Volume 1, Issue 1
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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 - Then There Was One
By Johnny Betts

April 3, 2003

Rider Beat!

What up freaks? You ready to read an absolutely, non-stop hysterical review of "Then There Was One" that will keep you laughing throughout the day? A review that will have your sides hurting? A review that will have you calling friends and family members to let them in on the hilarity? Well if so, then you are in the wrong place. Maybe you'll get one or two laughs at my attempts at humor though. Maybe. Don't bet any money on it.

How does everybody like the new magazine Rider Beat? Who would've thought Ty Miller would make the first cover??? Look for more Rider Beat issues in the future.

Thanks to everybody who stepped up to the latest JOHNNY BETTS GUESTBOOK CHALLENGE:

TaMara, Guylian from Australia (who thinks I'm as "snap-frozen as a Bird's Eye baby pea"), Jennifer K, Angela T-hawk (again!), and ekp. I have no idea who ekp is, but his/her guestbook comment was, "I DON FINISH HERE." Thanks buddy! Right back atcha!

Rider Review Mark of the Last Review: It's a tie. I'm giving it to my new Tech Conn (see the last Sterling review for a definition) Amy C, and Angela T-hawk. These ladies are fairly new to the Rider Review world, and they've both been very enthusiastic in their feedback. I know that after a few more episodes their responses will probably look like, "Great, another review, whatever Johnny," so I've gotta recognize them while they still care.

Amy C and Angela: But WE will always care Johnny!

That's what they all say, gals, that's what they all say.

Interestingly, Angela took my advice and decided to make a log of the time she spent doing Johnny Betts related stuff (reading the reviews, reading my website, sending me emails, shopping for a late birthday gift (hint, hint)), and within about a week I sucked away 3 hours and 28 minutes of her life. Can anybody beat that???

Keep up the good work ladies.

Rider Review Newcomers: Guylian, Jennifer K, and whoever this ekp person is.


Good news! THEY'RE SAVED! Stephanie got me some software for Christmas and my birthday that will allow us to make our own screenshots. I've gotta give Stephanie a BIG thank you because she spent about three hours taking all the screenshots for this episode. She took over 60 screenshots, and I ended up using about 19 of them (which is more than I've ever used in a review). So everybody who loves the screenshots and captions will have a lot more to look forward to in the future.

The Screenshots w/captions Marks of the Last Review:

Oregon Ann with, I like two screen shots in this one. The tumble weed in the office and Sam protecting Emma from a kid episode. Those I think were very funny.

Sarah with, I love the screen captions, especially the one with Sam and Emma that said "Sam shelters Emma as she watches a kid episode," so funny.

Kathi with, As to the caption about the hangnail I like my own caption better, "When did Jimmy take up thumb sucking?"

Weeeeeeell, isn't Kathi just Ms. Comedian??? Just kidding, her caption works well too.


A few alternate titles for this episode:

Johnny Betts: Teaspoon and His Alamo Dreams
Oregon Ann: Teaspoon Goes to Texas and Jimmy and Buck follow him. Or maybe a little shorter one: Teaspoon and the Alamo.
Cathy: Ghosts of the Alamo
Lindsay: Diagnosis Murder


Here's a trivia question for everybody out there. This actor knows what it's like to be hunted, and he's had problems with traffic. If you ask him, then he can probably tell you all about the way of the gun. He's also acted with two members of the Young Riders.

1) Who is the actor?
2) What two Young Riders castmembers has he worked with?
3) What movies/TV shows did they do together?

Come on, please don't let me down! It's not THAT hard! I'm just asking for at least one person to get it right. I'll give you your props in the review, so how can you pass that up???

One last thing before we start the review - can anybody tell me why there are guys out there who wear camouflage in public? I know I'll probably get a lot of hate mail from a bunch of Stone Cold Steve Austin fans, but I just don't understand. If a guy wears camouflage to go hunting, then that's fine. I understand that. But camouflage as a fashion statement? I don't get it. WHAT'S WRONG WITH PEOPLE?!?!?! Ahhh, it felt good to bring that back. Something funny to do is the next time you see somebody wearing camouflage in public you should go bump into them and say, "Oh, sorry, I didn't see you. What with the camouflage and all." Trust me, it'll be hilarious. Report your results to me.

Oh, and before I forget, I just want to thank all two readers who wished me a happy birthday. 'Preciate it.


Rating: 11.2
Share: 18.0
Total Viewers: 17.1 million
Timeslot Ranking: 2nd
Overall Ranking: 49th

This a pretty good rating! Especially considering the fact that TYR was going head-to-head with Cheers. An 18.0 share with 17.1 million viewers certainly isn't anything to be ashamed of. With those kinds of ratings, it'd be a top-10 show nowadays.

