Volume 1, Issue 1
[ Home | Intro | Articles and Editorials | Email Pranks | The Rider Review | What's Wrong With People? ]

The Kid
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
Daddy's Girl
Matched Pair
Man Behind the Badge
Then There Was One
Gathering Clouds Part 1
Gathering Clouds Part 2



Born to Hang

The Rider Review - Fall From Grace
By Johnny Betts

Fall From Grace. We start off with Teaspoon talking to an old friend of his – Lucious “Prairie Dog” Corchran, or however you spell his name. Why couldn’t his name have been something simple like “John Smith”? Now I have to actually put about 5 seconds worth of thinking into spelling his name. Sigh.

Anyway, Lucious is joking with Teaspoon about how much weight he (Teaspoon) has put on. Teaspoon says he’s just grown more “substantial.” I don’t think Lucious should be talking about anybody else’s weight. Dude looks like a bloated Marlon Brando. Well, maybe he’s not THAT big, but who is?

Lucious mentions Travis, Crockett, and Bowie. Teaspoon reveals how he pulled a knife on Bowie once and cut a necessity flap in his pants. This is where the writers show us how cool Teaspoon is by revealing that he hung out with all these famous Alamo dudes back in the day. It would’ve been cool if they’d had some flashback episodes showing Teaspoon with Bowie, et al. But nooooooo, the writers think it’s good enough to just do some name-dropping and give us the ILLUSION that Teaspoon has this really cool history. I WANT SUBSTANTIAL PROOF!

Ol’ Prairie Dog (more like Prairie Hog) is in town due to a military secret. He claims he can’t tell Teaspoon what’s going on. Prairie Horn Dog sees some “ladies of the night” prancing around and decides to go satisfy one of man’s two appetites – and he wasn’t after food. Pervert. No wonder he’s such good friends with Teaspoon. “The Keepsake” showed us what a dirty old man Teaspoon is. Birds of a feather.

Teaspoon tells Horn Dog to stay out of trouble but concedes that he might as well ask a horse to fly. I’ve used that line before, but it’s a pretty cheesy line if you don’t know what it’s referencing, and unfortunately most people don’t know what I’m referencing so they end up giving me dirty looks. I’m not a big fan of the structure of that last sentence, but I’m too lazy to do anything about it. My spell check doesn’t see anything wrong with it so that’s fine with me.

The Walrus Man Fast forward to a few minutes in the future. Some dude with long hair and a mustache is in Prairie Horn Dog’s hotel room and is rifling through his belongings. The dude looks kind of like a walrus. Some prostitute (Sparrow) tells dude to hurry up. Prairie Horn Dog comes back from a trip to the bathroom and starts beating on walrus guy. He demands to know what’s going on, but before long-hair can utter his first fake Southern-accented words, he stabs Lucious in the side.

Sparrow starts screaming, and Grace Rollins (who runs the brothel and reminds me a lot of Susan Lucci) comes in and female pimp slaps Sparrow. She sends Sparrow to get the dim-witted Bo. Fake Southern Dude rifles through Prairie Horn Dog’s shirt and finds a piece of paper. Then in a fake Southern accent, the likes of which you would only hear in a movie set in Memphis, he asks Grace, “Is this whut yo’r lookin’ fo?” It’s some sort of map of a river.

Why can’t anyone ever give an accurate representation of a Southerner? I think “The Firm” is the worst example of incorrect stereotyping. After watching that movie you’d think all Southerners were overall-clad, “wife beater t-shirt”-wearin’, uneducated hicks with accents so thick you’d need a translator to understand what was being said. It gets annoying.

Good ol’ Bo shows up outside of the door and shows us all how stupid he is by asking, “You want I should come in?” I’ve seen this big dude before. He’s played in a lot of mafia movies. I think he usually plays a dim-witted mafia guy. Poor Bo, always being typecast. He also played in Viva Rock Vegas with Stephen. I haven’t seen the movie, but I’m sure he played some dim-witted prehistoric guy.

Grace tells Bo to carry Horn Dog out. Bo freaks out when he realizes the Dog is dead. Grace tells Bo and Fake Southern Dude to make it look like the guy’s merely drunk when they carry him out. Is it just me, or wouldn’t that seem a little suspicious? One day these two VERY noticeable guys (a BIG dumb guy and a guy with long hair and a mustache that resembles a walrus) carry a limp body out of the saloon, and the next day he’s found dead and no one suspects anything?

The riders are in town admiring a saddle in the window. The next scene is funny.

Teaspoon: You boys gotta learn to quit that.
Cody: Quit what?
Teaspoon: Hankerin’ after things, it’ll be the ruination of you.
Kid: What’re you talkin’ about, Teaspoon?
Cody: Ask and ye shall hear.
Jimmy: And hear and hear and hear.
Teaspoon: I'm talking about things. Most people never get enough no matter how much they got. Case in point - you boys got everything you could possibly need and here you are gawkin' and slatherin' over more. I'm tellin' you, it's like a disease. Pretty soon your life ain't about livin' and people, it's about things. And after a while your things ain't enough for ya, and sure as I'm standin' here, you'll hunger after somebody else's things. And THAT is what causes war.
Cody: We was just admiring the saddle, Teaspoon.
Teaspoon: That is a pretty nice-lookin’ saddle, isn’t it?

