about Ty (NOT Miller) but object to Elizabeth Hurley analogies?? Double standard!

Teaspoon gathers the riders together and tells them about an important document that Ft. Laramie needs delivered to Ft. Miles to the Under-Secretary of war. Teaspoon asks who's up next for a ride, but Cody steps up and volunteers, explaining that this mission should go to the bravest, best-looking, and best "red rider" he's got, and hey, he just happens to be available! Hahaha. That's just funny. I love the looks on the faces of Ike, Jimmy, and Buck after Cody says all this.

As Cody mounts his horse he mentions that he'd like to know exactly what the big deal is. Teaspoon really has no clue but trusts that it's important. Cody has another funny line when he looks at Jimmy and says, "I'll, uh, bring you a pretty little apron when I come home." Jimmy smirks and then slaps Cody's horse causing it to buck. Cody yells out, "I'll take care of you when I get back, Hickok!" Teaspoon doesn't normally condone that type of action, but in this case he feels Cody deserved it. Teaspoon and Jimmy look at each other and nod. Hahaha, now THIS is what I love about the show. Interactions like this between the characters. Ahhhh, I'm starting to forget "Lady For a Night" already.

All right, we've already seen Cody demonstrate his goofiness, humor, and ego. What character trait will he put on display next??? You know, I got an email a long time ago from a girl asking me why I liked Cody. She claimed that "everybody else" thought he was an idiot and didn't like him. I don't buy that. From what I've heard, most people like Cody. He's not an idiot. Is he goofy? Yep, but that's what most people find endearing about him.

Cody's receiving the important documents from some army Major dude. Cody says he should make the delivery in two days rather than the estimated two and a half days. You see, the Pony Express riders have a reputation for speed. Rumor has it that Robert Downey Jr. heard about this and BEGGED for a role on the show. Bearded army dude tells Cody that no matter what he is to deliver the document to Under-Secretary Stanfield personally. Cody promises not to disappoint. Much the same way Johnny promises to never disappoint with the Rider Review.

As Cody is leaving, he bumps into ... TOM SELLECK! TOM SELLECK IS GUEST STARRING ON THE YOUNG RIDERS AS AN ARMY CAPTAIN! Somehow Selleck guesses that Cody is from the Pony Express. He says he's read about them but doesn't see what the fuss is all about. Cody really puts him in his place when he responds with, "Psh." YOU GO CODY! WAY TO TELL HIM! CODY! CODY! CODY! RA-RA-RA-RA-RAISE DA ROOF!

Baby's Eye View Back at the way station Kid finds a baby left on the porch. The mother left a note asking them to take care of her. It's funny when we see the baby's point-of-view and all the riders lean over and look in the little baby basket. Jimmy says he's already doing the cooking and cleaning, so how much more can mothering be? Well, Jimmy, have you ever tried nursing? GOOD LUCK!

Steph: I'd give nursing on Jimmy a try! BOOYA!

Well, platonically speaking, Jimmy does have a nice chest. I'M JUST STATING FACTS!

Cody's riding towards his destination when he's approached by three "soldiers." Maybe they are real soldiers, but I'm just not sure. One of the men claims to be Lieutenant Gibbons and they've been sent to relieve Cody of the documents. Cody then shocks me when he says, "Well Lieutenant, I'm afraid I'm gonna have to relieve myself of that last glass of sarsaparilla," and then proceeds to let a stream of not-so-sweet water trickle down the Lieutenant's shirt.

Well, maybe that's not exactly what happened. Cody actually asks to see the orders in writing. As Gibbons acts like he's going to get the orders, one of the other "soldiers" starts to draw his gun. Cody's too fast though and swings his rifle into action. Cody tells them to dismount. Bad guy #3 says, "He's just got one shot." Cody responds with, "That's right, and you're the closest, Lieutenant." The "soldiers" get off their horses. Now see, this shows that Cody is NOT an idiot.

Lieutenant: You're making a mistake, boy.
Cody: It ain't the first.

Cody made this same comment in "False Colors" when he stopped one of Jed's false-colored soldiers from harassing a lady. What are the writers trying to tell us about Cody? That he makes a lot of mistakes and has a problem with crooked/fake soldiers?

Steph: HAHA!

Cody makes them remove their gun belts and scatter their horses. He says they'll have his apology if he's making a mistake. He takes off.

Back at the bunkhouse the riders are still looking at the baby. Kid says that she looks a little like Ike with her bald head. Man, good job of making fun of bald people, Kid. Jimmy comments on how the baby drools like Cody, hahaha. All of a sudden we hear somebody yelling for Teaspoon. Mr. T tiptoes out of the bunkhouse to see what's going on.

