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 - Hard Time
By Johnny Betts

May 31, 2002

Embarrassing. Absolutely, positively embarrassing. Do you "readers" actually read the reviews? Or do you just skim them and look at the pictures? I've got a couple of issues I want to deal with. But first, let me say that I WILL bring back the Rider Review Awards in this review. More than a couple of you have mentioned that you miss them so I will bring them back. However, I'm going to add an award or two that will be dubious in nature, AND if you want to win one of the good awards then you must EARN it. Fair enough? No? Too bad, this is MY review, and *I* make the rules.

For example, someone who responds with, "Yes, Johnny, that is COMPLETELY fair you wise and sage Rider Reviewer" is more likely to win an award than someone who responds with, "Up yours." Well, I take that back. Both would probably win an award. I like it when readers can spar with me and go toe-to-toe for a few minutes. Of course I'm gonna always win, but if you can get a few punches in then you'll have my respect. All right, on to the issues that I want to deal with.

As I was asking earlier, is it too much trouble to actually READ the review? Four people emailed me to say that Grace is NOT Susan Lucci. Sigh. Let me just share some of the comments I received:

One reader, we'll call her MistyNC, said: "I liked the review, but you got the soap opera star all wrong. She's Robin Strasser who won a Daytime Emmy for Best Actress way before Susan Lucci."

Another reader, who we'll refer to as La Cameena, said: "Grace isn't Susan Lucci, she's Dorian Lord from One life to Live. sorry, just thought you'd want to know which soap was involved."

Yet another reader, we'll just call her Misty Modelin', said: "first...that is not susan lucci!!! i can't remember her name...it's robin something, but she plays dorian lord on one life to live."

And another reader, let's call her Buhnette, REALLY thought she had me: "I must say you MUST not watch soaps at all! That was NOT Susan Lucci. The actress, Robin Strasser, does play on soaps but she used to be on 'One Life to Live' and played Dorian Lord...NOT Erika Kane. BIG GOOF UP ON YOU JB!"

Poor, deluded gals. No, I do not watch soaps, but I also DO NOT GOOF UP! I hate being right all the time, but let me remind you of a few quotes from the "Fall From Grace" review:

"...and Grace Rollins (who runs the brothel and reminds me a lot of Susan Lucci)"

Hmm, what was that I said? She REMINDS me of Susan Lucci. All right, on to another quote by yours truly:

"Grace, the olí Susan Lucci wannabe,"

Well, looky there, I called her a WANNABE. Apparently some of you merely looked at the picture with the caption that said "Boobsy McTightDress, aka Susan Lucci, puts the moves on Jimmy" and thought "A-HA! I'M GONNA NAIL JOHNNY ON THIS!" But see, you need to read the ENTIRE review so that you won't make a similar mistake in the future. Kudos go out to Rider Review reader Sarah who said, "Grace does kinda remind me of susan." Thank you, Sarah, I'm glad to see that you READ THE REVIEW! I know what you're thinking, "Wow Johnny, how are you right ALL the time?" Well, I just make sure that I have the facts on my side. Nice try, I will give everybody credit for TRYING to challenge me.

You know, that makes me wonder - where are all the Kid fans out there that used to complain that I was too hard on Kid? I actually said some nice things about him in the "Blind Love" review, but where were you then? All I heard was, "All you do is make fun of Kid! Ty Miller will star in a theatrically released movie before you ever give Jimmy a hard time like that!" Well guess what... I totally raked Jimmy's butt over the coals in the "Blind Love" review and didn't hear a peep from all the people saying it'd never happen. Plus, I don't hear as many people speaking up for Kid anymore. I figure there's probably two possibilities of why that is:

  1. You Kid fans are scared of the legend that is Johnny Betts. My keen eye of observation and sardonic wit strike fear in your very soul, and you know that you wouldn't stand a chance if you tried to go toe-to-toe with me. After all, my reputation for being a fierce debater has resulted in comments such as, "The devil's on the loose, and Johnny's on the hunt." Or...
  2. You realize that I'm right and that Jimmy is the man.
Take your pick, they're both viable possibilities. But hey, if I say something about your favorite rider that you don't agree with then send me an email and TRY to set me straight. Go off on me if you want to. I can take it, I'm not a Kid. I'll even post your remarks (and my response) in the Rider Review. That way, differing opinions can be heard and debated. If you think you can challenge me then bring it on. You might want to bring something better to the table than, "Kid is better cuz he's a QT!" or "Buck is the man cuz his hair rulz!" else I'll slaughter you. If you're too scared then just sit there and read the reviews while clutching your picture of Kid/Buck/whoever in one hand and clutching your blankie in the other.

There, the gauntlet has been thrown down. Will ANYBODY step up to the challenge? I doubt it. I'm tired of being Mr. Nice Guy. A couple of my dear fans have told me that things are tamed down a bit when I hold back my true opinions. So this review will focus less on "reporting the facts" and will focus more on telling you exactly what my opinion is. There will be no holds barred in this review.

I have another issue that I would like to bring up. The large majority of you most likely won't recall this, but I posed the following simple question:

"What do you folks think about the screenshots (thanks Gail!) w/ captions? Are they a popular feature of the review? Let me know which ones you like best."

You know how many people responded to the question? A grand total of THREE! Wow, thanks a lot, gals. It really warms the cockles of my heart to know that I can spend many hours of my free time working and slaving over the Rider Review ONLY TO HAVE THREE PEOPLE RESPOND TO MY QUESTION!!! I know it would've taken about a minute and a half to do, so please forgive me for requesting that much of your valuable time.

Please allow me to take the time to honor the people who took the time to respond to my simple little question.

Ann from Oregon said, "oh, almost forgot I like the photos in the review."

Cristy Maudlin says, "i love the screen caps. a lot of my eps were accidentally taped over or messed up, so the rider reviews let me remember some of the shows i don't have anymore. the pictures make it even better ... ALMOST as good as watching the show again."

And Rhiannon took the time to say, "OK, you wanted to know, so I am telling you, I love the pictures and captions. Especially because I see them, and expect them to be related to whatever you are talking about, and the picture is, but the caption throws in a totally new perspective. I like them. please continue to do them. please."

I send those three gals a big "thank you" for taking a couple of minutes to respond to my simple little query. When I ask a question in the future then some of you other readers might want to send them an email to get an idea of what kind of time constraints you'll have to deal with when answering my questions.

All right, now that I've gotten all that off my shoulders I can move on with the review. I'm sure I'll have more stuff to rant about throughout the review so just stay tuned. I'm Johnny, I'm on edge, and everybody's a potential target.

Hard Time. It's the name of the episode and it also describes what I'll most likely be giving Kid throughout the review. I will have to admit that Kid does a couple of redeeming things in this episode, but spooning with one of his fellow prisoners isn't one of them. What was up with THAT?? I'll explain later.

At least two of my readers, Barb and Ann from Oregon, are looking forward to this review. So I'm dedicating this review to the two of them. And anybody else who might have been looking forward to the review but didn't mention it.