Teaspoon a Pervert? Good stuff. I especially like how Teaspoon made the transition from his lecture to admiring the saddle himself. I’ll make this the first “Classic Scene” nominee. We’ll call it “the scene where the riders admire a saddle and Teaspoon gives a lecture about gawkin’ and slatherin’ over possessions.” But you know, the riders could afford a saddle like that if Teaspoon had given them the $10,000 that he gave to Amanda O’Connell!

The saddle discussion is interrupted by the screams of ol’ Sparrow. It appears that one of her customers is roughing her up.

Jimmy: ‘Scuse me.

As Jimmy takes off, Emma says “James!” in one of those “don’t get involved in this mess” tones. What’s Emma’s problem? Jimmy was just going to stop a guy from roughing up a girl. Was he supposed to sit there and watch? And please note that it was JIMMY who went to defend the, ahem, “lady’s” honor. I didn’t see Kid moving Heaven and earth to help the poor gal out.

Jimmy proceeds to beat the dude up. Some of you Jimmy detractors may speak up and say, “See, Jimmy’s a hothead who’s looking for fights!” But please note that Jimmy didn’t throw the first punch. Like the honorable fighter that he is, he let the other guy charge after him and then just simply proceeded to take care of business from that point. He was completely level-headed. Teaspoon nods approvingly.

This reminds me of something my grandfather once did. My grandfather led one of the most interesting lives I’ve ever heard about. I used to love to sit around and listen to him tell stories of his younger days. He spent time in 48 different states before he finally married and settled down. That’s what you call LIVING. He was born in 1911 and lived in an era where it was second nature to jump from boxcar to boxcar and just experience what different areas of the country had to offer. He helped build Boston Garden, he was a dishwasher in an Al Capone-owned Chicago restaurant, he was a boxer who actually fought in Madison Square Garden, etc., etc. I could go on forever. But his boxing abilities gave him the confidence and fearlessness that we see in Jimmy. In fact, I heard a rumor that Jimmy’s character was modeled after my grandfather. My grandfather actually watched The Young Riders! He was in his late-70s/early-80s when the show was on, but he loved it. I think Jimmy reminded him a little of himself when he was young. He always loved it when Jimmy would go head-to-head with a bad guy and get the upper hand.

My Grandfather At any rate, my grandfather saw a guy slapping a woman around in a bar once so he went in and knocked the guy out cold. Somebody came up to him and said, “You shouldn’t have done that, that was his wife!” My grandfather calmly replied, “I don’t care who it is, he shouldn’t have been slapping a woman.” My grandfather ruled.

Grace, the ol’ Susan Lucci wannabe, comes out and asks what the trouble is. Sparrow throws herself all over Jimmy and explains how he took care of everything. Grace is impressed and offers Jimmy a job. Jimmy points out that he’s already got a job, but Grace lets him know the offer stands in case he changes his mind. Hmm, think this will come into play again? Nooooo, can’t be! Jimmy heads out.

Lou: I think she likes you.
Cody: Course she does, and for the right price she’ll like you even more.

Jimmy asks if he was just supposed to let the guy beat on her, and Teaspoon says sometimes it comes with the territory. Um, so if it’s happening in public then you should sit idly by and say, “Them’s the breaks”?? Jimmy says it doesn’t seem right. He then refers to the chick as a lady, but Emma adds “of the night.” Yeah, I think calling the girl a “lady” is a bit much. And call me crazy, but I doubt most “ladies of the night” in that era looked like cast members of an Aaron Spelling primetime drama. Jimmy reminds Emma that she always says, “folks is folks.” She does? I’ve never heard her say that.

Emma: Never mind what I say. Besides, we don’t pay you enough to fancy a lady like that.
Jimmy: Well I’ve been saving up.

Sam’s at Emma’s waiting for Teaspoon. Sam informs Teaspoon that Lucious was found stabbed to death yesterday. Teaspoon is speechless. While Teaspoon is mourning over his friend’s death, Stephanie is sitting beside me making comments like, “Mmm mmm mmm, Sam is lookin’ gooooood again!” Man. Stephanie, I am saddened by your actions. Teaspoon just found out that an old friend of his is dead and all you can do is hoot and holler about... whoa, is that Charlize Theron on that magazine cover?? CHA-CHING! Woooo, yeah baby! Oh, sorry, where was I? Oh yes, Stephanie was, oh, never mind.

Teaspoon wants to know if Lucious’ death has anything to do with the map-making they were doing on the Pawnee River. Sam says that’s very likely. Sam then goes on to explain something about Indians, buried treasure and artillery, Grace possibly getting the map, and the artillery being worth a fortune. Unfortunately, Teaspoon can’t be of any help because Lucious didn’t tell him jack. Sam wants the riders to keep an eye out for anything unusual. Sam rides off, and Teaspoon says goodbye to Prairie Horn Dog. I failed to shed a tear.