Some guy named Ben (not Seaver) has come to talk about the special delivery that Cody is carrying. Ben mentions that war is coming and Cody is carrying a list of officers that the army thinks may have divided loyalties. Ben doesn't think Teaspoon has anything to worry about. Yeah right. Cody's traveling hundreds of miles of tough terrain carrying a document that people are willing to kill for, but Teaspoon really has nothing to worry about.

Meanwhile, Cody comes upon some gunfire. Some terrible actor gets shot. Cody runs beside him and hides behind a rock. Cody shoots a guy up on a mountain/hill. How does Cody know who's good and who's bad? I think I would've been a little more cautious about which stranger I started shooting at. Mr. Bad Actor horribly chokes out some lines about how some guys are trying to capture "Bart." Cody tells the dude he'll take care of things. When he goes to find Bart he sees that it's a really huge bear. In all fairness, Bart's owner in the show isn't really an actor; he was Bart's real-life trainer. His fake death scene shows us all why he should stick to training bears. But it also shows that *I* deserved more of a guest-starring role than he did.

Jimmy's Spurs Teaspoon is trying to keep the baby entertained. Jimmy comes in with some spurs. Teaspoon doesn't seem impressed. Jimmy, a little upset that Teaspoon wasn't more appreciative, says they're shiny and they make noises. Teaspoon says yes, but so is his gun but he wouldn't give that to the baby. Poor Jimmy, he's not too happy, "What do I know anyway?" Buck hopes he knows more about cooking than taking care of a baby. Teaspoon asks Jimmy what they're having for dinner. Jimmy's reaction is hilarious. He's all perturbed, throws a rag (or does some violent motion with some sort of cloth material), says he's working on it, and makes a mean face. Hahaha, good stuff, the funniest part is that when Jimmy leaves we see that he's wearing an apron. But it should be noted that it's a very manly apron, not a little sissy-boy apron like Kid would probably use.

Teaspoon figures he better go check on the menu and asks if anybody wants to hold the baby. Buck, Ike, and Kid hold their arms out. Teaspoon hands her off to Buck. Uh-oh, Teaspoon makes a face and wipes his hand on his shirt. Looks like he handed her off just in time. That's pretty nasty. If a baby had just peed on my hand there's NO WAY I would wipe my hand on my shirt. I'd hold my hand out as far from my body as I could and then I would sprint to the nearest piece of soap that I could find.

Steph: Just like I do when I wash your underwear.

Oh whatever. No one's as obsessively hygienic as I am.

Teaspoon wore the same pee-stained shirt for the rest of the episode too. Disgusting.

Buck wonders what kind of mother would just leave her child like that. AN ABUSIVE SKANK OF A MOTHER, THAT'S WHAT KIND! Kid says he wishes Lou would hurry up and get back. Why? Since when has she had experience with a baby? Buck gets wide-eyed and yells that the baby has just sprung a leak. Kid's hair probably scared her and made her pee herself, poor thing.

Steph: Maybe Kid was scared of the baby and he's the one who peed.

We're back to Cody and Bart the Bear. Man, it's painful to watch dude dying and choking out his final words about how Bart is his only family. It's not painful in the sense that it's a very sad and emotional scene and thus hard to watch. No, the acting is so bad that it just makes you cringe as each line is choked out in succession.

There's not much to report here. Dude takes about 10 minutes to say two sentences. He gives Cody his handkerchief and says he'll be fine as long as he has that. Cody helped get Bart out of the hole with just a couple of logs. Good job. They didn't actually show us the process of how Cody managed to get Bart to climb out of the hole with just two flimsy logs because I guess they didn't want us to suspend disbelief too much. This is a good job by the writers of not showing us more than we need to see. They didn't want to get too technical with the details of how exactly Cody got Bart out of the hole, so they just show Cody carrying two logs towards the hole and force our minds to fill in the blanks. Dude tells Cody to take care of the bear and then dies.

Steph: Hahaha.

The rest of this scene consists of Bart growling loudly and Cody trying to figure out what to do. Cody has one final confrontation with one of the guys trying to kill Bart. Now I just can't figure this part out. Cody and the bad guy are shooting at each other. The bad guy is FAR away from Cody. We're talking at least 50 - 100 yards. There's a little gully between the two hills they're on. But when Cody reloads his rifle the bad guy somehow manages to sneak up behind him IN ABOUT 10 SECONDS. There is NO WAY that was possible. But alas, Bart pounces on the dude and takes care of that bit of business.