Then There Was One. Interestingly, this title refers to the number of Ty Miller fans that still exist today. They're almost extinct! You know, Ty's probably gonna come across my reviews, have a good laugh, decide to send me some cool YR memorabilia, and then he's gonna see the above line and decide to drop the whole thing. Ah well, that's the risk I take for comedy. That's the risk I take for YOU! Oh, and this episode is also often referred to as "And Then There Was One." For the sake of brevity, I'm gonna save myself the trouble of writing 3 extra letters and drop the "and."

It's a Teaspoon episode, which means there were probably plenty of commercials for Geritol and Ben Gay when this episode first aired. We start off with some video footage of the battle of the Alamo. It's obviously from some old movie because there's no way they filmed those extensive battle scenes just for a short dream sequence. Anybody know where the footage is from? Anybody care?

Teaspoon wakes up The storm wakes up Teaspoon. It turns out Teaspoon is having nightmares. Must've been dreaming that he was stuck in a Kid episode and couldn't get out. Either that or he's having flashbacks of "KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park." Anthony, what were you thinking?!?!?!

A tree limb broke a window, forcing Teaspoon to wake up and grab for his gun. Check it out; he's sweating! That's a little TV trick known as, "When someone wakes up let's have him sweating really profusely to let the audience know that he's having some REALLY bad nightmares." Man, look at that fake lightning! I love how they show the same shot of the fake lightning over and over. I've seen better special effects on an Atari 2600 game. Teaspoon goes back to sleep.

Manson's Cameo Some woolly-bearded dude is putting logs on the fire and then gets in bed. Is that really a great idea? Should you be going to bed with a huge fire blazing? If that fire were to spread to dude's woolly beard then it'd have been all over but the kitchen sink. I'm just gonna assume that back in those days you didn't have much choice if you wanted to stay warm. SNAKE! AHHHHHHHH! Somebody put a snake in dude's bed! Woolly Beard is dead. Such a shame, his character was never given the chance to develop. Oh what could've been.

The next day it's raining hard. The rain was coming down as hard as my tears when I heard Stephen Baldwin was doing a movie with Pauly Shore. Whoa, Lou is out on a mail run! It's as if the writers are saying, "This may be our only chance of the episode, so we're gonna let everybody know this show is about the Pony Express!"

Some dude in a slicker is in Lou's path. IT'S THE GUY FROM "I KNOW WHAT YOU DID LAST SUMMER!" Oh wait, he's not wearing a fisherman's hat. Must not be him. The guy claims that he's lost his way. He's not looking for trouble; he's just looking for Teaspoon. For some reason Lou trusts him and lets him follow her back to Sweetwater. Nice. What if it had been an archenemy of Teaspoon's? How funny would it have been if dude murdered Teaspoon as soon as they got to Sweetwater? That would've been real cute. Good job, Lou, real good job of endangering Teaspoon's life.

Teaspoon is fixing his window in the rain. Sounds like something that'd be in a country song.

Nightmares keepin' me awake at night
Memories causin' such pain
My woman and my dog left me this mornin'
Now I'm left here fixin' this window in the rain

If Travis Tritt or Alan Jackson is reading then y'all are more than welcome to buy this song from me. If Kenny Chesney is reading then I'll try to make the lyrics even cheesier and then you can buy it from me.

Buck the dork shows up and mentions the big storm. Buck's never seen a man repair a window before, therefore he's intent on peering over Teaspoon's shoulder. Sorry Buck, but watching a man repair a window is near the bottom of my "Things I must witness" list. I'm really not sure why Buck is getting such pleasure out of it. Teaspoon says it's a delicate operation, especially when he's got a fool standing over his shoulder when there are chores to be done. OUCH! Who peed in Teaspoon's oatmeal this morning??? Buck pouts and flitters away. Actually, I think the wind from the storm carried his 97-pound body away.

Pain Here comes Lou and dude. Do I care? Not really. The guy's name is Erastus, and apparently he and Teaspoon go way back. Somehow Teaspoon doesn't recognize him at first, but then all of a sudden he realizes who it is and starts hugging him. Teaspoon admits that he hasn't been able to get Erastus out of his mind for the last week. That's just disgusting. Teaspoon needs to start thinking more about pretty girls I think.

Teaspoon wants to know why Erastus is there. Could it be a certain approaching 25th Anniversary? 25th Anniversary of what?? Anthony Zerbe winning an Emmy for "Harry O"??? Wow, that's a really cool inside twist by the writers! Good job guys! Zerbe won his Emmy in 1976, and this episode was filmed in 1990, so that's 14 years, BUT it can be said that the 25th anniversary was approaching so that's good enough for me! THE WRITERS ARE GENIUSES! I can pretty much guarantee you that I'm the only person who put the pieces of this puzzle together. However, if you, the reader, also figured this out then let me know and I'll laugh in your face and call you a liar who is trying to be like me.