Back at Ye Olde Ho House Grace is moving some tracing paper with marks on it along a map. That tracing paper reminds me of the Philly Cheese Steak sub I had at Subway the other day. Goodness, they put about 5 pieces of meat on my sandwich, and the meat was so thin I could practically see through it. Very disappointing. Anyway, Grace claims she is “getting somewhere” as she somehow matches the tracing paper with the map. Fake Southern Dude comes in and they talk about the loot being buried at the base of the Pawnee River. Grace sends her henchman, Otis and Hardesty, to go check things out.

Back in town Jimmy finishes loading some stuff on the wagon and informs Teaspoon that he’ll be back in a minute. As he starts to head off to the Ho House, Teaspoon stops him and tells him not to go in there – the last time his friend went in there he came out dead. Jimmy says he was probably too old to handle it. What proceeds is an excellent scene between Jimmy and Teaspoon.

Teaspoon: Let’s go!
Jimmy: I’ll catch up with you in a minute.
Teaspoon: (grabs arm) Didn’t you hear what I said? I don’t want you going in there.
Jimmy: I heard you, but I’m on my own time.
Teaspoon: When you signed on with the Express you agreed not to discredit the company.
Jimmy: I ain’t gonna discredit the company. I’m just gonna say hello to a friend.
Teaspoon: Hobnobbin’ with trash like that is a discredit to the company. (Puts arm around Jimmy) Son, I’m just trying to help you.
Jimmy: (Pushes Teaspoon’s arm away) Then give me some room.
Teaspoon: All right.

Huh?  Wha? The riders watch in disbelief. Grace saw everything from her balcony. This is a very good scene. The chemistry between Jimmy and Teaspoon is very good. I always laugh when Jimmy shoves Teaspoon’s arm away. Jimmy does a good job of acting like a son who doesn’t want his dad’s help or advice. They just do a very good job of creating a thick air of tension. I’m gonna have to make this the next “Classic Scene” nominee. We’ll call it “The Scene Where Teaspoon Tells Jimmy Not to Go to the Ho House and Jimmy Pushes Teaspoon’s Arm Away Causing Much Tension.” Ah, short and sweet.

We’re now in the Wildhorse Saloon where cleavage shots are in abundance. Grace approaches Jimmy. He’s just visiting, but she says the job offer still stands. Jimmy says he might be needing it. Grace refers to Jimmy as Wild Bill. Ooooooh, she’s done some research! She knows Jimmy has a reputation as a hothead. Jimmy says that the Wildhorse Saloon doesn’t exactly look like Sunday School to him. Grace admits to having a wild side herself. She explains how she went absolutely crazy and partied all night when she finally won a Daytime Emmy Award for the role of Erica Kane in "All My Children" in 1999. This was after 19 consecutive losses, so her wild side was due to come out. Grace obviously wants her some Jimmy.

Welp, we have yet ANOTHER excellent scene coming up! The riders are eating supper, and Teaspoon is telling the story about the Dutch boy that had to stop up the dam with his finger. Jimmy enters the room and the tension builds.

Jimmy: Where’s the meat?

Everybody stares at him with wide eyes. They act like he just admitted to liking "Moesha" or something.

Teaspoon: Where you been, Jimmy?
Jimmy: I been around.
Kid: You all right?
Jimmy: Never better.

I love the way Jimmy looks up and says this with a bit of a smirk. THIS is the cocky Jimmy that we all know and love. I’ve already forgotten about the Bizarro Jimmy we watched in “Blind Love.”

Teaspoon: You know; I didn’t appreciate your attitude back in town.
Jimmy: Like I said before, long as I do my work, what I do in my spare time and how I feel about it ain’t none of your business.


Buck: Jimmy!
Cody: What’s gotten into you?
Jimmy: (shrugs) Nothin’, just wakin’ up is all.

Hahaha, for some reason I like the shrug, very funny.

Kid: You got no call talkin’ to Teaspoon like that.
Jimmy: Oh golly, that’s what I’d expect coming from you, Kid.

Poor Kid HAHAHAHAHA! Oh man, that’s HILARIOUS! When Jimmy made his comment he made a fist and did an arm movement you’d expect someone to make when saying “Oh golly.” This is one of the funniest lines in the history of the Young Riders. Jimmy’s statement totally showed that he saw Kid as a goody-goody. “Oh golly,” HAHAHAHAHA! We’ll make Jimmy’s line the first “Mark-Out Remark” of the episode.

I’ve gotta point out that Jimmy and Kid do have good chemistry. Their chemistry is different than the chemistry between Jimmy and Cody. Jimmy and Cody provide good laughs whereas Jimmy and Kid provide good tension.

Kid: What’s that supposed to mean?
Jimmy: Never mind.
Kid: No really, I want to know.
Jimmy: All right. It ain’t just you, it’s all of ya. Look at yourselves. Risking your lives every day, busting your butts. For what? The pay? (laughs) You know as well as I do what that amounts to. He treats us like children and wants us to thank him for it (Johnny: hahaha). Well I’m sorry cause I ain’t gonna do it. And if any of you had any backbone you wouldn’t either.