I like when Cody buries Bart's owner and says a few words, "Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, may this man's spirit, never rust." Touching, very touching.

Bart the Bear Bart limps around a bit to show us that he's been trained to look like his leg hurts. Bart also nods his head a lot to make it look like he's answering Cody's questions. (Steph: hahaha.) The sole purpose of this scene was to cause people who were flipping channels to stop and say, "Hey, cool, a really big, trained bear. Let's watch!" Cody leaves the handkerchief on the grave and heads on his way.

Steph: My caption for the Bart the Bear picture is, "Stop in the name of love!"

I remember Entertainment Tonight had a segment about this episode when it originally aired. I don't remember what was said, I just remember Mary Hart being all perky about Bart the bear and then Stephen said a few words. Touching, huh?

Back at the bunkhouse the riders are trying to change the baby's diaper. Apparently it's a 5-man operation. I've got a 7-year old brother, and it wasn't too long ago when I had to change his diaper a couple of times. A fun experience it was not. One time was particularly bad.

Steph: I can attest to that. I was there and was scarred for life.

Seriously, I started gagging and almost threw up. I must've used about a half bottle of powder on him when I was done. Jimmy thought Teaspoon had experience in this area, but Mr. T explains that making them and taking care of them isn't the same thing. What a male ho. As the boys are politely laughing about this, Ike is magically making the baby stop crying.

Ike's blowing on the baby's stomach. Jimmy asks Ike if he's been holding out on them. Holding out on what? Ike and the baby really do look alike. So what are the writers trying to say? That bald-headed mutes are naturally better at dealing with babies? These writers and their stereotypes. Seriously, did Ike just have some sort of baby magic? Or could he just relate better to bald-headed people who couldn't talk? Hey! THAT'S IT! Neither Ike nor the baby had hair or the ability to talk, therefore, they had a special connection.

Youthful Ike Teaspoon hands Kid the dirty diaper and asks him to toss it in the washtub. Jimmy and Kid are showing looks of disgust, and then Jimmy says something that I cannot decipher. Neither Stephanie nor my sister could figure it out either. Jimmy says something like, "Go get some." But that doesn't make any sense. Does ANYBODY know what in the world Jimmy says there??? This has been puzzling me for years AND I NEED AN ANSWER!

Three new soldiers show up and start chasing Cody! LET'S RIDE! That reminds me of the time I went to see "Rob Roy" in the theater. A big chase scene (with horses) was just starting up and a guy sitting a few rows in front of me looked at his friend and said, "Let's ride!" Then he held his arm out in front of him to simulate horse riding. How gay is THAT?!?! My friend Baker's Dozen and I looked at each other and just shook our heads. You just shouldn't do things like that in public. Well, a GUY shouldn't do things like THAT in private either.

Steph: Hahaha.

Cody makes it up a hill and exchanges gunfire. He shoots one dude, but then he's shot! OH NO, CODY'S SHOT! Cody rolls some stones down the hill and they crush one of the other soldiers. Cody mounts his horse and makes his getaway. The horse climbs down a pretty steep hill; it's a pretty cool stunt. The remaining soldier doesn't fare as well. He's thrown from his horse and rolls down the hill. I guess he breaks his neck or something because he just lies there motionless.

Cody comes upon a cabin. He tells his horse to "cross his hooves" (haha) that these folks are friendly because he's in dire need of a meal. Cody enters the cabin with his rifle drawn. BREAKING AND ENTERING! He looks around. A crazy woman draws her gun on him. IT'S EVIL-LYN FROM HE-MAN! Cody knocks the gun out of her hand.

Cody's trying to find out what happened here, but Evil-Lyn just sits in a rocking chair and acts crazy. Does that remind anybody of their grandmother? It does? Y'ALL SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOURSELVES! Turns out her husband's dead, buried on her property. Evil-Lyn told Cody to look out the window to see her husband. She asks Cody if he sees him, and Cody says no. WAY TO NOT HUMOR HER! I would've said, "All I see is a grave WITH YOUR HUSBAND'S NAME ON IT!" She would've cried like a baby forced to watch "U.S. Seals," but hey, it would've been too good to pass up.

The original three "soldiers" are camping out and regretting the fact that they didn't shoot Cody when they had the chance. They then discuss the upcoming war a little. They don't seem to think Cody's gonna get through with the detachment. They've obviously never seen the opening credits to the show. So peep this my homeys - Cody is a main character, y'all are just three scrubs lucky to get a meal at the wrap party. I'm thinking Cody will deliver the detachment juuuuust fine.