We see Cody and Kid riding around in the wilderness. We see a sign for a town called Prosperity. It's 6 miles away and purports to be the "Friendliest Little Town in the Territory." I guess that pretty much means that when Cody and hair-boy go there then they'll realize that it's NOT the friendliest little town in the territory. What's up with the writers' love for using words like "Prosperity" and "Regrets" to name towns? I'm surprised the riders were stationed in Sweetwater rather than some place called "Riderville."

Anyway, Kid is marveling at the beauty of the scenery while Cody is just bored. Somebody obviously alerted Cody to the fact that this was going to be a Kid episode. Either that or he had just finished sitting through a "Kid Episode" marathon. Kid's ready to keep going so that they can make Ft. Laramie by supper, but Cody suggests that they can probably get a meal in ol' Prosperity. If Cody is so bored, does he really think the "friendliest little town in the territory" is gonna have much to offer?

Kid the Caver Not surprisingly, Kid's not so sure it's a good idea. Cody keeps on pressuring Kid though saying that they owe it to themselves after the ride they just made to St. Joe. Kid totally ABANDONS HIS PRINCIPLES and CAVES to Cody's peer pressure. Good job, Kid, way to stand your ground. Looks like you deserve what's coming to you.

Cody and Kid make it to Prosperity. It doesn't seem to be so friendly after all. BIG SHOCKER THERE! I totally called it. This is why I rule. Kid actually has a good line when he says, "The ground must be mighty interesting around here because it seems all anybody's paying any mind to." Actually Kid, I think they were just too embarrassed to look you in the eye after watching you dorkily trying to dance with Lou in "The Keepsake."

Back at the way station we see Lou coming in from a ride. She throws the pouch to "Monty." Wooo, nice attempt by the writers to give one of the stereotypical no-name riders an actual name. Lou's all dusty and starts to whine about when Cody and Kid are coming back. Buck says Saturday. Jimmy asks Lou if double duty isn't her idea of a good time. I am making NO COMMENT whatsoever. You perverts are already making up your own joke, so I'm sure you don't need my help.

Yes! Ike throws a little sign language our way:

Circles hand, hits hands together, hits chest.

Buck claims that Ike is saying that he's going to volunteer the next time Teaspoon sends special couriers to St. Joe, but the JBSLD shows that Ike's saying, "I don't mind a little double duty, know what I'm sayin'?" What a freak.

Speaking of Ike's sign language, my good friend Beth F. recently purchased a couple of Indian Sign Language books. Her goal is to determine what Ike was really signing so we can see how accurate Buck's interpretations were. It turns out that Buck had already started misleading Ike during "The Kid." What Buck taught Ike for water (which he should've already known!) was actually the sign for "wind." Unbelievable. I hate to break it to all you Buck fans, but your noodle-armed hero was a fraud. He probably wasn't even half-Kiowa. I say he was a white man with a pretty good tan. I know it's a tough pill to take, but like Bob Seger said, "Dreams die hard and we watch them erode."

Back to the whole "volunteering to ride to St. Joe" stuff, Lou says Ike will have to fight her first. Should be an easy victory for Ike. Jimmy says he'll take the winner. Should be an easy victory for Jimmy. Emma interrupts the discussion by yelling that "it's" ready. I think she's talking about the latest Rider Review.

Speaking of "ready," I'm ready to head home. It's almost 4:30 PM, so I'm gonna get my stuff together. If you're lucky then I'll continue with the review tonight. It is Friday though, so we'll see what happens. I'll just do whatever I want because I make the rules around here.

All right, it's 11:47 PM, and I'm back. Stephanie's asleep, but since I'm a night person I still have a little energy to continue with the review. I'm not in the best of moods though. My favorite basketball team - the Boston Celtics - just got knocked out of the playoffs. And the Lakers - a team that I loathe with a passion - just won their game to even their series with the Sacramento Kings at 3 games apiece. Oh well, the world continues to turn.

Where were we? Oh yeah, "it's" ready. According to Buck, a crate has arrived from Chicago. The following exchange is pretty funny:

Jimmy: Teaspoon says it's gonna make the horse absolute.
Buck: Obsolete.
Jimmy: Whatever.

Spiderweb Funny stuff. The boys then see Teaspoon hammering on a huge wheel. According to Teaspoon it's gonna change the world. You see, it can get a body from point A to point B at speeds of up to 14 mph. Teaspoon's not quite sure how it works yet, but he thinks it has something to do with the smaller wheel that came with the package.

Getting back to Cody and Kid we see that they're outside of "Whitcomb's Saloon." Cody wants to go in, but Kid is only concerned about getting some supper. He says he's not in the mood. Cody says that if he waited for that then he'd die of thirst, hahaha. Cody eventually talks Kid into BACKING DOWN FROM HIS PRINCIPLES and going into the saloon. Man, that's already twice in less than 10 minutes that Kid has caved. I thought Kid was Mr. Principle who always did what was right? Sorry, but it's obvious that the slightest gust of wind will shake him from his "moral ground." Cody's able to lure Kid in by letting him hold onto his money. It's the oldest trick the book and Kid fell for it. So sad.

Cody orders two sarsaparillas and the total cost comes to $2! Holy cow, that's as much as they'd cost today. Cody says there's over 500 miles of hard riding in those glasses and then after drinking the sarsaparilla, Kid claims it was worth every inch. It was worth riding on horseback for 500 miles just to drink an overpriced glass of sarsaparilla in about 5 seconds? I seriously doubt that.

A "lady of the night" approaches Cody and whispers in his ear. Cody takes a minute to discuss the situation with Kid. Amazingly, Kid's smart enough to see what's going on. At first he tells Cody that there isn't a chance that he's gonna give him some money to go have a fling with this floozy, but in typical fashion Kid CAVES IN (in less than 2 minutes to boot) and gives Cody some money telling him (Cody) to meet him (Kid) at the cafe in an hour. So Kid's starving to death and really wants a meal, but he just rolls over and lets Cody have his way even though they already had an agreement? I see a theme in this episode. So does Cody have any money left? Kid commented that that would clear him out. Man, it looks like Kid's gonna have to buy his own dinner as well as Cody's! Cody's playing Kid like a finely tuned violin.

A blonde woman named Tulsa sidles up to the bar and asks Kid to buy her a drink. Kid actually stands his ground and refuses to do so. Good job, Kid, you finally stood for something. Nevermind the fact that you abandoned your principles about 12 times prior to that. And one compliment for Kid is enough for the day. I'm calling it quits and will continue with the review later.

June 2, 2002

It's 11:10 PM on Sunday and I am NOT happy. The Sacramento Kings lost a heartbreaker to the Los Angeles Fakers. Shaquille No'Skill is a fraud. The guy is NOT the best basketball player in the NBA. He's big, that's it. He can't shoot a jumper outside of about 6 feet from the basket, and if he had any skill he'd be able to actually make free throws. Somebody needs to punk the guy out.