BOOYA! I’m sorry, but Jimmy is LAYING THE SMACK DOWN!

Kid: I don’t know what’s come over you, but I don’t believe you mean that.
Jimmy: What’s the matter Kid, the truth hurt?

Hahaha, Jimmy says this with the perfect amount of arrogance.

Lou: Jimmy, look around you, we’re your family, doesn’t that mean anything to you?
Jimmy: Ha! That’s a laugh. All I see is a bunch of sheep.

Hahahaha, I’m sorry, but this just rules. I love this line. Yeah, yeah, he’s going off on the riders and all, BUT IT’S FUNNY! Everybody has gone off on his siblings before, so that’s how I’m viewing this.

Cody: (slams hand on table and stands up) That’s enough!
Jimmy: What’s the matter, Cody? Wanna come after me? (stands up) Is that what you wanna do? Come on.
Cody: Oh yeah?
Jimmy: I’m waitin’.

Cody lunges, but Teaspoon and Buck hold him back.

Teaspoon: Settle down! Settle down!
Jimmy: (waves off Cody) Ah, forget it.
Teaspoon: I don’t know what’s the matter with you, but I don’t like it. Maybe all this Wild Bill stuff has gone to your head, I don’t know. But it’s pretty clear – you don’t belong here no more.
Jimmy: What are you saying, Teaspoon?
Teaspoon: I’m saying you’re fired, now get out.

Jimmy smirks.

Teaspoon: I said get out!

Jimmy leaves.

Emma: Jimmy!
Teaspoon: Emma! If he’s gonna come back he’s gonna be the way he was or not at all.


This scene just flat out ROCKS! Jimmy is awesome. When I first saw this episode I was totally fooled by what Jimmy was saying. I thought firing him was a bit extreme though. Wouldn’t it have been more appropriate to send him to the sweathouse to think about what he’s said? Excellent job of acting by Mr. Brolin. He expressed the perfect amount of arrogance throughout this entire scene. All his smirks and facial expressions were dead-on. Would somebody like to explain why Matt Damon and Ben Affleck are bigger stars than Josh? I don’t get it. This is indeed a “Classic Scene” nominee and will simply be known as “The Scene Where Jimmy LAYS THE SMACK DOWN!”

And I know some of you sissies out there may have watched this scene and thought, “Wah, Jimmy is being so mean!” But come on, Jimmy said what we all have wanted to say to our boss, our siblings, our parents, etc. at one time or another. In fact, I think one of the reasons why I love this scene so much is because of how close to home it hits me.

True story. I was only 14 at the time this happened, so my parents expected me to come inside about 6:00 to eat supper and then get all my homework done. One day I didn’t get home from my friend’s house until about 7:00. Everybody was sitting at the dinner table, and my parents didn’t look too happy.

Daddy Betts: Where you been, Johnny?
Johnny: I been around.
Dad: I thought we told you to be home by 6:00 tonight.
Johnny: You know, as long as I do my chores, then what I do in my spare time and how I feel about it ain’t none of your business.
Mother Betts: Johnny! What’s gotten into you?
Johnny: (shrugs) Nothin’, just wakin’ up is all.
Audra (my sister who was 10 at the time): You have no right to talk to daddy like that!
Jimmy: Oh golly, that’s what I’d expect coming from you, Audra.
Audra: What’s that supposed to mean?
Johnny: Look at yourself. Studying hard every day, busting your butt to do your chores. And for what? The allowance? You know as well as I do what that amounts to – a big ol’ sum of one dollar a week. I can’t buy a stick of gum on an allowance like that. He treats us like children and wants us to thank him for it. Well I’m sorry cause I’m not gonna do it anymore. And if you had any backbone you wouldn’t either.
Audra: Johnny, look around you, this is your family, doesn’t that mean anything to you?
Jimmy: Ha! That’s a laugh. All I see is a bunch of sheep.

At this point I was just mainly mouthing off. I had already assured myself of a pretty hefty punishment, but at least I hadn’t crossed the line… yet. That’s when I took it one step too far:

Dad: (slammed his hand on the table and stood up) That’s enough!
Jimmy: What’s the matter, dad? Wanna come after me? (I stood up) Is that what you wanna do? Come on. I’m waitin’.

Welp, what you just witnessed, folks, is a textbook example of little Johnny Betts crossing the line. When I looked in my dad’s eyes I knew it was time to sprint to my room and put on a double layer of pants. Like I’ve said before, reenacting scenes from the Young Riders has landed me in trouble more than just a couple of times.