Later that night Evil-Lyn tells Cody how some claim jumpers killed her husband because he wouldn't give up their land. Cody and Evil-Lyn settle in for a good night's sleep, but Evil-Lyn just keeps crying and won't shut up. She's obviously hoping that if she sobs loud enough Cody will eventually ask her what's wrong. It's like this dude at work who'll periodically limp around the halls moaning really loudly until someone asks him if he needs to be rushed to the emergency room. Dude will then seize the opportunity to blab on and on about his entire medical history. Consider this a warning -- if someone at work acts like they're on their last legs just say, "Toughen up, you'll live" and then ignore them the rest of the day. If by chance they pass out, then you'll know that they might not have been faking. Don't worry, someone will call 9-1-1 and all will be well. No need to thank me for this sage advice, it's all part of my public service.

Evil-Lyn The little skank eventually asks Cody to lie with her through the night. Cody gets up and gets in the bed, but immediately a gunshot pierces the window, breaking a lantern and causing a fire. The claim jumpers are back and they want them some land! And before any of you frequenters of Australian Ann's website, aka perverts, jump to any conclusions, I think it's pretty obvious that the only thing Cody was going to do was lie in her bed FULLY CLOTHED.

Cody manages to single-handedly kill all three claim jumpers. Man, he's just deadly! Cody's already killed SIX people in this episode. The most flamboyant of the kills occurs when Cody shoots some barrels that were outside and caused a HUGE explosion. I hope there was gunpowder or something in the barrels, else there's no explanation as to how that big of an explosion would have occurred.

GOOF ALERT

This is a VERY subtle goof, and if you're not paying careful attention you won't catch it. For most of this scene Cody IS NOT wearing his hat. But when he shoots out of the window and blows up the barrels, if you look really quickly in the top left-hand corner of the screen you can see that he has his hat on. Must have been stock footage. It's always fun to catch stuff like that.

Evil-Lyn used a vase her husband gave her as an anniversary gift to hit one of the claim jumpers that rushed into the house. After Cody shot him, Evil-Lyn gave a wild-eyed look at the broken vase. I'm sure that's supposed to have symbolic meaning about how her husband had just helped her beyond the grave or some such rubbish. What is this, "Crossing Over With John Edwards"? Man, what a joke of a show that is. You know, it's the one where the dude pretends to talk to dead people. "I'm seeing a 'G,' does that mean anything to anybody?" "I have a grandmother," an audience member replies. "AH! GRANDMOTHER! Yes, that's it!" Please. If this dude was really communicating with all of these dead relatives why wouldn't the communications be more direct? Couldn't they drop their name right away?

The next morning Cody is ready to head out. A cleaned up Evil-Lyn gives Cody her horse. Holy cow, Evil-Lyn's horse is HUGE! He's got some gigantic legs. I'm not sure, but it might be able to get the better of Bart the bear in a fight. Cody gives his horse a tearful goodbye. Evil-Lyn (who has some scary eyes, goodness, is she related to Lieutenant Cassidy from "End of Innocence"?) tells Cody that she's decided she needs to move on. She's pregnant and wants to go live with her relatives so as to provide a better life for her child. She might also want to get some counseling if she knows what's good for her child. Although I'm not so sure they had counseling back in the Old West.

Steph: Regarding her eyes -- chick ain't got no pupils!

Cody promises to come back and help her. As Cody is ready to leave, he and Evil-Lyn finally exchange names. Evil-Lyn is using "Mary Lou" as an alias. Probably to throw He-Man off track. (Steph: Hahaha.) Cody shows that he still has his sense of humor intact as he informs the new horse that it's in for an interesting afternoon. He takes off.

We see the original three "soldiers" camping out. They see a young Indian girl bathing in a river and they chase her down. It's implied that the Lieutenant raped her. Bad move. Looks like some Indians are about to get all bow and arrow on these guys. The soldier with the long black hair is shot with an arrow as he's sitting by a tree. A whole gang of Indians chase down the soldier with the bushy mustache. The Lieutenant cowers behind a tree. He takes off running when he spots Cody washing his head in the river.

HAHAHAHAHA! What in the world was that? Cody is stretched out on the riverbank and then slings his head back out of the water real fast. His hair flies back behind his head. It's hard to explain, but it looks like a shot you'd see on a swimsuit video shoot. That has always given me a good chuckle.

The Lieutenant draws his knife and tries to attack Cody. How stupid is this guy? As he charges towards Cody he yells, "AHHHHHHHH!" giving Cody sufficient warning. Unbelievable. Call me crazy, but I think quietly sneaking up on your enemy is a better way to go.