Erastus starts talking about how the rest of the "survivors" are dead. They were murdered. What is he talking about? Holy cow, I've figured it out! Josh recently stated that if "Mister Sterling" doesn't get renewed for next season, then "reality TV" is partly to blame. It's gonna turn out that Hickok is the murderer and this will be symbolic of how "reality TV" shows (such as SURVIVOR) should be killed off!

Reader: Johnny, do you have anything better to do then sit around and make up absurd stuff like this?

The sad thing is no, I don't.

Teaspoon reflects. Erastus mentions that "Alabama Smith" was snake bit between the eyes the other day. Who? Oh, he must mean Woolly Beard. That's a much better name than the generic "Alabama Smith." Rumor has it that there were a lot of potential characters that were named after states that the writers never used: Tennessee Jones, Pennsylvania Parker, Colorado Jackson, and Montana Miller just to name a few. So here's a tip for everybody who likes to write and has trouble thinking of character names: use a state name for the first name and combine that with a generic last name. Voila! You have a character.

Anyway, the deadly snake was an Eastern Coral snake, and they're not found around where Woolly Beard lived. Hmmm, you know what that means, don't you? Something fishy is afoot! There's something rotten in Denmark! The numbers don't add up! Something here stinks and it ain't the tuna! Erastus mentions that somebody's killing those who are "still left." Teaspoon comments on how it doesn't make sense, and I'm sure most of the viewers would agree since it hasn't been revealed what they're talking about. TYR writers - always keepin' us guessing.

You know, I really don't need to see an advertisement about genital herpes while writing the review. I guess that's what happens when I watch TV and write at the same time.

Erastus is going to Texas to warn the remaining three - Coates, Eberly, and Stanton. Or something like that. Weeeeell, whaddaya know, Teaspoon just got an invite to Stanton's daughter's wedding in Tuscon. Wow, what a co-inky-dink! That's "coincidence" for those of you in Palm Springs. When Teaspoon mentions that "we" gotta go to town and get supplies, Erastus comments on Teaspoon's use of "we." After all, Teaspoon has responsibilities in Sweetwater. True, but Teaspoon comments that he has responsibilities in Texas too.

Teaspoon and the boys head to town to get supplies. Teaspoon tells the riders not to get in any mischief while he and Erastus go pick up a few final supplies. Cody feels Teaspoon's been acting a bit peculiar lately, even for Teaspoon. The riders discuss the recent events, and agree that things seem more out of place than Kid's hair in the morning. The dreams, the punking out of Buck, an old friend in a slicker showing up; it just doesn't make sense! Ah, poor Buck, is he still feeling a little blue about Teaspoon jumping on him? Well, maybe a little blues tune is the cure he needs!

Dair nair nair nair nair
Teaspoon yelled at me this mornin'
Dair nair nair nair nair
Flat out called me a fool
Dair nair nair nair nair
Well I'll really show him
Dair nair nair nair nair
I'll follow him and track his horse's stool!
Ohhhh, I've got the blues
Yeah, yeah, yeah, I've got the sixth sense, manure-trackin' Indian blues
*bluesy guitar solo and fade to end*

The riders approach an army recruiter. The soldier says he has something that might excite them. Cody spies a pretty young woman behind the soldier and asks what her name is. Haha, good ol' Cody. The recruiter says her name is adventure. And excitement. Hmmm, those are kind of strange names for a girl. Although, I went to high school with a girl named Excitement Adventure Jackson. Sometimes I just don't understand what parents are thinking.

Jimmy asks the soldier if he's seen much action, but the recruiter just says something about how a man in uniform impresses the ladies. Hmmm, so is he saying that he HAS seen a lot of action, just not of the battle variety? He then mentions how war is approaching back east and comments on how the glory of battle tests a man. Cody brags about being a keen reader on the subject - Bunker Hill, Concord. Kid speaks up. He hopes Cody isn't really interested in joining the army. I mean, don't the riders know that they must first meet Kid's approval before making a decision?? Somebody forgot to pass around the memo!

Just as the recruiter starts talking about how their life will never be the same, Teaspoon shows up to lay down the smack. He says that war isn't all glory like the recruiter is saying. There is a lot of killing, and he takes exception to anybody selling death as an adventure. He then calls the recruiter a desk-riding, pencil-pushing toy soldier who would fill his britches at the first sight of battle. Hahaha. Toy Soldier, huh? How cool would it have been if Sean Astin had been the "Toy Soldier" recruiter??? We would've had a funny inside joke AND a cool Goonies reunion. They could've also had Corey Feldman appear as an extra in the background. Would've been cool. Teaspoon leads the riders away. After all, they have chores to do.