We now head to the Wildhorse Saloon where we see Jimmy wearing his new fancy duds and watching a poker game involving Fake Southern Dude. Jimmy catches some guy cheating and tells him that there’s only one King of Spades to a deck. Dude jumps up to attack Jimmy but it ain’t happenin’! Jimmy uses his SUPER PUNCH accessory and knocks the guy out with one cut to the jaw. Jimmy tells Grace that it’s not the cheating he minds so much; the guy just wasn’t any good at it. Grace informs Jimmy that they’re gonna get along just fine. Hmm, did Grace (aka Susan Lucci) somehow cheat to finally win that Daytime Emmy??? Is that what she’s implying??? THE TRUTH FINALLY COMES OUT! Kid should’ve donned his Fro Locks Holmes character and exposed this.

Lou shows up. Jimmy makes a funny comment about her being out past her bedtime. Lou tells Jimmy that he stepped on a lot of toes, but she wants him to come back. Lou seems to think that Teaspoon will let Jimmy come back if they all talk to him.

Jimmy: No, I’m done talkin’.
Lou: You don’t belong here.
Jimmy: Lou, I don’t belong anywhere.

Jimmy then mentions how his job with Grace is as good as any, plus it has its perks. Huh? He gets free food? He can play cards for free? What’s he talking about?? I don’t get it.

Instant Justice Lou: Jimmy, please come back.
Jimmy: Come back to what? A hard bunk, eating dust for wages, never a thank you? Well thank YOU, but this is more my style.

That’s actually a pretty accurate statement. It probably is more Jimmy’s style than the Pony Express. Grace comes over and tells Lou to drink, play cards, or get out. Lou has to sport an attitude and respond with, “When I’m finished.” Bo picks Lou up by the throat and begins to drag her out. Jimmy draws his gun and tells Bo to put Lou down, “I’ll kill him, Grace.” He’d kill Bo simply for not putting Lou down? Yes, this is the WILD WEST and all, but I doubt Jimmy could get away with that.

Judge: Why’d you kill the big dimwit?
Jimmy: He wouldn’t put my friend down.
Judge: Oh, all right, you’re free to go.

I don’t see that happening. Bo gets scared though and puts Lou down. He then starts to play up the whole dumb act saying stuff like, “Tell him not to point that gun no more at me. I want you should make him stop. Be scared no more I want.” Who is this guy, Yoda?

Jimmy tells Grace she better keep Bo away from him. Grace sends Jimmy an ominous warning, “It’s me you have to worry about.” DUHN DUHN DUHN!

Jimmy and Sparrow go for a stroll. Jimmy bought her some sort of parasol because he’s just a big ol’ gentleman. Further showing that he truly cares about PEOPLE, Jimmy wants to know Sparrow’s real name. It’s Amy. Or is it AIMEE???? Haha, check it out, Jimmy’s got a vanity cigar! He puts it in his mouth, but he never lights it. I guess he figured it just made him look so much cooler. Sparrow warns Jimmy about Grace and tells him to get away from her.

Otis and Hardesty ride up on some old codger on the frontier. The guy has an army canteen but stupidly refuses to answer any questions. You know what that means – Grace’s henchmen kill the guy.

The Strangle Cody and Lou are in town on the wagon when Cody spots Jimmy. He confronts Jimmy about his behavior and wants to know if he or the others did anything to cause a grudge. Jimmy just laughs and tells Cody to go home. Lou yells “Cody!” and then does some totally funny-looking head nod to signal for Cody to come back to the wagon. It just looked funny the way she jerked her head back forcefully. Well, it looked stupid, but that’s what made it so funny.

We see about a two-second shot of the dead old dude and Otis and Hardesty discussing how they must be close to the buried treasure. We’re then quickly taken to a scene with Grace telling Sparrow to get back to work. Sparrow stops at the door and says, “Jimmy, remember what I said.” Um, how stupid was that? Goodness. Yeah, that’s not suspicious or anything! Grace apparently isn’t all that smart though because she doesn’t get suspicious or ask Jimmy what that means. She just tells Jimmy that she has big plans for him if he plays his cards right.

At dinner Cody tells Teaspoon that it seems like he’s talking out of both sides of his mouth in regard to Jimmy. The riders are turning on Teaspoon! It’s Mutiny on the Pony Express! Ike slaps the table and then graces us with this bit of sign:

Points, moves his hand over his ear, moves his hand over his face, moves his hand over his ear again, points, does a “crotch-chop” motion with his hands, and thrusts his hand towards Teaspoon.

Buck: Ike says since you’re always talking about things such as forgiveness... (looks at Ike)

Ike wiggles his hand near his ear, makes chopping movement with both hands, makes karate chop with right hand, and then points.

Buck: ...how come you can’t bring yourself to do it?

(Johnny pulls out the ever-reliable Johnny Betts Sign Language Dictionary) Well, it’s a foregone conclusion that Buck’s interpretation of Ike’s sign is nowhere near accurate. Thankfully we have the trusty ol’ JBSLD to help us out. And folks, you won’t believe what Ike is saying:

“You hypocrite! Do you not listen to what you tell us? You’re a two-faced hypocrite who can’t hear his own words! I shall cut off your [manhood] and thrust my hand into your chest to retrieve your heart.”