On a positive note, Stephanie and I saw John Cafferty perform at some Italian festival they had in Memphis this weekend. Just like 95% of the people at the festival, we're not Italian. For those of you who don't know, Cafferty wrote all the songs for the 1983 movie "Eddie and the Cruisers." It starred Michael Pare, a guy who had two good movies and about 40 horrible ones. It's too bad Michael didn't make a guest appearance at the concert. It's not like he's doing anything better these days besides starring in movies with Patrick Muldoon, Lorenzo Lamas, and Clint Howard.

So let's see, what principle was Kid about to cave on next? Oh yeah, the blonde woman is up to no good. We see the redneck sheriff motion to her. She tries to get Kid to go gamble, but he amazingly stands his ground and refuses to do so. However, he unwisely agrees to accompany her while she gambles. You want to know what happens next? Let me make this as concise as possible:
  1. Tramp bets on "even" and wins.
  2. Bearded dude cheats and moves spinning wheel to "odd."
  3. Kid tells dude to give her her winnings.
  4. Dude grabs tramp's arm.
  5. Kid tells him to let go.
  6. Tramp slaps dude.
  7. Dude raises his fist.
  8. Kid punches dude.
  9. DeForest Whitcomb shows up and asks what up.
  10. Dude lies.
  11. Kid says dude is lying.
  12. Redneck sheriff says it's assault and a few days in jail will do Kid some good.
  13. Kid whines as they haul him off.
  14. The moral of the story is never hit a bearded wheel spinner.
I'd like to feel sorry for Kid's plight, but he brought this upon himself. If he had actually stood by his principles then he and Cody wouldn't have wound up in Prosperity and none of this would have happened. I give him credit for punching the dude, but he shouldn't have been in this situation in the first place. Good job Kid, caving into peer pressure has landed you in jail. Hope you're happy.

Kid the Elephant Man And let me just say that DeForest Whitcomb annoys me. First of all, that's a very gay name, and second of all, what's up with his accent? At first I thought it was a FAKE British accent, but I looked up the actor who played the guy and he's from England. He talks with a lisp and I don't like it.

Welp, it's 11:46 PM, and I've gotta go to work tomorrow, so I'm heading to bed. I'll continue with the review the next time I feel like it.

June 3, 2002

All right, it's 11:49 AM, and I'm at work, but I thought I'd get a little review action in before lunch. So let's head back to prison where Kid now calls home. But first let me just tell Rhiannon HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Cody shows up for a visit. Redneck sheriff says Cody can have TWO minutes to talk to Kid. Did you catch that? TWO MINUTES. So let's see, jail is the last place Cody expected to see Kid. Kid's only supposed to be in for five days, but he wants Cody to go tell Teaspoon what happened. Then Kid says that if he's lucky then Teaspoon won't fire him. Cody then says Teaspoon won't fire him, but he (Kid) will have to do "double duty" for the next 10 years. Why? I think the riders have done worse things than being falsely imprisoned for hitting a guy to prevent him from striking a woman. I honestly don't see how Kid had any reason to be fired.

Now check this out, here comes redneck sheriff telling Cody that his time is up. What? There's no way that was 2 minutes! Let's time this and see exactly how long Cody was able to talk to Kid ... whoa, a measly 42 SECONDS! How is that fair? Man, not only do they falsely imprison you and then unfairly add time to your sentence, but they also cheat visitors out of their full two minutes! I think we can safely say that Prosperity is NOT the friendliest little town in the territory.

But let me take you back to the first episode. Remember when Kid had to go THREE minutes with Irish Johnny McClarnen to win $30? Well, I proved that the match lasted for only a MINUTE AND 45 SECONDS!!!!! I proved right then and there that Kid was a fraud. Looks like Kid got was coming to him. God doesn't like frauds, so He got His minute and 15 seconds back from Kid along with 3 extra seconds. Let's hope Kid has learned a very valuable lesson.

Kid lets Cody know that he can handle 5 days in jail, but he reminds Cody that he (Cody) still owes him (Kid) dinner. As Cody leaves, redneck sheriff begins to laugh. For some reason he's entertained by Cody and Kid. Kid then makes one of the STUPIDEST decisions of all time and brags to the sheriff about how he's friends with a U.S. Marshall and he's gonna tell on the sheriff and get him in trouble. Um, how in the world did Kid think that would do him any good? Is he so thickheaded that he wouldn't realize that that would just get him in bigger trouble? Redneck Sheriff tells Kid he doesn't like his attitude, and Kid actually has a funny line when he responds with, "Yeah, well your face don't do much for me either." I'm gonna go ahead and give Kid the first nomination for the "Mark-Out Remark" for this episode. See how nice I am?

Kid's remark may have been funny, but he just talked himself into some real trouble. Redneck calls in his deputies and says Kid is gonna do some ... DUHN DUHN DUHN ... HARD TIME! As they haul him off, Kid struggles as if it's gonna do him any good.

This reminds me of the time in my Junior year in college when I got myself in a little bit of trouble. It was in an Electrodynamics class that I was taking. I had been sitting in the back of the class cracking jokes the whole semester and the professor, who we called Santa Claus, NEVER said a single word about it. But with about 2 or 3 weeks left in class he just out-of-the-blue decides to go off on my friend and me one day. He rants and raves about how we've cracked jokes all semester long and blah blah blah. He then says, "I hope you think the final exam is as funny as you seem to find class to be."

Now if he had a problem with our attitudes then he should've confronted us AFTER CLASS at the BEGINNING of the semester. I didn't appreciate the fact that he waited this long to say something and then did it in front of the class. After all, we were pretty quiet when we made our jokes, and we didn't cause a disturbance or anything. So being one to never back down from anything I calmly replied, "Well, if it's anything like your previous exams then I'm sure I'll have a good laugh about it." The sound of students snickering and stifling their guffaws could be heard throughout the classroom. The steel-eyed glaze that Santa Claus gave me indicated that he was not too pleased with my remarks.

"You know, I don't think I like your attitude," was his comeback. Unfazed, I responded with, "Yeah, well your face don't do much for me either." That pushed him over the edge. The students couldn't suppress their laughter any longer and he was thoroughly embarrassed. You could see it in his beet-red face. He then started threatening to call security to come and escort me from the class, and he promised he'd do it if I continued to push him further. I should've called his bluff. I mean, what are the chances that a professor would actually call security just because a student was smarting off? But I accomplished my goal - embarrassing this jerk of a teacher and putting him in his place - so I just smirked and held my tongue. I think my silence unnerved him as much as my comments because he now had to live with the fear of the unknown - the fear of what I might be planning to say next.

So poor Kid is thrown into a dirty, dank cell with a dirt floor. Kid starts whining about how he doesn't belong here, this is a big mistake, he didn't do anything, etc. None of the other prisoners seem too concerned with his plight. Some black dude tells him to shut up while some little Indian (who looks to be about 12 years old) is petting a rat. The Indian shows Kid his rat, and Kid meanly says, "That's nice." Hahaha, I'm sure it was unintentional, but it was funny the way Kid said it.

Poor Kid This whole rat storyline is just strange. Right now it's pretty big. Look at the long tail! It's gotta be a rat rather than a mouse. Just keep reading because some weird things happen with the rat. I won't reveal them all now, that way I'll have you on the edge of your seat waiting to see what I reveal next. I just know it's not a very continuous storyline.