Not Attractive After a brief struggle, Cody flips the Lieutenant over his back and that somehow kills him. I'm guessing he must've stabbed himself with his knife. The Indians ride up and see the Lieutenant dead. The lead Indian lifts his lance towards Cody as if to say, "Thanks, white dude." If this were an accurate portrayal then I'm afraid Cody would've been scalped, but thankfully that wasn't the case.

Things aren't looking good for ol' bushy mustache soldier. One of the Indians is heating his knife in a fire and then approaches the guy. The soldier screams, and well, feel free to use your imagination in regard to what they did to him.

Back at the bunkhouse the Baby Neglectin' Mother has shown up to take her baby back. I could make a REALLY LAME joke about Chili's and that stupid baby back ribs song, but don't worry, I'll refrain.

Steph: Mmm, I'm hungry. I have a Chick-Fil-A chicken biscuit on the counter that I got for free with a coupon. I'm refraining from eating it because if I eat it now I won't be hungry again until forever and I want to EAT!!

Just to clarify, Stephanie has this weird thing where if she eats a cracker or something then that'll spoil her appetite for lunch AND dinner.

The mother, whose name is Corinne and is apparently as bad an actress as she is a mother, says she got scared when her husband died, and she didn't know what to do. She then says that her parents threw her out after finding out about the baby. Why? She was married! What sense does that make? And how exactly did Corinne know Emma?

Kid actually says, "I don't mean to pry ma'am" right before asking Corinne how she plans on looking after the baby now. Kid doesn't mean to pry? Yeah right. That's a first. Corinne explains that she had her bags packed and was ready to go, but her mother heard about her husband and said she wanted to help. What? Does this make sense to anybody? Did she have the baby and THEN get married? If so, then she left that bit of information out.

Let's try to make sense of this:

  1. Corinne has a baby.
  2. Corinne's husband died.
  3. Corinne's family "finds out about the baby" and throws her out.
  4. Corinne packs her bags and is ready to go.
  5. Corinne's mother "hears about" her husband and decides she wants to help with the baby.
THIS MAKES NO SENSE! Why was Corinne living at home in the first place? Did her parents find out she had the baby, but they never knew she was married? And THEN did her mother find out that Corinne HAD been married but her husband died and so that's what made her mother soften up? The writers left something out of the story. Why didn't Corinne tell her parents she was married? She just moved back home with a baby but failed to mention that she was married but her husband died? Whatever.

A worn-out Cody finally delivers the detachment to the Under-Secretary Stanfield. I like to call him the Uber-Secretary. BWAHAHAHA, I crack me up. Stanfield thanks Cody and then rudely throws the letter in the fire. Cody's spirit drops and he asks him what he's doing. Stanfield explains that the real letter was delivered yesterday by Captain Merrick, Cody was just the ... DUHN DUHN DUHN ... DECOY! But hey, he did a good job, and the government appreciates his efforts.

Poor Cody, he looked so proud when he handed the letter over, and then you could just see his heart drop when he found out he was a decoy. I'm sorry, but I think Stanfield could've been a little nicer and not have thrown the letter in the fire. In fact, he shouldn't have let Cody know that he was a decoy. Would it have hurt to let Cody think he'd delivered the real thing? What happened to keeping employee morale high?

Tom Selleck Tom Selleck (aka Captain Merrick) enters and decides to smart off a little, "Well, well, the Pony Ex-Press. What happened boy? Horse throw ya? *laughs*"

Cody ain't taking this crap though as he punches Selleck in the stomach and then in the face! BOOYA! Talk about a Mark-Out Moment! Selleck hits the floor. Awesome. That's one of my favorite Cody moments. I'm sure Kid would've just tipped his hat to the guy and walked away.

This scene reminds me of the time I had just finished a project at work that I had been working on for three weeks. When I finally handed my documentation to my manager he said, "Thanks," and dropped it in the garbage can. I asked him what he was doing, and he replied with, "Didn't I tell you? We cancelled that project 2 1/2 weeks ago. I didn't tell you? Guess I forgot. Sorry about that. Oh well, consider it a learning experience."

He didn't think it was too funny when I let all the air out of his tires and he had to have his car towed. I was walking through the parking lot towards my truck when I saw his BMW in the process of being towed. I just looked at him and said, "Ohhh, tough break. Consider it a learning experience."

Cody punching the dude also takes me back to when I was just a little Johnny Betts. I know y'all LOVE the little Johnny Betts stories, so here's one where I was a true hero. If you've ever been bullied then this story is for you.