Whew. Does Ike have some anger issues that he needs to deal with? That was the first part of the translation. The second part is no less frightening:

“Your ears will ring with my maniacal laughter as I repeatedly karate chop you upon your face.”

It’s pretty scary to think that everybody was just walking around, believing Buck’s false interpretations of Ike’s sign language, thinking Ike was sweet and innocent, oblivious to the anger and rage Ike was harboring inside. Admit it, you’ll never view Ike the same way again. From now on you’ll be just a little more scared of him.

Teaspoon claims that this Jimmy situation isn’t as easy as it seems. He then goes on to say how he was afraid some of the riders might fall by the wayside and this seems to be what has happened with Jimmy. Teaspoon says he sees a little of himself in Jimmy. Wouldn’t he be more sympathetic then? Cody then claims that even when Teaspoon’s wrong, he’s right. Not really.

Boobsy McTightDress We see Grace trampin’ herself up for a little “meeting” with Jimmy. Goodness, who does she think she is? Boobsy McTightDress? Jimmy enters the room and she starts to put the moves on him. She starts to kiss Jimmy, but Bo knocks on the door and interrupts.

Sam’s outside his office talking to Colonel Brown. This serves the purpose of letting us know who Colonel Brown is so that we can move on to the next scene.

Fake Southern Dude (this guy’s a David Crosby wannabe now that I think about it) tells Grace about Colonel Brown’s arrival. Grace sends Jimmy and her henchmen to the Pony Express station to get info from Teaspoon. Jimmy says he doesn’t owe him anything, so he’ll go. He says Teaspoon did save his life once, so he hopes he doesn’t have to get hurt. Grace claims that all she wants is info. Make that info AND Jimmy.

On the way to the station Jimmy’s horse picks up a stone. Otis and Hardesty laugh about Teaspoon’s future saying they hope Jimmy isn’t too close to him. They let Jimmy know that after Bo’s done with Teaspoon then that’ll be all she wrote for the ol’ codger. Jimmy doesn’t like what’s going down so he tells Otis and Hardesty to get off their horses because they “ain’t going nowhere.” He warns them not to do anything stupid, but they ignore him and try to draw. Jimmy’s too quick and takes ‘em both out. He then shows a GREAT DEAL OF COURAGE and shoots himself in the shoulder to make it look like they were attacked. Now THAT is tough!

What was Jimmy’s original plan? Was he actually going to confront Teaspoon and try to get more information? “Um, Johnny, you do realize that the writers probably didn’t think that far ahead, don’t you?” Whatever.

Jimmy heads back to Grace and tells her that her henchmen almost got him killed. He said Hardesty forced a fight with the riders and a melee ensued. Grace and Fake Southern Dude exchange suspicious glances. I’m glad they were a little suspicious of Jimmy because most YR bad guys would’ve completely fallen for that line and not suspected a thing.

Cody rides into town at night to look for Jimmy. He climbs the roof of the Wildhorse Saloon and sneaks in through a window. He starts snooping around a couple of doors whispering “Jimmy!” hoping for a response. He hears someone coming so he jumps in a room to hide. He overhears Grace and Fake Southern Dude talking. All of a sudden a voice behind him says, “Neeeeeext” as we see a young tramp messing with her stockings. Isn’t it amazing how she was in the room the whole time but waited until Grace and Fake Southern Dude were done talking before she said “Next”? IMPECCABLE TIMING!

Caught in the Act The following exchange is funny:

Cody: Uhhh, thank you ma’am, but I’ve got a previous engagement. By any chance, could you tell me what room Jimmy Hickok is in?
Tramp: Last one on the right.
Cody: Thank you.
Tramp: There’s no accountin’ for taste.


Cody knocks on Jimmy’s door and starts to slowly open the door. Jimmy draws his gun and then grabs Cody and throws him on the bed. Get your minds out of the gutter! I love it when Cody matter-of-factly tells Jimmy, “I know you’re wild, and I respect that and all, but you don't belong here.” But he tells Jimmy to grab his stuff and go. Hahaha, yeah, like Jimmy would just say, “OK, you’re right, Cody. I have now seen the error of my ways. Let’s get out of here!”

Jimmy: And what if I don’t want to?
Cody: Then we’ll have to slug it out I guess.

Hahaha, Cody cracks me up. He cracked Jimmy up too because Jimmy snickered a little and then begins to explain that he wasn’t really fired, it was all a plan. Cody mentioned that he overheard a conversation about some sort of arsenal. He said he heard something about wagons and how they were gonna empty everything before sun up. Nope, that’s not true. Neither Grace nor Fake Southern Dude mentioned anything about sun up! Looks like the writers got a little lazy. Jimmy says, “Let’s go,” which inspires Cody to roll his eyes and ask where they’re going. You could tell by the look on Cody’s face that he was concerned with what Jimmy was about to get him into.