One of the prisoners tells Kid he better get some sleep because "morning comes fast around here." Um, I'm pretty sure morning would come just as fast as it does anywhere else. Kid huddles up in the corner. I was expecting him to start sucking his thumb.

It's 10:35 PM, and I'm continuing with the review now. You'll have to forgive me for not saying goodbye earlier. Something came up at work and, wait, I DON'T OWE ANYBODY AN EXPLANATION! Now back to the story...

Later that night Kid sees the black dude and the Indian digging a hole. All right, here's something else that doesn't make any sense. We see the prisoners moving some wooden planks that are covering the hole. If you'll look closely you'll realize that THERE ARE NO OTHER WOODEN PLANKS ANYWHERE ON THE GROUND!!!!! It's a DIRT FLOOR! This is obviously a plot hole, but just for the sake of argument let's say they somehow found some planks somewhere. Don't ask me where because I have no clue. But wouldn't the guards be suspicious that some wooden planks just one day appeared on a particular spot on the ground? Man, this just makes no sense.

Oh, and the Indian is digging out the dirt with his hands and handing it to the black dude, who we later find out is named Hinton. Um, where exactly are they storing all this extra dirt? I guess they must've been spreading it around across the floor. SOMETHING is getting spread around in this episode.

Back at the bunkhouse Buck ponders what Cody and Kid are up to. Jimmy speculates that they're probably sitting in front of a fire, sipping coffee, eating bacon, and laughing at them. Jimmy's speculation was wrong, but if he had been right then you just know that Kid would've totally been wearing some footie pajamas. They'd probably have horses or something on them also.

Back at the jail Kid receives a kick to the stomach as his wake up call. Holy cow, I just had a MAJOR flashback to when my mom would wake me up for school. The prisoners are off to do some hard labor. Some people might even go so far as to say ... DUHN DUHN DUHN ... HARD TIME! Kid mentions to Hinton that he thought he saw him digging a hole last night. Hinton denies it. Was that the opportune time for Kid to approach a delicate matter like that? I'm thinking no.

We see that the prisoners are breaking up rocks and such at ol' Prosperity mines. Man, it looks like there's between 30 to 40 prisoners out there and ALL of them are wielding sledgehammers. There's about 3 or 4 guys watching over them. I see one guy carrying a rifle while I see another sitting on a horse with no weapon drawn. Is it just me, or doesn't it seem like the prisoners could've just started wailing on the guards with their sledgehammers and overtaken them pretty easily? All you have to do is pummel the guy with the shotgun, take the shotgun, and then with 30 to 40 sledgehammer-carrying prisoners you are totally in charge. Why was this so hard to figure out? Seems like that would've been a much better option than wasting your life away in that dump.

Some prisoner named Richard shows Kid how to use the sledgehammer. Kid grew up in the South (and most likely on a farm) and he doesn't know how to use a sledgehammer? I'm positive he would've used an ax at some point in his life, and the principle isn't that much different.

Oh well. Richard (who it turns out is married to Tulsa) explains to Kid that his dad once owned these mines. Whitcomb had his father killed when he (Richard's father) tried to resist a foreclosure. When Richard went to the sheriff to discuss the matter he was arrested. Supposedly nothing can be done because Whitcomb has bought protection from powerful people. Richard forces the title of the episode down our throat one more time as he says, "Welcome to hard time, Kid." DUHN DUHN DUHN!

Back in Sweetwater, all the riders are trying to figure out how to ride the bike. We have the following results:
  1. Buck falls immediately.
  2. Ike does a pretty good job until the bike flies out from underneath him. The hardcore rider takes another big bump.
  3. Lou can't even reach the pedals and crashes into the barn.
  4. Jimmy steps up to the plate and does the BEST job of anybody. He ends up getting thrown into a pigpen, but he stays on the longest.
Bike Riding I like the fact that a mud-soaked Jimmy laughs and says, "This ain't so hard Teaspoon, is it? Let's try it again." I'll make the bicycle scene the first "classic scene" nominee. We'll call it "the scene where the riders ride the bike and Jimmy stays on the longest."

Let's check in with Kid and see how he's doing. He's drinking a ladle full of water. Doesn't look like he's doing that well. He's smiling though and announces that his friends will come looking for him soon. Richard tells him that men on the tail end of their sentences have a way of getting in deeper. What should it matter to Kid if he knows the riders are on their way to help him?

As much as I don't want to do it we have to check in on Whitcomb. Gross, he's in the bathtub. I don't need this. Tulsa knocks on the door and Whitcomb gaily says, "It's OH-PEN!" I cannot stand this guy! He then gets her to scrub his back and starts to moan and groan. This is just disgusting.

How's Kid doing? It seems he has decided to help dig the escape hole. Little Hawk's head pokes up above ground and we see that the escape hole is now complete. Richard's not going though because he fears for Tulsa's life. Speaking of Tulsa, let's see how she's doing with Whitcomb.

The little twerp annoyingly tells her that he can expedite Richard's release, "If you're willing to ... do ... something ... for ... me." Man, this guy is so gay. I can't take too much more of him. I CANNOT STAND HIM! SOMEONE PLEASE DRAW THEIR GUNS ON HIM NOW!

Meanwhile, the prison break is in full effect. Hinton is the first to go. Ohhh, he's captured! Kid's next - WHAM! They hit him on the back of the shoulders. They haul him off to the smokehouse. Little Hawk is the next to get captured. Please pay careful attention to what happens next. Little Hawk is captured but he THROWS HIS RAT ON THE GROUND! Keep this in mind because this is going to play a part in another plot hole near the end of the episode.

Kid's Real Nightmares Begin NOW Kid is thrown into the smokehouse. Um, he was KNOCKED OUT COLD about 30 seconds ago and now he's wide awake? I don't get it, what's going on here? Kid sees Hinton and soon realizes that he's dead. Here comes the redneck sheriff. Uh-oh, things aren't looking too hot for the Kid-meister. Redneck announces that they've just caught a killer in the act. Kid actually starts to lunge towards them. Um, what exactly was he expecting that to accomplish? Bright idea, Kid, why don't you try to attack a couple of armed men. Kid didn't have much education, did he? Goodness. Redneck quickly draws his gun and puts an end to Kid's aggressiveness. And with that, I'm gonna put an end to the review for tonight. It's 11:29 PM, and I'm not in the mood to stay up all night writing this review. We'll continue tomorrow. Class dismissed.

June 4, 2002

I'm keeping up a torrid pace writing this review, aren't I? I'm totally outdoing myself. It's 3:25 PM as I write. The end of the work day is approaching. I figured I'd get some writing in before I head to my softball game. Can the Maroon team return to its winning ways? If not, it won't be through any fault of mine.

Poor Kid, he's now in jail for life. That means years and years of rock-busting, sounds fun. Should've stood by your principles, Chester, then this wouldn't be happening. Ah well, c'est la vie. A new guy joins the prisoners. His name is Roy Davitt, and he was accused of stealing tobacco. He denies it and then proceeds to get beaten up. As the guard is beating on ol' Roy, a plethora of prisoners holding sledgehammers are standing idly by and not doing anything. These guys are morons. As one of the guards is handing out a ration of water, he empties Kid's on the ground. Kid makes a mean face, but it doesn't appear to intimidate the guard.