This story goes all the way back to the first grade. There was a kid in my class named Wendell who was about 6 inches taller than everybody else. I don't know if he had failed and was thus older than everybody else or if he was just really tall. Whatever the case, his height advantage gave him confidence, and he seemed to enjoy picking on everybody.

His tactic worked. Everybody was scared of him, and that included me. Every time he walked past me he'd punch me in the stomach. It didn't matter if I passed him in the hall or coming out of the bathroom, I always received a punch to my midsection. I tried telling my teacher, Ms. McDonald, about it, but she was a witch and didn't care. She said she didn't see him do it, so there was nothing she could do.

Ms. McDonald was MEAN. Nobody liked her. There was even a rumor floating around that the year before she had slammed some kid's head into his desk and busted his nose wide open. I believed it at the time. But now that I've had 21 years to reflect on that, I'm thinking that rumor probably didn't hold much truth. I also understand why my parents didn't believe the story either. I remember telling them, "It's true! Some kid who was in her class said he saw it!" I couldn't believe THAT didn't convince my parents. Ah, the innocence of youth.

Oh yeah, and I once got sick during lunch and threw up. When I went and told Ms. McDonald, her callous reply was, "Well I guess you better clean it up then." I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP! This ABSOLUTE WAINCH made little 6-year-old Johnny Betts clean up his own vomit. How cruel is that? This was public school, so what can you expect?

All right, back to the meat of the story. Since my teacher wasn't going to do anything about Wendell, I finally went to my parents and told them what was going on. My dad laid it all on the line and said, "I don't advocate you starting fights, but if you've told your teacher and she won't do anything about it, then the only thing you can do is hit him back. Next time he punches you, you punch him HARDER."

I didn't have to wait long to put my dad's advice into action. The moment of truth arrived the very next day. I was heading into the bathroom just as Wendell was leaving. As soon as I saw him I could feel the butterflies in my stomach. This was it. If he punched me then I had to stand up and be a man or forever cower in fear. I decided right then and there that I didn't want to be a coward.

Then it happened. Wendell punched me right in the stomach, just like he always did. But this time the response he got was MUCH different than normal. I cocked my fist back and threw it right at Wendell's face with all the strength I could muster. BAM! My fist connected solidly with Wendell's jaw, throwing him back a little.

That's when Wendell reacted like most bullies do when they're given a taste of their own medicine. "Whoa, whoa, whoa! Let's be friends! Let's be friends!" was his high-pitched reply. I couldn't believe it. WENDELL WAS A TOTAL WIMP! Either that or I was just A TOTAL STUD. Probably a little bit of both.

Wendell pretty much followed me around like a puppy the rest of the year. I obviously instilled a little fear in him and knocked his self-confidence down a notch or two. He wisely decided it was best to stay on my good side. I have no idea what happened to Wendell, I went to private school the next year where I stayed through the sixth grade. My 5 years in private school provided a plethora of adventures, plenty of which will be shared in future reviews.

Cody heads back to Evil-Lyn's place and they ride on in to Sweetwater. Cody kept his promise! Now see, Lou told her brother and sister that she would come back and rescue them from the orphanage, but noooooo, we never heard another word about her siblings. Cody told Evil-Lyn that he'd be back for her, and he made good on his promise in less than 24 hours. Now you tell me who deserved more episodes!

Emma comes out of the bunkhouse with some sandwiches and Jimmy asks her to promise not to marry Sam. He doesn't know how his heart would take it, but his stomach would die. Apparently this conversation between Jimmy and Emma was badly edited out of recent Hallmark episodes. Why? That's just ridiculous. They then see Cody and Evil-Lyn riding in. Man alive, Evil-Lyn's horse totally dwarfs Cody's horse, look at how big it is! If any of you have read Larry McMurtry's "Comanche Moon" then Evil-Lyn's horse is how I picture Inish Scull's Buffalo Horse.

Cody explains what's going on and says Evil-Lyn will be staying until the next stage comes. Teaspoon tells Cody he owes him an apology. He found out that Cody was just a ... DUHN DUHN DUHN ... DECOY (how did he find out?). Cody says nah, he had a job to do and he did it ... NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! MY TAPE JUST CUT OFF! Man. Great job my cousin did with taping the first season episodes for me. I didn't have cable at the time and had to rely on my cousin (the only person in my family who had cable at the time). "Sure is nice to know you're family will pull through when you need it most," Johnny said with more than a little hint of sarcasm.