Back at the Sweetwater Station Erastus tells Teaspoon that he's gonna pass on supper and turn in early. What??? Weird. Erastus doesn't really look like he's missed too many meals in his lifetime, so I'm quite shocked at this turn of events. Teaspoon tells the boys (and Lou) that he and Erastus are leaving for Texas in the morning. He wants them to tend to their chores and mind Emma. Kid gets nosy and asks why Texas. Teaspoon's only explanation is that he and Erastus have personal business there. Lou tries to outsmart Teaspoon and asks him where in Texas they're going. Hey Lou, Teaspoon may be old but he's not senile! Well, not completely senile at least. Teaspoon sees through Lou's scheme and says he ain't telling because he doesn't want them followin'. They have chores to do. When has that stopped them before? Teaspoon then says they'll do the mush talk in morning. For now he's gotta finish packing.

Teaspoon's Reading Materials Teaspoon's in his room, and he opens up an old box. It's got a book, a picture of some woman, and his gun! He puts on his gun belt and practices drawing. And I don't mean drawing pictures (I knew somebody like Rhiannon would try to make a sarcastic comment). Jimmy comes in and Teaspoon draws on him. What? No he didn't draw pictures on Jimmy! Sigh. Would you folks please be serious! Teaspoon's gun accidentally goes off and the shot kills Jimmy instantly. NOOOO! WHY, TEASPOON, WHY?!?!?! That's it, I'm never watching another episode. Oh wait, I'm mistaken, Jimmy wasn't shot and killed. WHEW!

Jimmy drops whatever he's holding and puts his hand on his gun. It's a tense and cool moment. Jimmy starts to say that he doesn't mean to pry, but Teaspoon cuts him off and tells him "then don't." Jimmy's confused. It's not like Teaspoon to leave like this. Jimmy offers his help. Teaspoon appreciates the offer but tells Jimmy it's none of his business. Jimmy asks about the gun, and Teaspoon tells him that's none of his business either. Folks, Teaspoon is all business in this episode. Teaspoon and Erastus ride off. Teaspoon and Erastus, the best old guy buddy team this side of Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon!

It's a good scene, and I'm gonna make it the first "classic scene" nominee of the episode. We'll be brief and call it, "the scene where Teaspoon draws his gun on Jimmy but refuses to talk about the notches carved in it."

The Riders Watch a Kid Episode Jimmy's up early and Lou wants to know why. Jimmy says Teaspoon's gone. Lou doesn't believe it. She says he wouldn't leave without saying goodbye. Yeah, you're right Lou, Jimmy's just making it up. *rolls eyes* Who does Lou think she is, Mrs. Doubtfire? Cody asks them to please keep it down. The poor guy's trying to get some shuteye, and he was riding all night. He should've said, "Would you two button it up, please?" I'd have marked out.

Jimmy says Teaspoon was wearing a gunfighter rig, custom holster and all. Cody says Jimmy's dreaming; Teaspoon ain't no gunfighter. Man, why is everybody so suspicious of what Jimmy is saying today?? Would somebody please believe what the guy is saying! Jimmy isn't dreaming, after all, Teaspoon drew down on him, so I think he knows what he saw. Jimmy claims Teaspoon's the fastest draw he's ever seen. Cody comments that being fast doesn't mean he's a gunfighter, but Jimmy says the notches on his gun say different. Teaspoon was in the Texas Rangers, so Cody should at least realize that it's possible Teaspoon did some gunfighting at one time in his life.

Jimmy's determined to find out what's going on. Kid gets all fussy and alludes to the fact that Teaspoon wants them to stay out of it. When has that ever stopped Kid from sticking his nose where it doesn't belong? Typically Kid would be all, "Did somebody mention butting in on somebody else's business? Count me in!" Why the change of heart? Doesn't make sense.

Jimmy wonders if they're the least bit curious. Lou says Emma needs them, and they've got mail to run. Again, when has that ever stopped them? If it's anything we know about our riders it's that they won't let a few silly mail runs stop them from saving villages and destroying outlaw gangs! Lou then figures they can get by with four riders. Hey, they've gotten by with a lot less than that before! Has Lou forgotten the whole "let Ike take all the runs while the rest of us go save the day" plot convenience? Where was Ike in this episode, by the way? We didn't see his bald head at all. Didn't see Sam or Emma either. At least Emma's name was mentioned.