Cody finally makes it back to Sweetwater and tells everybody that Kid's in jail. Jimmy smirks, looks to his side, and says, "What'd he do, steal candy?" Hahaha, I've gotta make that the second "Mark-Out Remark" nominee. Too funny. Cody says what happened and for some reason Buck says that sure sounds like the Kid. Why? Kid usually tries to avoid trouble. It sounds more like something Jimmy would've done, it sounds like the exact opposite of what Kid would've done.

Teaspoon asks Cody where he was while all this was going on. He stammers a bit, looks at Emma, stammers some more, looks at Emma again, and finally says he was "preoccupied." It was a funny delivery. Cody then goes on to say that the town was NOT friendly, everybody seemed afraid of something. He's not so sure Kid isn't in trouble. Teaspoon says he knows someone who worked that part of the country. On my copy of the episode, the scene immediately cuts off and goes back to the jail. Seemed like a pretty abrupt cut, so I don't know if this Family Channel version is edited or not. I suppose we're to assume they're going to go talk to the dude who has worked that part of the country. See how smart I am? We weren't given the exact details of what Teaspoon and the riders were going to do, but we were given enough information for me to deduce what would happen next. It's finely-tuned attention to detail like this that you won't find anywhere else, folks.

It's 4:39 PM, and I've got a softball game to play. I'm out of here.

June 5, 2002

It's 9:33 PM, and yes, it's been a little while since I've worked on the review. We lost our softball game and I've been in mourning. Well, I was in mourning until Stephanie and I watched Spy TV last night. It's now hosted by Ali Landry. Wooooo, is she ever HOT! I'm all happy now and can continue with the review. Oh, but Stephanie is going out of town this weekend, so I'm gonna be all alone and forced to fend for myself until late Monday. Sad, so sad. Thankfully, I taped Spy TV. Some of you might remember Ali Landry from the celebrity "Fear Factor" episode with Stephen Baldwin. How cool was Ali? She was cool, calm, collected, and tough. Unlike that soap opera chick that nearly had a heart-attack when she was covered with the snakes and roaches.

Now where were we? Ah yes, we're back at the dirt jail. Roy asks what's wrong with the Indian. Kid claims that he "wouldn't talk" and so the guards beat him up. Barb mentioned this to me, and I agree, WHAT WAS HE SUPPOSED TO TALK ABOUT? Are they talking about the escape? As Barb said, the guards already knew about the escape, so what was there to talk about? I don't get it. Maybe the Indian was a mute and couldn't talk. He never said a word in this episode. Is he supposed to be the love child of Buck and Ike or something?

We see Kid lying down against the wall in the fetal position. Richard sidles up to Kid and starts SPOONING with him!!!! What in the WORLD is that all about? Goodness gracious. I'm sure Whitcomb has something to do with it. Richard then shakes Kid twice while saying, "Kid!" Kid wakes up and Richard inexplicably asks him if he's asleep. Um, dude, you had to shake him TWICE before he opened his eyes and groggily responded. I'd say there's a good chance he was asleep.

What's up with Kid's eye? It's all swollen. When he tried to escape he was hit in the SHOULDERS, not the face. I've never heard of an injury to the shoulders spreading to the face. Since then we haven't seen him get hit, so why is his face all bruised up? See what I mean? This plot has more holes than Manuel Noriega's face.

Richard starts blabbing on and on about Hinton's death and how he warned him that the escape was too dangerous. Kid asks him what he's talking about. It's obvious what he's talking about, I'm curious as to what the point is. Just SHUT UP AND GO TO SLEEP, RICHARD, YOU SICK SPOONER OF FELLOW PRISONERS!

Sam's Narrow Escape Back in Sweetwater dude is telling Sam and the riders that recently one of his men was arrested in Prosperity for supposedly stealing tobacco. IT MUST BE ROY DAVITT! ALL THE STORIES ARE TYING TOGETHER! Dude said the guy hadn't worked for him long, so even though Roy denied stealing the tobacco, he (dude) didn't know for sure what to think. He was sentenced to 5 days. That's it, that's the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back, the riders are going to rescue Kid!

Back at the Prosperity mines the prisoners start singing:

Working in the coal mine
Going down down down
Working in the coal mine
Whoop about to slip down

The writers decided this was out of place, and they weren't interested in making this "Cop Rock" so this scene was cut. However, we do get to see Roy Davitt complain about not getting any water. He gets a good beating for his trouble. Kid and about 30 to 40 sledgehammer-wielding prisoners stand idly by and watch. Sigh. Little Hawk has a leather pouch that he's somehow been storing water in, and he offers the water to Roy. Where in the world did he get the extra water? Oh I just don't care anymore. I'm getting a headache trying to make sense of all this confusing mess.

Ol' Tulsa shows up and starts telling Richard, "I did it for you." Whitcomb then shows up and lets Richard know that he's prepared for his imminent release. He then informs Richard that, "You WERE a very fortunate fellow." Kid tries to console Richard, but Richard the Spooner is no longer looking for Kid's affection. Whoa, Kid's looking creepy here. His eye is bruised and his face is black and blue. Looks kind of like a werewolf or something. Was this a foreshadowing of his appearance as a werewolf on the X-files? Doubt it.

We see the riders camping out. Lou wonders aloud how Kid is doing. Cody tries to comfort her by saying he should be fine. Cody and Buck then comment that if it was Jimmy then he probably would've been hung by now. Not true, and I'll tell you exactly WHY it's not true at the end of the review.

Sam shows up at the camp. He went to Ft. Laramie to see if he could find out anything. It turns out that there have been some previous complaints about ol' Prosperity. Apparently many drifters and settlers have disappeared. In fact, the government sent a man to investigate things and he hasn't returned yet. Lou sports a worried look on her face. Cody tries to reassure her by saying that Kid can take care of himself. Should Lou be so obvious about her worry for Kid? I mean, Sam supposedly doesn't know that Lou's a girl, so she shouldn't be acting so attached to Kid. Sam might think something a little funny is going on.

Desperate Kid Back in the dirt prison we see that Richard has hanged himself. This is SO STUPID! He was ABOUT TO BE RELEASED! If he had a death wish then why didn't he wait until he was released from prison and then go out in a blaze of glory trying to take DeForest Lispcomb with him???? Why not try to get revenge on lisp boy? That would've been a much better alternative than hanging himself! So totally stupid. So Lispcomb has his father killed, falsely imprisons him for over a year, and then steals his wife, and instead of seeking revenge he kills himself? This is so annoying. Kid sees him and acts all sad and hugs his legs. What's up with THAT?

Welp, it's now 10:25 PM. I guess I'll finish watching the basketball game and help Stephanie with her packing. I'll be back tomorrow with the exciting conclusion to ... DUHN DUHN DUHN ... HARD TIME!