Thankfully, a loyal fan (who shall remain nameless in case she doesn't want the publicity) just sent me a clean copy! NOW I CAN FINISH THE REVIEW! WOOOOOO!

Ahhhh, I just watched the rest of the episode. I didn't miss much BUT I LIKE TO HAVE COMPLETE EPISODES! So let's see, after Cody says that he did his job, Kid tells him that he sure missed some excitement while he was gone. Cody then replies that he guesses he'll just have to stick to books then. Hahaha, I like the way this ended. Kid's smiling real big, acting like a baby was major excitement, but we all know that Cody had all the excitement he could handle. He definitely had more than he'd get from a book. Cody slowly walks to the bunkhouse, and the credits roll.

EPILOGUE

You wanna know what I think? I like this episode very much. Cody FINALLY got an episode all to himself. Cody showed that he can be funny, cocky, cautious, all business, protective, helpful, angry, a dreamer, and a realist all in one episode. He starts off the show dreaming about being a hero. By the end of the episode he realizes that he doesn't really have to dream about it anymore.

One thing I liked is how at the end when Kid tells Cody he missed some excitement; Cody doesn't start bragging about all the adventures he just went through. He seems a bit humbled. I think that when he finally received the types of adventures he had been reading about, he realized that it wasn't as glamorous as it seemed in the books. We actually see Cody mature a little in this episode. But, as we see in future episodes, Cody hasn't matured completely. I'm thankful for that because the show just wouldn't have been the same without his goofy mischievousness.

The baby sub-plot was good for some laughs also, even if the mother's story was a little sketchy. One thing I'm curious about is why didn't Cody show any ill-effects from being shot? He got shot by one of the soldiers, grimaced a little, and then seemed fine after that. We didn't see him treating the wound or bandaging it or anything. Oh well, it doesn't take away from the enjoyment of the show. I'd definitely recommend this episode. We'll label it as a YRRT.

Mark-Out Remark: William F. Cody with, "Amazing what a shotgun can do to a body's social calendar." It'd be even funnier if I didn't relate so well to it.

Classic Scene: "The scene where Cody reads 'The Man in Black' and discusses it with Jimmy and Lou." It's a very funny scene, and I really like the interaction between Cody and Jimmy and Lou. And I get a kick out of the way Cody says, "Know what I mean?" Hahaha.

What YOU Think

Nora: First, let me just say that this episode was the perfect showcase for Stephen Baldwin. There were moments of humor, tenderness and seriousness. I couldn't imagine any of the other characters being the decoy. I mean, can you imagine if it had been Kid? He would have taken poor Bart into custody and put him on display at the circus. He would have given Mary Lou a stern lecture on remaining chaste after the death of her husband when she asked him to lie with her.

JB: And it's not like Evil-Lyn was trying to get jiggy with him. She just wanted someone close to her. It's obvious that Cody had no underlying intentions. That may be why Cody didn't tell Kid about his adventures at the end of the episode, he knew he'd be getting a lecture. I can just see Kid telling Bart, "I'm sorry Bart, but I've got my duty. You just killed a man. A bear like you don't need to be roaming free."

And the whole baby thing was cute. Exactly what you'd expect of a bunch of men trying to take care of a baby. Of course, our baby is cuter than the baby they used, but since the episode was filmed 12 years before Heather was born I'll have to forgive the casting agents that one:)

JB: But does your baby look just like Ike??? And what's the deal with YOUR TOTALLY SEXIST COMMENTS ABOUT MEN TAKING CARE OF BABIES?!?!?! Actually, you're right. The few times I had to change my brother's diapers were always major events. I always used lots of warm rags, soap, baby powder, and air freshener. And I also learned to hold my breath for long periods of time.

Beth F: Decoy!! Ya know, it was such an irony that Cody always wanted to be the "hero," the "main attraction," etc, and all his thunder gets stolen. If it was me in that sitch, I think I'd have been super ticked-off at first and then maybe really humbled by it. But either way, at least he never did lose his appetite, either for food or for life-threatening adventure. So it's William F. Co-decoy to the rescue? *mildly grinning*

JB: Ba-dum-dum psh! She's here all week, ladies and gentleman! Haha. Cody definitely was ticked off by the situation -- thus the beatin' he laid down on Merrick. I think he was probably humbled just a little bit as well because he realized that life can't always be as glamorous as it's portrayed in books.