Jimmy tells them to draw straws to see who's going with him, but Buck mysteriously pops out of the bunkhouse and says he'll go. To keep out of Teaspoon's sight he'll have to be tracked, and Buck's just the Indian with a sixth sense to take on that chore. So Buck was just hanging out in the bunkhouse listening to the conversation and then came out at the last second? Or does he have some magical power that lets him show up when tracking is needed? Jimmy and Buck ride off.

Teaspoon and Erastus chinwag a little about how catching wives was never the problem, it was holding on to them. Teaspoon had "about 6" wives, and Erastus had five. Rumor has it that there was a chance Teaspoon and Erastus would have a spin-off called "Dirty Old West Men," but Erastus' fate at the end of the episode put a stop to those plans.

Jimmy: I didn't know these kind of cactus grew in Texas.
Buck: They don't.

Hahaha, this is an inside joke regarding the fact that the show was filmed in Arizona. The problem is, they wouldn't have been in Texas yet! They just started on the trip, so it's not technically feasible that they already made it to Texas. And they're headed to Tuscon first. Ah well, it's still funny.

I like Jimmy's line, "I've seen a constipated snake ride a straighter course than these two." In fact, I'm gonna make it the first "Mark-Out Remark" nominee. Why? Because it's funny.

Some bad Taco Bell Erastus and Teaspoon talk about the other survivors. Erastus starts getting all metaphorical and starts rambling on about how they're tumbleweed, gone with the wind, never taking root, blah blah blah. He sounds like he's about to cry. *I'm* about to cry listening to this crap. He says he has something growing in his innards. Tapeworm perhaps? Or maybe it's just a bad case of Mexican beans.

Teaspoon knows what he's thinking. Why did they "get out" when so many men didn't? If you haven't seen this episode before, then you still don't know what they're talking about. Unless you made an educated guess. Teaspoon used to think it was a mistake on God's part that he was still alive, but the fact that he's still alive means God didn't make a mistake. At this point we hear a loud voice say, "You dare accuse God of making a mistake???" Then a HUGE hand shows up out of the sky, ala Monty Python's "Meaning of Life," and evaporates Teaspoon. The writers decided they weren't ready to kill off Teaspoon, so they cut this out of the episode. Instead, Teaspoon reflects upon the death of his friends and his enemies. Personally, I think God's huge hand coming out of the sky made for a better scene.

Bad Dream? Teaspoon has another nightmare, wakes up, and rubs his leg. Ummm, this doesn't have anything to do with genital herpes, does it? Holy cow, it's all come full circle! God allowed me to see that commercial in order to have something silly to write about in the review! Teaspoon goes back to sleep.

Itching Early the next morning Teaspoon and Erastus are rudely awakened by three bad guys. Heeeey, isn't the main bad guy the guy who plays Barnett??? Why is Barnett a bad guy???? Did the producers run out of scruffy-bearded extras to play bad guys? The bad guys have their guns drawn. They joke about how Teaspoon and Erastus should've stayed home in their rocking chairs. Their plan is to rob them of gold if they have it. Teaspoon picks up some rocks and starts scratching. He claims it's a nervous itch. Teaspoon and Erastus then fool the less-than-bright bad guys by acting like there's gold in a canteen. Oldest trick in the book, and only the stupidest of bad guys in TYR-land would fall for it. They proceed to beat up the bad guys and dance around like a couple of goofballs.

Jimmy and Buck come across the three bad guys. The bad guys claim they were the ones robbed. Once Jimmy and Buck find out which way Teaspoon and Erastus are headed, they head out. The bad guys seem upset that they're just leaving them, and Buck says they're lucky Teaspoon and Erastus didn't lose their temper. He should've added, "The three of you just got punked out by a couple of arthritic old men. You're lucky we don't spread the news."

Erastus feels they're being stalked. Who does he think he is, Buck? They know a couple of the riders are following them. Instead of being angry, Teaspoon admits that he'd do the same thing if he were their age. But if they won't pay attention to him, then he won't make it easy on 'em. Teaspoon picks up some horse manure. Erastus claims he's seen people step in it, wade in it, and spout it, but he's never seen anybody collect it. I've also seen people put in on celluloid and release it as a video or movie. You can easily recognize it if the video box says "Starring Michael Paré" or "Bio-Dome."

I just saw a pretty disturbing commercial for a Winnie the Pooh baby rattle. A guy in the commercial actually says, "Shake the rattle and watch the baby pooh go." Is this really what kids should be objected to? Do we really need to be naming a toy "baby pooh"?

Caveman Jimmy Speaking of poo, Jimmy and Buck come upon the manure. Jimmy asks Buck, "What's this, a Kid episode?" They both laugh. Jimmy asks Buck to remind him to thank Teaspoon's horse for leaving a trail. Buck stops him and says, "Remind me to thank Kid's writers." They both laugh again. Buck then comments on how they'll have to give Teaspoon's horse some sugar.