June 6, 2002

It's 9:23 PM and I'm FINALLY getting back to this little review that no one is going to give me feedback on. Work was crazy today and I didn't get to work on the review there at all. Then Stephanie's flight was delayed and all sorts of crazy things were going on there. But Stephanie arrived in Houston safely, so all is well. I'm just sitting here watching the MTV Movie Awards. In case any of you were wondering let me just go ahead and say that Charlize Theron is HOT! Too bad she wasn't on The Young Riders, I'd have a lot more fun finishing up this review.

Charlize! We see poor Kid reading a suicide note that Richard left. Turns out the guards knew about the escape plan all along. Hinton wouldn't talk so Richard BETRAYED his fellow prisoners and revealed the plans. He's sorry now though. Kid wadded up the paper all meanly. As Kid was wadding up the paper he should've said out loud, "You can stuff your sorries in a sack!" I still say it was STUPID that Richard hanged himself. Makes no sense whatsoever.

Kelly Osbourne (Ozzie Osbourne's daughter) just performed on the Movie awards. Good to see that nepotism is alive and well in the music business. Please note that Johnny Betts WORKED his well-toned buttocks off to become the #1 Rider Reviewer in the world. My father wasn't a famous Rider Reviewer that paved the way for me. Nope, I did it all on my own.

Check out the exciting action sequences that happen next. Put on your seatbelt though because they move like a freight train:

  • The riders are ... RIDING!
  • The prisoners are ... BUSTING ROCKS! Wooo, Kid is busting rocks extry hard!
  • The riders are ... RIDING AGAIN!
Whew. Does anybody else need a breather? Let's take a short break...

Ahhh, all right, I'm refreshed now. Well, I was until I saw that the next scene involved the redneck sheriff and Tulsa. Do you really think anything of importance happened in this scene? If you do, then I hate to disappoint you. Redneck just rubbed his chin a bunch when Tulsa asked where Richard was, and then Tulsa just faked sadness when she realized he was dead. She then acted like she regretted what she had done. Sorry Tulsa, but regrets don't bring back the dead. Y'all can quote me on that.

Hey look, it's Paul Walker on the MTV Movie Awards. He's the Keanu Reeves of the new millennium. Vin Diesel could snap that pretty-boy in half.

The riders arrive in Prosperity. The bartender runs into Lispcomb's room and tells him to look outside. I've gotta say that it's pretty cool when Sam and the riders ride into town looking like they're ready to start some trouble. The riders should've quit the Pony Express and started up a Protection Service. The Young Riders Protection Agency (YRPA - pronounced yurpa) - that would've ruled. They ran around fighting bad guys and saving towns a lot more than they delivered mail. And it probably would've been much more lucrative than the Pony Express.

The riders head to the sheriff's office to talk to redneck boy (who introduces himself as Cal Linley, but we'll just keep on referring to him as the redneck sheriff). Sam asks about Kid, and redneck claims that he was released at 7:00 that morning. Sam takes a look at the "books" and says they appear to be in order. Before the riders leave, Sam asks about the guy who was arrested stealing tobacco. Redneck says he doesn't recall that and it must be a mistake. Sam goes along with him and says it must've been some other town.

Once outside Lou starts whining about how there's something wrong. She then claims that if he was really released then they would've crossed paths. Why? They're covering a wide area of land, so what are the chances that Kid would've ridden right past the riders?? I don't deny that there was no reason to be suspicious, but I doubt it's just a proven fact that they would've crossed paths. At least Buck didn't sense something was wrong or something.

Buck then says, "He's still here." Sigh. Welp, looks like Buck used his extra sensory Indian skills and sensed that Kid wasn't gone. Why else would they have had Buck (of all people) make the comment? Yes folks, you just witnessed the return of 6th Sense Buck.

The riders see Whitcomb's saloon and decide to go pay a visit. While the riders are asking around about whatever, Cody sidles up to the bar. The bartender denies ever seeing him. Tulsa starts to talk to him though and says his friends in a lot of trouble.

Inconspicuous Buck We then move on to a silly little scene where the prisoners are WALKING! And then the silliness ensues when all of a sudden we hear CAW CAW! CAW CAW! Kid somehow automatically knows it's Buck because he starts looking around and then notices Buck up in a tree. Yeah, that's a real good place to hide. Well, Buck was able to hide his noodle-thin arms behind the branches, so I guess it WAS a good place to hide. I guess Kid remembers Buck's Caw Caw signal from Black Ulysses.

The riders immediately show up and make the guards drop their guns. The prisoners' chains are unlocked and they all take off running. Um, is that the wisest decision in the world? I mean, there's a good chance that SOME of those guys were in prison for a legitimate reason, so I think I would've double-checked before I just let 30 to 40 prisoners take off running all willy nilly. What kind of law operation is Sam running here?

One of the guards tries to ride off, but Little Hawk throws his chain around him and pulls him off his horse. Dude lands on his SIDE yet somehow breaks his neck and dies. Whatever.

The riders are back in town and Kid is walking with a purpose! "Whitcomb!" he cries. He should've called him "Lispcomb." Sam yells out, "Sheriff!" I guess that was all we needed for a good gunfight. Here's the damage:

  1. Sam shoots dude.
  2. Sam shoots another dude, he flies off the roof.
  3. Jimmy shoots dude.
  4. Kid shoots dude at door.
  5. Sam shoots another dude on the roof.
  6. Cody shoots a dude on the roof.
  7. The sheriff tries to ride off and Cody gets him with his rifle.
The final score: The Riders - 7 The Bad Guys - 0, the riders just can't be beat! I'm telling you, The YRPA would've RULED! The show should've had a disclaimer at the end of each episode that said something like, "No riders were killed within the context of this episode." Isn't it amazing how the riders always have the BEST hiding places during gunfights while the bad guys are just dancing around on top of roofs with a bull's-eye painted on their chests? It never ceases to amaze me.

Oh, and don't worry about the redneck sheriff (who has also appeared in movies such as "Cliffhanger," "Clear and Present Danger," "Wyatt Earp," and "Breakdown") he will come back to life in a later YR episode. I think he plays the sheriff of Blue Creek or something like that.

Kid's heading to find Lispcomb to TC of some B. Lispcomb is hurriedly emptying his safe. He sure has taken his time. What was he doing since the riders arrived in town? He had more than enough time to empty his safe and take off. Too late though. Tulsa shows up and shoots him. Kid arrives about 2 seconds too late. Tough break, Kid, maybe next time.

Ali Landry All righty, it's time to wrap everything up in a nice, neat little package. Ol' Roy Davitt is named the temporary sheriff, and is gonna stay until a permanent sheriff is elected. Sam seems to think Roy is perfect for the job. Why? What has he ever done to show that he would be a good sheriff? Sam's known the guy for 10 minutes and he somehow knows that Roy would make a perfect sheriff? In a scene that was later deleted, Emma shows up out of nowhere (ala Buck style) and tells Sam, "You can sell that someplace else 'cause I ain't buying it." Sam then looked in the camera and responded with a Tim Allen-esque "Huh?"