Once they reach the hall they hear a moaning sound. Let's see, a moaning sound in a "cat house" known as the Wildhorse Saloon... somebody must be dying! That's all it can mean! What's that you say? Man! Again, would you readers PLEASE GET YOUR MINDS OUT OF THE GUTTER AND STOP MAKING UP YOUR OWN JOKES! Sheesh, I’m trying to write a respectable review here. Jimmy and Cody run into a room and see that Colonel Brown has been beaten up. Cody comments that it looks like a grizzly got a hold of him. Jimmy says it’s the next worse thing. Whoa, you mean Colonel Brown had to go three minutes with Johnny Betts??? Nah, he’d look a lot worse than that.

What we see next is quite possibly the worst acting in the history of The Young Riders. Colonel Brown is apparently about to die, but he’s able to choke out this final message:

Tell...Marshal...Pawnee...got stop her...base...of...Medicine Rock.

Man, this was just sad. He’s all rolling his eyes and choking out the words in a manner befitting a death scene in a high school play. But it gets better! Colonel Brown then proceeds to have the FAKEST death scene I’ve ever seen. Just as he manages to choke out the last words of his message (it’s amazing that he was able to keep from dying before he finished his message – WHAT WILLPOWER!!!!) his head just drifts to the side and bounces up and down. Looked like somebody dribbling a basketball up and down the court. Cody and Jimmy exchange befuddled looks. You could tell by the looks on their faces that they couldn’t believe they had just witnessed such a fake death scene. I certainly know that *I* couldn’t believe I had just witnessed such a fake death scene. You’ll have to forgive me for not shedding a tear over Colonel Brown’s death, but it was totally laughable.

I mean, come on, how clichéd is it for someone to choke out one final clue before dying? Unfortunately, this isn’t the last time it happens on The Young Riders.

Frankenstein A door opens, and as Cody and Jimmy spin around they see big, bad Bo standing in the doorway. Cody correctly guesses that this is the grizzly that just manhandled Colonel Brown.

Jimmy and Cody draw their guns. Bo holds his hands out and waddles towards them like he’s Frankenstein or something. Cody starts to get a little concerned, “Kind of bothers me when a pointed gun don’t bother a man.” Bo starts to reach for the rug. For some reason Cody asks him what he’s looking for under there. I think it’s a clue, to give to you, Cody! Anybody else think there’s no way Cody would’ve asked something that stupid?

Bo pulls the rug out from Jimmy and Cody and sends them flying. Bo’s supposed to be amazingly stupid, but he’s smart enough to think to pull the carpet out from under them while they’re not able to figure out what’s going on in time to jump off the rug?

An all-out brouhaha ensues. Bo with the headbutt on Jimmy! Jimmy gets thrown across the room! CODY BREAKS SOME GLASS OVER BO’S HEAD BUT IT HAS NO EFFECT! Punch to the stomach! Punch to the stomach! It’s funny because on Cody’s third or fourth punch we hear JIMMY’S voice say, “All right, that’s it!” and then Cody punches again. Looks like someone messed up in the dubbing department. All right, back to the fight...

Bo hits Cody on the head – BEAR HUG! BEAR HUG! Cody makes a funny face as the air is obviously being squeezed out of him! Where’s Jimmy??? Here comes Jimmy – BAM! HE BREAKS THE CHAIR OVER BO’S BACK! Oh no, it has no effect! Hahaha, when Jimmy realizes this he simply says, “Oh.”

Bo hits Jimmy and knocks him clear across the room! CODY JUMPS ON BO’S BACK! Bo starts spinning around and around. Jimmy’s up! OH! Cody’s legs were just slung into Jimmy knocking him down again! Bo throws Cody over his back and onto the ground, but Jimmy’s up! WHAM! He nails Bo in the back of the head and Bo goes down. Grace shows up EXACTLY AT THE END OF THE FIGHT and holds a gun on Jimmy. She regrets that it had to end this way and cocks her gun. GUNSHOT! What happened? IT’S SPARROW! SPARROW HAS SAVED THE DAY AND KILLED GRACE! Jimmy tells Cody to go get the “sheriff.” Huh? They immediately go and get Sam, so wouldn’t Jimmy had just said, “Go get Sam”? And since when do they refer to Sam as the sheriff? He’s the MARSHAL! As good as this episode is, the writers sure are getting lazy in the last few minutes.

Bear Hug Oh well, before Jimmy leaves he tells Sparrow, I mean Amy (or Aimee), that she’s a good woman and kisses her. Rumor has it that Jimmy and Cody’s fight against Bo was the first-ever hardcore fight. Looks like the WWF (now the WWE) owes the Young Riders some royalties.

Cody and Jimmy show up at Sam’s office. Sam has a very lame comment: “You boys look like you painted yourselves with honey and went into a bear’s den.” Ba dum dum chi! Would Sam have really said something like that? I don’t think so. Especially not in that situation. It wasn’t a very effective joke – too awkward.

Jimmy tells Sam about Jonas Simpkins heading to the Pawnee River to dig up the army arsenal. Jonas Simpkins? Who? Ohhh, Fake Southern Dude. Sam, Jimmy, and Cody head off to round up the riders to save the day. All in a day’s work. Cody still wants to know what’s going on. Please note that it’s COMPLETELY DARK while they’re at Sam’s office.