Still, my favorite scene is where the riders watch Ike take care of the baby. He was so CUUUUTE! He looked like he'd had more than a little experience in the field of babysitting, so it made me wonder where/when he would have gotten that kind of experience, having been schooled at a mission. *shrug* Yet another question the writers never answered, yet again providing us with an ample supply of questions to answer in the form of fan-fic and personal assumption/opinion. ehh.. gotta love those writers... *slowly collapses like a toy with a dying battery*

JB: Like I said earlier, Ike and the baby had some sort of supernatural connection that only bald people who can't talk have. It's like twins who supposedly have this connection and can know when the other one is in pain and stuff.

Cathy: Well I liked this episode. I think that Cody had a chance to prove himself in more ways than one. I liked when he talked to Bart the Bear. You could say he had a pretty interesting conversation with him. In this episode he really showed that his action, bravery and skills were just as big as his mouth. I liked the part when Sam and Emma were ready to leave for the wedding. It's amazing how a shotgun can speed a man to the altar. I liked it when Cody told Sam "now don't go shooting the bouquet out of Emma's hands." ... I give it a thumbs up in comedy, action, and drama.

JB: Cathy brings up a good point. Cody did have a big mouth, but in this episode he showed that he could back it up. Cody was a jokester, but we know that he can take care of business when it needs to be taken care of. Wooooo, I just ended that sentence with a preposition! I sure hope one of my former English teachers isn't reading this; I'll be in really big trouble then!

Nesciri: There's one thing worth remembering - the horse. The giant plough horse that Cody uses in the last part of the episode. I'll be very disappointed if you forget the horse *smile*.

JB: I didn't forget the horse, that thing was a monster. It's pretty cool because you didn't typically see horses that big on the show.

Is this the episode where Cody dreams about being 'The man in black'? THAT is one of the best scenes in the show. The elegant style, the ease with which he handles the bad guys (the shot over the shoulder). Jimmy Hickok, who's that?

JB: The behind-the-shoulder shot is too funny. This is one of my all-time favorite scenes. You don't really want me to write a thesis to answer your question about Jimmy, do you?

And of course the way Cody volunteers for the job - isn't the line something like 'bravest, best looking, best darn rider you've got'? I love that sentence.

JB: That's close. Cody refers to himself as a "red rider." Does anybody know the exact origin of that term? A quick google search didn't yield any answers.

As a matter of fact, this episode clearly defines the difference between the riders. The writers finally made some sense. They realised that Cody never would have succumbed to the rather foolish cooing over a baby. A hero doesn't do that.

JB: A perfect scene would've been for Cody to get back while the baby was still there. The baby would start to cry while Cody was trying to get a nap. Cody would then coolly say, "Would someone please button that thing up?" I would've marked out.

Ann from Oregon: This is one of my favorite episodes! I can't think of anything I don't like about it. It's a great episode!I like when Cody punches the soldier, he really deserved more than that though.

JB: I totally agree. Captain Selleck, I mean Merrick, was a total punk. That was the best Mark-Out Moment of the episode. I think Cody should've given the guy a few kicks to the gut after he knocked him down. He then could've followed that up with a frog splash off Stanfield's desk. A chair shot to the cranium would've rounded things off quite nicely.

Aimee "No relation to Avril" Lavigne: Cody's little poem over the grave never fails to crack me up "Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. May this man's spirit never rust."

JB: I agree. I especially like how he pauses, smirks a little, and then says the "never rust" part.

The other thing that I always notice is how freaky psycho girl's eyes are! She scares me.

JB: Aren't her eyes just creepy? She's totally the twin sister of Lt. "No Pupils" Cassidy from "End of Innocence." When watching the episode try not to look directly into her eyes. It could be harmful. I will have to say that she was perfect for the role of Evil-Lyn.

Oh, and Cody looks HOT in the dream at the beginning of the episode.

JB: Well, I wouldn't know about such things since I watched the show for its action, humor, storylines, and character development.

Steph: Is that why you sleep with that pic of Buck under your pillow?

Now you're just making things up.

The episode that will get the Johnny Betts Treatment next is "Daddy's Girl." It's a Buck episode, so let's see what kind of a hard time I can give ol' noodle arms. In this episode Buck falls in love with Kathleen, the new banker's daughter, and proceeds to get in all sorts of trouble. The most interesting thing to point out is that Kathleen is played by Josh's ex-wife, Alice Adair. I'll get started on it when I get back from vacation. Y'all be good while I'm gone.

In the immortal words of a former Young Riders castmember, "hi, you can reach [name withheld] through this line."

Please, whatever you do, don't forget -- this is my opinion, you could be wrong.
The Sun Sets on The Rider Review
Copyright 2002 Madlib Productions, All Rights Reserved

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