Oh man. What is THIS dog mess? We see Little Hawk standing there HOLDING A MOUSE! First of all, this mouse is SMALLER than the RAT he had in the prison. Second of all, LITTLE HAWK LET THE MOUSE GO WHEN HE WAS CAUGHT TRYING TO ESCAPE FROM THE PRISON!!! What in the world is going on here? "Hey Johnny, maybe it's a NEW mouse and not supposed to be the original!" I thought about that, dear reader, but then Kid said, "That's a tough little guy, ain't he?" Now why would Kid say that if it wasn't supposed to be the same mouse? Kid's words indicate that the mouse somehow survived all this turmoil. Unbelievable. If this mouse business makes sense to anybody then please fill me in. Little Hawk just smiles like a goofball. He probably knows it's a different mouse and is trying not to laugh at Kid for thinking it's the same one.

In a scene that was later cut, Ike shows up out of nowhere and BREAKS HIS SILENCE and says, "There's only room for ONE mute on this show, and his name ain't Little Hawk." Ike then punked out Little Hawk and left him motionless on the ground. Little Hawk's mouse started to scurry away. Ike stepped on it. Thankfully, this is the last we see of Little Hawk.

Tulsa says goodbye to everybody, and Jimmy comments on how this really is a friendly little town. Because a prostitute told everybody goodbye? Before they ride off Kid tells Cody, "Cody, do me a favor. The next time you get bored let's go look at rocks or something."

Wooooooo, there's a sure cure for boredom! I'm sorry ladies, but all you Kid fans would be sorely disappointed if you had the chance to go on a date with hair-boy. "Hey Kid, what are we doing on our date??" "I thought we'd go look at some rocks or something!" Kid's idea of an exciting time is to go look at rocks. It figures.

I remember I liked to look at rocks in about SIXTH GRADE. I kind of grew out of it, but I guess Kid never did. My good friend Mikey Cruiser and I would go to the creek and look for cool rocks there. We'd always head home with a bunch of smooth little pebbles that were perfect for throwing. Once we took things a step too far when we saw Mrs. Goiter Neck asleep on her porch.

Mikey Cruiser: Hey Johnny, wanna go throw rocks at Goiter Neck and see if we can bust that thing open?

I gotta admit, while the idea grossed me out I was curious as to what was inside that fist-sized goiter. And whenever Mikey or I suggested an idea, the other couldn't back down from it. It only took about 3 or 4 throws before Goiter Neck woke up and chased us off with a broom. We never found out what was in that thing. What stinks is that I still had to cut her grass after this event. You better believe I didn't touch the lemonade she'd offer me. I'm pretty sure I once saw actual goiter flakes floating at the top. Totally disgusting.

The riders take off, and the episode ends. And with that I'm taking off as well. It's 10:43 PM, and I think I'll watch Elimidate or something. But don't worry, I will be back soon with some final thoughts and awards AND I'll be introducing a new feature to the review. So stay tuned, things are just heating up.

June 7, 2002

It's 8:56 PM, and even though Stephanie is out of town I am STILL alive! And since I am alive and have nothing to do at the moment I suppose I shall continue with this review. Try to contain your excitement.

So the show is over, and you probably want to know what I think, right? Well, I don't hate the episode, but it's certainly not one of the best, and it is most definitely not to be used as a YRRT (Young Riders Recruiting Tool). A lot of things about this episode just don't make sense. Plot holes abound. Whitcomb, I mean Lispcomb, annoys me to know end. It's not that he makes a good heel (bad guy), he just ANNOYS me. He's more of a bothersome gnat than any sort of intimidating presence. Little Hawk is a punk. That stupid mouse/rat annoys me, especially how he let it go and then it just returned. This episode was saved by the "classic scene" and "Mark-Out Remark" winners. So without further adieu, let's get to the winners.

Mark-Out Remark: Jimmy Hickok with, "What'd he do, steal candy?" Kid came close with, "Yeah, well your face don't do much for me either." But in the end, Jimmy's line made me laugh, and it was such a fine little jab at Kid's reputation of being a goody two-shoes.

Classic Scene: "The scene where the riders ride the bike and Jimmy stays on the longest." It's a funny scene, and it provided good comic relief in an otherwise serious episode.

You asked for it, so now you're going to get it, the return of the Rider Review Reader Awards!

The Newcomer Award goes to... Barb Wood! She was ready for me to jump all over "Hard Time" and I hope I met her expectations.

And the Rider Review Mark of the However Long it Takes Me to Write the Review is... Beth F! To be fair I might try to hand out this award to people who haven't previously won it. So if you haven't been the Rider Review Mark before then send me a note letting me know how much you marked out to this review!

Now I'd like to take a moment to recognize those people who responded to certain aspects of the review that I was hoping people would comment on. In the "Fall From Grace" review there were two main things I mentioned that I wanted responses to. Here is what they are and some of the comments from the readers. Reader comments are in red, and my comments are in black.

  1. The picture of my grandfather. Here's what a couple of you had to say:

    Cristy Maudlin: the pic of your grandfather was so cool! he just looks like he would have a lot of great stories to tell. that pic looks like he should be in a james dean movie or something. the very essence of cool.

    I couldn't agree more. My grandfather died when I was 17 and I hadn't taken an interest in writing yet. If he were alive today then I'd be busy writing a book on his life. I'll include more of his cool stories in future reviews.

    Rhiannon: The big bicep is hereditary huh? looks good...

    Thanks, I do my best to keep in good shape. My grandfather was a boxer and always exercised and stayed in good shape. I played baseball all my life and wrestled in high school, so good habits die hard. Plus, you gotta stay in shape if you're gonna walk around in public wearing Josh Brolin muscle shirts.

  2. My annoyance with Southerners always being portrayed as uneducated hicks. Apparently this hit home with a few of you:

    Rhiannon: AMEN BROTHA!!!!! ... I swear anytime they put a north Carolinian on TV they find the most outrageous po-funk illiterate person available and script them with idiotic things to say, just to keep the illusion alive. But my favorite movie for worst fake southern accent goes to Varsity Blues... "I dont wunt yer life!" I cringed through the whole thing.

    Oh man. I never saw "Varsity Blues," but I've seen the previews with Dawson Geek using the above line, and boy does he need to be punked out.

    TaMara: Thank you for that remark about people "talking" like Southerners in movies. I have lived in AR all my life, and I do not talk like that.

    Thanks also go out to TaMara for being the first to inform me that Josh's new girlfriend is none other than the lovely Diane Lane. She was the lovely Lorena from "Lonesome Dove."

Josh's New Girlfriend Now let me introduce a new segment of the Rider Review. In this segment I give you, the passionate reader, a chance to voice your opinion regarding the episode. I will then respond to what you say. Just to keep things simple your opinion will be in red and my comments will be in black. I might agree with your opinion, or I might let you know why you're wrong. You never know what's gonna happen when you tell me...