Jimmy and Buck follow the trail, but they're led to the edge of a cliff. It's a dead-end! These young-uns have been hoodwinked by the wily old coot! Buck asks Jimmy if he's ever seen Teaspoon's horse fly, and Jimmy says nope, but he's seen a horse's [rear-end] (i.e. he's seen Michael Moore), and that's about how he feels right now. Buck supposes they'll need to give the sugar to Teaspoon.

Ah, it's Stanton's daughter's wedding. Some dude gives a letter to Stanton. Stanton looks at the letter and says, "The son of a gun made it." He goes to the bell tower of the church, where he was told to meet the letter writer. Uh-oh, he stands under a church bell. This can't be good. All of a sudden we hear a voice say, "Your time has come; it's come for all of us." The bell falls.

The Bell Teaspoon and Erastus show up, only to find everybody crying. They find Stanton with the bell lying neatly on top of him. Seriously, you just have to love how the bell is sitting perfectly on top of the guy. Yeah, I'm sure that's how it would've landed. COME ON! A big huge bell falls from the church rafters and it's just going to be neatly lying on top of the guy??? Please. Count that as one of the most unbelievable moments in YR history.

Any way, the letter remains clutched in his cold, dead hand. Teaspoon takes it. The groom mentions that the letter said he was to meet someone, and he asks who it's from. Teaspoon stares blankly in the distance and replies, "Me."

Jimmy and Buck arrive in Tuscon. Jimmy wants to know what up with all the commotion. One of the townsmen says Stanton just got killed. Jimmy makes a comment about how it's not even safe to go in a church anymore, and dude says it's ironic that Stanton died in the church. Then he mentions that Stanton was at the Alamo. He was one of the riders sent for help. Buck and Jimmy are incredulous at this turn of events. So is anybody else who knows their history.

Erastus and Teaspoon continue their tête-à-tête. Erastus wonders why somebody is coming after them after all these years? Teaspoon figures it has to be "one of them." A really old person? Who else would know who the survivors were? Who else couldn't forget?

Jimmy comments that things are getting stranger and stranger. He didn't know there were Alamo surviors. Neither did I, Jimmy, neither did I. Technically there weren't any survivors. I'll discuss the issue later in the review. Could Teaspoon really have been there? Buck says Teaspoon wouldn't have deserted. Jimmy would normally agree, but how much do they really know about the old codger?

Buck's Indian senses start to tingle, and he senses that somebody's behind them. BOOYA! You gotta love it whenever Buck starts gettin' all Indian on us. Jimmy thinks Buck's just spooked, he points out that they're the ones doing the following. Yeah, but come on Jimmy, Buck's an Indian! He senses these type things at least every other episode!

Rosa Teaspoon and Erastus ride up to a little Cantina. Teaspoon spies a young Mexican cutie. I would make a joke about her being a real beauty, a tattoo, and no clue as to how it got there, but most of you readers might not get the Jimmy Buffett reference. Teaspoon approaches the young lady. For some reason he thinks this girl is one he dated many years ago. Is he blind?!?! It's obvious that she's ABOUT 30 YEARS YOUNGER THAN HIM! He asks if she recognizes him and then calls her "Delores." The young girl laughs. She's Rosa, Delores' daughter. Erastus laughs. Man, Teaspoon must really be senile if he thought that could actually be Delores. Do the writers really expect us to believe that Teaspoon would have thought this was Delores? Why are they dissin' The Tea Man like this???

They go in the cantina. Teaspoon sees SOPHIA LOREN! Holy cow, Sophia Loren is playing Delores! Not really, but they look alike. So let's see, Teaspoon proudly proclaims that he came back just like he promised. Delores welcomes him by throwing a bottle at him. Been there. I can't tell you how many times my mother's greeted me the same way. The worst is the time I went over for a visit and a jar of pickles sailed by my head. I have no idea why she did it either.

Apparently Delores was expecting Teaspoon to come back sooner than 22 years. Come on Delores, time can slip away! Teaspoon lies and says he came across the continent just to see her. Delores doesn't hold a grudge for too long. They laugh and hug and she sits on his lap. Man, those wounds really did heal quickly. She makes a comment about Rosa being 21. This causes Teaspoon to pause and think about exactly how long ago he left. How sad is it that every time Teaspoon rides into a new town he has to wonder if he might have any children there? You know, that may explain the whole genital herpes thing!