Now we head over to ol’ Medicine Rock and IT’S COMPLETELY BRIGHT! Is this a goof? How did it go from pitch black to broad daylight? Plus, I thought they were supposed to clear out the arsenal BEFORE sun up! It sure looks like it’s well past sun up now. Plus, if you’re going to argue that they waited until the next morning to head to Pawnee River then why would Sam be in such a hurry to go get the rest of the riders that night? See what I mean about the writers getting lazy? They used up all their creativity in giving Jimmy three really good scenes, and now at the end of the episode they’re just getting sloppy.

We see the bad guys with cannons and all sorts of rifles and such. Looks like they’re retrieving the arsenal. The riders show up and take their positions.

Sam asks Cody if he can hit the powder keg in front of the lead wagon with that “Hawkett” of his, and in a Mark-Out Remark Cody coolly replies, “On my worst day.” It reminds me of the time when someone asked me if I could write a review about a Kid episode that Jimmy didn’t appear in at all and still make it funny and I coolly replied, “On my worst day.” Cody hits the powder keg – bullseye! There’s a big explosion. This doesn’t stop the bad guys though. They start firing the cannons at the riders. Jimmy says it’s not fair using guns like that. All is fair in love and war, my friend, all is fair.

Sam asks Cody how far he thinks some “field piece” is, and Cody estimates that it’s between 350 to 400 yards away. WHAT?!?! Whew, that’s about 4 football fields! Did they mean to say 350 to 400 FEET away? Because 1200 feet seems a bit excessive to me. At any rate, Cody licks his thumb, touches the tip of his rifle, and fires. BOOM! Cody prevailed again! And all he could say in response was, “WOOOO HOOOOO HOOOOO!” Sam demands that all the bad guys lay down their weapons.

Back in town Emma is curious why Teaspoon and Jimmy kept everything secret. I guess this is the part of the show where a character starts asking embarrassingly obvious questions so that the writers can tie everything up all nice and neat-like. Teaspoon explains the obvious and mentions it would’ve been too risky. Emma wants to know why they chose ol’ “hothead” Jimmy. Jimmy explains that Grace offered him a job, and it was an offer they couldn’t pass up. Duh! Man, does Emma need everything spelled out for her?

Kid wants to make sure he can still like Jimmy, so he checks with Jimmy to make sure all the stuff he said about Teaspoon was an act. Jimmy says, “Well, maybe not all of it.” Cody claims that he knew all along that Jimmy was bluffing. That’s exactly the kind of thing you’d expect Cody to say.

Teaspoon mentions there’s a possibility that the army will give him and Jimmy a medal. Buck thinks that’s pretty crazy. Cody laughs and says, “Aw shoot Teaspoon.” Of course, we never hear another word about whether they got the medal or not. I’m pretty sure the medal got lost in the mail and was somehow sent to Lou’s brother and sister. Oh sweet irony of ironies. Teaspoon hears a coyote howling and excuses himself. He sees the coyote and says, “I’ll see you soon Prairie Dog, I’ll see you soon… Don’t hold your breath!” The End. You know whenever somebody repeats a phrase at the end of a sentence (i.e. “I’ll see you soon”) then it’s supposed to be a really EMOTIONAL statement. Has anybody actually ever repeated a phrase like that in the same sentence in real life??? I doubt it. I’ve never heard anybody do it, so why do they insist on doing it in TV and movies? I did it four paragraphs prior to this one, but that was just for fun.

Excellent episode. Jimmy is very good, especially when he’s being cocky and going off on everybody. This is a good episode to use as a Young Riders Recruiting Tool. The post-show awards are pretty simple:

Fakest Death Scene: Colonel Brown
Mark-Out Remark: Jimmy Hickok with, “Oh golly, that’s what I’d expect coming from you, Kid.” It's just too funny.
Classic Scene: “The Scene Where Jimmy LAYS THE SMACK DOWN!”

Jimmy is the only rider who could’ve pulled off this scene. None of the other actors can touch the intensity that Josh Brolin brings to the show. Cody provided just enough comic relief to give us a breather every now and then. Even though Colonel Brown’s death scene was fake beyond belief, and even though there were a couple of plot holes near the end, the episode is still very good thanks to Josh Brolin’s very powerful performance as Jimmy Hickok.

Up next is “Hard Time.” Uh-oh, that’s a Kid episode. All you Kid fans might as well go ahead and brace yourself. You better hope I’m in a good mood while writing the review as well. In other words, if y’all go ahead and send me a bunch of gifts then I might be in a better mood while writing the review and Kid might get off easy. Just a few words of advice to get you through the day.

In the immortal words of Batman, "That's one trouble with dual identities, Robin. Dual responsibilities."

This is my opinion, you just might be wrong.
The Sun Sets on The Rider Review
Copyright © 2002 Madlib Productions, All Rights Reserved

[ Home | Intro | Articles and Editorials | Email Pranks | The Rider Review | What's Wrong With People? ]

Email Johnny with all your feedback