What YOU Think

Welp, I sent out an email asking for YOUR comments regarding "Hard Time" and I said that my goal was to receive 5 responses. Let me tell you, you folks are really pushing it because I received exactly 5 responses. That's an 8.7% response rate. Sigh. However, Barb Wood had previously sent me her opinion of "Hard Time," but I've already referenced some of her opinions in this review so I'll be working with 5 opinions. It's not much, but this is a new feature so I'm sure y'all will get more involved in the future. Hundreds of people are reading THIS review, so I'm asking all of you now to send me your comments for "Lady For a Night." I'd like more than 5 responses, but I won't get my hopes up. Here are your opinions.

Beth F:

It's been literal years since I've seen the episode, but if it's the one where Kid gets stuck working for the chain gang, then I remember the tiniest fragment of the bad guy. Man, what a schmuck! I never DID like that actor and I've never seen him play a good guy. I guess he's just good at what he does, cuz I hated him. LoL.

BOOYA! I'm assuming that Beth is referring to "Whitcomb" when she says "the bad guy." I think I've made it pretty clear that *I* can't stand him. He's the kind of character that you just want to go away. I've always preferred tough bad guys like Longley and Calder. I can do without weasly little characters like Whitcomb. Also interesting is Beth's comment that "it's been literal years" since she last watched this episode. You know what the most likely reason for that is, don't you? IT'S A KID EPISODE!

Cristy Maudlin:

anywho, i haven't watched 'hard time' in a while, it's one of the eps i don't have, so i really can't contribute to the review, but i wanted to let you know i think you're on to something good. i do remember that i thought the ep would have been more suited to jimmy than kid but it was fun to see goody two shoes get in trouble, even if it was unjustly, lol.

Haha, Cristy's dead-on. I agree that this would've been a better episode with Jimmy as the lead, but that's pretty much the case with most of the episodes. Remember earlier in the review when Cody and Buck said that if Jimmy was in Kid's situation he would've been dead by now? This isn't a true statement because Jimmy would've never been in this situation in the first place. After punking out the wheel spinner, when the redneck sheriff and DeForest Lispcomb showed up to try to arrest Jimmy, he would've drawn his guns and dropped them faster than an Elizabeth Taylor husband. Oh, and big surprise, we have another reader who hasn't watched this Kid episode in a while. I see a trend.

Sunny Jones:

I haven't seen this episode in a long time, so I can't remember all of the characters' names. But, here are some of my general reactions.

Bwahaha, "haven't seen this episode in a long time," bwahahaha. "Quit laughing Johnny, I'm sure the next time you have a 'Jimmy episode' coming up that plenty of people will say they haven't watched it in a long time! What will you say THEN???" I'm sure I'll have a valid excuse as to why they haven't watched it in a long time - intimidated by Jimmy's coolness, scared they'll realize they like Jimmy more than Kid, etc.

Just my 1 1/2 cents. I like "Hard Time" because Rex Harrison's brother is in it. (He plays the 'bad guy'...the brother, not Rex Harrison). Rex Harrison portrayed Henry Higgins in the movie version of "My Fair Lady" and Rex and his brother have more than a passing resemblance. So, it sets my mind to thinking how good this episode would be if it were set to music and Cody did the can can with the prostitute and Lou broke down into some kind of heart-broken lament around the campfire. Singing and dancing could really help this episode.

Interesting. I wasn't aware of the relationship between "My Fair Lady" dude and lisp boy. See what interesting information can turn up thanks to this new Rider Review feature??? As far as turning this episode into a musical - it probably couldn't have hurt the episode. The episode was discontinuous enough as it is, so why not complicate the matters even more? As I pointed out earlier, the writers were already headed in that direction when the prisoners were singing "Working in a Coal Mine" in that deleted scene. Alas, twas not meant to be. I think it would've been best to bill "Hard Time" as a Twilight Zone meets The Young Riders episode. That way you could say, "Oh, OK, I guess it WASN'T supposed to make any sense."

Also, I think the wife of Rex Harrison's brother, (and the guy who hangs himself in the cell) you know, the lady who takes Kid to the gambling wheel. Well, she is the most realistic looking prostitute portrayed on the show. Other than Rachel.

Tulsa Oooooooooooooh, Sunny with the low blow on Rachel! Poor Rachel, if she has any fans then I'm sure THIS woke 'em up. I agree about Tulsa (the prostitute that Sunny is referring to). Granted, she's not as bad as the knifed-up prostitute from Clint Eastwood's "Unforgiven," but she's older, and at least she doesn't look like she just stepped off the set of "Melrose Place."

Also, Sam is in this show, and he's sympathetic to Lou's worry for Kid. I'm sure he knows about Lou! Sam is the man!

Sam is indeed cool, but I don't know if he knows about Lou yet. Although I honestly don't know how he couldn't. Stephanie was a bit sad because Sam was clean-shaven in this episode. She's hoping for a quick return of "5 O'clock Shadow Sam."

Rhi:

How lucky could Kid be, he gets thrown into the cruelest prison without actual torture, and within a week the people who have been stuck there for ages finally finish their escape hole. WITHIN A WEEK KID GETS A CHANCE TO ESCAPE. I dont think he was there long enough to appreciate how nice that little hole was.

Haha, excellent point! It is pretty amazing that the escape tunnel wasn't finished until right after Kid arrived. But I still want to know how the guards didn't notice these wooden planks that were only where the hole was and nowhere else. But no torture? There was obviously an invisible guard in there who'd beat on Kid and cause those bruises to appear on his face. Come on Rhi, think logically.

And more on that little hole, when they are popping out as they escape, all I can think of is that game at the fair, chucky cheeses, putt-putt, wherever you play overpriced games for worthless tickets, where the rodents pop out of the hole and you try to bash them in the head.

that's my ten cents.


I'll credit you 15 cents worth. The guards would've been pretty good at that game because they gave Kid a good bash on the back of the shoulders. So good, in fact, that the bruises spread from his shoulders to his face! Now THAT is skill!

Sameena:

Okay, I'll give it a shot. I didn't like the ep, mostly because it was filled with people I didn't know and I didn't like and if I did like them, it was guaranteed that they would end up dead.

Oh now Sameena, don't be such a pessimist. All the people who ended up dead were BAD GUYS! That's how it usually is in Young Riders land. Well, Hinton and Richard ended up dead, but who cares about them? I can understand how it was filled with people you didn't like - Lispcomb, the redneck sheriff, morons who commit suicide rather than trying to get revenge, Kid, etc. But never fear, the famous "Jimmy goes to the dentist" scene is coming up in the "Lady For a Night" episode, so there's something to look forward to!

Thank goodness for that scene because I think I usually fall asleep during the Lou storyline. This is the episode with Robin Colcord from "Cheers" as the main guest star. I don't remember a whole lot about it, but since it's a Lou episode I'm pretty sure I'll have plenty of stuff to make fun of.

That's it for this review. Hopefully this was a good intro to the "What YOU Think" feature that will really cause the ball to get rolling. If not, then I and the 4 or 5 people who like the feature will continue to have our little fun while the rest of you will sit back and reap the benefits of OUR hard work. Bunch of lazy ingrates.

In the immortal words of Batman, "This time, the Joker gave the party. Next time we'll hand out the door prizes."

This is just my opinion, chances are you're wrong.
The Sun Sets on The Rider Review
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