Generic Bad Guy A rough-looking bad guy approaches Teaspoon. He falls in line with most generic YR bad guys - unshaven, big mustache, mean scowl, you know how it is. He says Teaspoon is the Texas Ranger that busted up his gang. Teaspoon says it was long ago, but the bad guy (whose name is Burkett) says it's fresh in his mind. Does anybody else find it to be just a bit too much of a coincidence that Burkett just happens to be in the cantina the minute Teaspoon comes back after 22 years??? Did the guy decide that he'd just spend all day, every day in the cantina just in case Teaspoon ever came back? Writing a Young Riders Episode - An Exercise in Coincidence.

Jimmy Skywalker Teaspoon tries to say Erastus has no part of this, but Erastus says he already left one battle so he isn't leaving this one. Teaspoon draws his gun under the table. He warns Burkett that he doesn't want to do this. Burkett thinks he's bluffing. Maybe he is, maybe he ain't, how bad does Burkett wanna find out? Fairly bad apparently. Burkett draws, but Teaspoon quickly shoots him. GUNFIGHT! Of course, Jimmy and Buck conveniently burst in JUST IN TIME and clear house. As per usual, the good guys have prevailed with nary a casualty.

Teaspoon apologizes to Delores about the redecorating. She understands though; some things just never change. Teaspoon says he'll make no promises this time; he might not be back for a while. Delores says she didn't expect him today, and she won't expect him "mañana." Ooooooh, she is SO Mexican! They kiss.

Teaspoon supposes that he should thank Jimmy and Buck for not listening to him. He's impressed they managed to stay on their trail. Jimmy says "that little trick back there" didn't fool them for a second. Hahaha. Teaspoon appreciates their help, but orders them to go home now. Jimmy says OK, and Teaspoon and Erastus leave. Jimmy just can't figure ol' Teaspoon out. In an effort to try to figure the old guy out, Buck asks Delores if Teaspoon was at the Alamo.

Cactus She explains that Teaspoon was one of the men who was sent for reinforcements, but they didn't get back in time. Does anybody have ANY idea if this could be factual? I've done some research and can't really find anything about men being sent for reinforcements. For a while after the Alamo he did some crazy things. Jimmy asks if that has anything to do with the notches on his gun, but Delores says he'll have to ask Teaspoon that. Jimmy tries to flirt with Rosa a little bit, but Delores calls her inside. Rosa says bye, and Buck shows how bilingual he is and says "adios." He's an educated Indian!

Jimmy says he can't believe they're really going back after all the distance they traveled. Jimmy and Buck look at each, shake their heads, and say, "Naaaah." Yeah! Don't quit now! Keep the faith! Fight the good fight! Carry on my wayward son!

Teaspoon and Erastus show up at the Goliad Asylum. Supposedly Eberly is here. People are walking around acting crazy. This basically consists of people with tousled (that's a weird word!) hair walking really slow and trying to grab Teaspoon. Oh, and they all pretty much have wide-eyed looks. Asylum dude says Eberly is no longer there. Teaspoon asks if he was cured, but the asylum dude tries to act philosophically crazy and asks how many of us can say we're totally well. Whatever dude. How many of us can say we know how to act? Obviously not YOU!

Turns out Eberly left about a year and a half ago. Teaspoon has to bribe the guy with a gold piece to get the guy to reveal where Eberly currently resides. Dude bites the coin only to find out THAT IT WAS A CHOCOLATE COIN! TEASPOON REALLY FOOLED HIM! Luckily, working in an asylum for years has made the dude crazy so he's perfectly happy with some chocolate. You know, I would've bribed him with a boot to his head and a punch to the gut. Don't give a freak like that money! If you want a guy like that to talk then you use a little strong-armin'. Come on Teaspoon, this is the WILD WEST! Dude gives them Eberly's last known residence. Erastus asks if he's sure if Eberly's still there. The guy is certain of it. Hmmm, I guess that means Eberly is in a graveyard. Nah, the writers wouldn't make it THAT obvious...

Ty's Career Tombstone Teaspoon and Erastus are in a graveyard. There's Eberly's marker. Sigh. Seems he died almost a year ago, right before the killings. That leaves one more survivor. Unless he's dead or ... DUHN DUHN DUHN ... THE KILLER!

Kenny Rogers Teaspoon and Erastus go to visit ... KENNY ROGERS! Or is that Jon Voight?? We'll go with Kenny Rogers. Oooooh, the camera focuses on a hook! You know what that's called? Foreshadowing. Chances are somebody's gonna be hangin' from it before the next commercial break. Kenny's holding a pitchfork. Are the writers trying to tell us that Kenny Rogers is the devil?? Why? What's their beef with The Gambler?!?!?!?!

Kenny asks what Teaspoon and Erastus want. Teaspoon introduces himself and Erastus, but Kenny knows who they are, and he didn't invite them. He wants to forget the Alamo, and tells them to move on. Teaspoon notices that Kenny's fields haven't been tended to lately, and he wonders where he's been. Kenny responds, "There's been a drought. You gotta know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away, know when to run. And now is the time for you TO RUN OFF MY LAND!" As Teaspoon and Erastus ride off they hear a scream. Uh-oh. Kenny's hanging on the hook. TOLD YA! Looks like it was time for him to fold 'em. You could say Kenny Rogers is Roasted Chicken! Ba-dum-dum-psh! Thank you, thank you.

Teaspoon is dismayed that they came all this way and saved nobody. In fact, they may never know who the killer was. Erastus notices a cross drawn on the barn in blood. Is that a sign of redemption? Not according to Teaspoon. He's apparently a know-it-all and says it's a sign of confession. How does Teaspoon know this? Because he's obviously an expert in reading bloody symbols. DUH!

I've gotta share a funny story with y'all. I'm a web developer for an investment company, and there's a guy on my floor whose last name is of French-Canadian origin. When we refer to people "upstairs" we're referring to the people who do all the investment work. So the other day I go up to dude and ask, "Hey Will, isn't your last name of French-Canadian origin?" He knows something is up and asks, "All right, what are you getting at?" I respond with, "Somebody upstairs needs some help surrendering some assets and was wondering if anybody here had a French ancestry." HAHAHAHA, I am SO funny! You gotta understand investment lingo to get the full effect of the joke. Anyway...

It's nighttime, and Jimmy and Buck are in the graveyard spying on Teaspoon and Erastus. Jimmy wants to know why they're digging up a grave. He wants to get a closer look, but Buck is scared of disturbing dead spirits. Teaspoon sneaks up on them and yells "howdy boys!" This startles them and causes them to jump. As punishment for not listening to him, Teaspoon makes Jimmy and Buck finish digging. Well, Jimmy does the digging. I think they know Buck's arm would snap in half if he tried to shove a shovel into the ground.

Buck comments that they shouldn't be doing this, but Teaspoon tells him there's no sanctity being violated here. Jimmy feels he deserves to know why he's digging. Teaspoon's response is "to get to the casket of course. DIG!" Hahaha. Jimmy hits something and says that's as far as he goes.

Bio-Dome They open the casket and ... it's TY MILLER'S POST-TYR CAREER! It's all coming together. How funny would it have been if Eberly's skeleton was in there? It would have been priceless to see Buck freak out and then to have Teaspoon say, "Um, whoopsie, sorry about that whole 'no sanctity being violated' thing, Buck."

Teaspoon knows where to head next. He's a little upset though because apparently they've been leading Eberly to the victims. Jimmy is fed up with all this and demands to know what's going on. Teaspoon gets really descriptive and fully explains the situation to Jimmy when he responds with, "Old debts." Thanks Teaspoon, I'm sure that cleared up everything for Jimmy.

They ride up to the Alamo. Teaspoon never thought he'd be back. He finally decides to tell Jimmy about the notches on his gun. He started carving the notches after the war so that when he killed someone he'd never forget it. So did he make each carving unique? Did he carve the initials of the guy he killed? I'm pretty sure I wouldn't forget killing a guy. I might forget his name, but a simple carving wouldn't jog my memory.

Teaspoon tells Jimmy and Buck that no matter what they hear, and no matter what happens, this is for he and Erastus alone. Cool it's the fake lightning again. I'm pretty sure it's the same fake lightning shot from the very beginning. Gotta love that stock footage!

Skating Teaspoon and Erastus approach the Alamo. Teaspoon yells out to Eberly and tells him it's all over now. Apparently Eberly doesn't agree because we hear a gunshot. Teaspoon runs to take cover. Teaspoon's stuntman does a cool little thing where he gets under a wagon and causes the horse to ride to a fountain. Some horses in a pen break loose. Erastus is anti-climactically stabbed with a spear. His dying words are ... Mexican lamp? What in the world does that mean? Maybe it's a clue to a puzzle that Teaspoon has to figure out. Let me check the ol' closed captioning ... ohhhhhhh, Mexican LANCE! Is it supposed to be ironic that he's killed by a MEXICAN lance?? What's Teaspoon's response to all this? "EBERLY!" The door to the Alamo mysteriously opens. Ooooooh, it's one of those spirits that Buck was afraid of! WAY TO GO TEASPOON! YOU'VE DONE IT NOW!

Candles are lit. We hear Eberly say that a candle is lit for each of their fallen friends. There are two unlit candles. They're for Teaspoon and Eberly. Eberly says a lot of good men died that day and then whines about how they didn't deserve the lives, sons, or daughters that they had. Teaspoon counters by saying the world needs witnesses like them to tell 'em how it was. Just because war ends doesn't mean it's over and just because a man lives doesn't mean he didn't die. Eberly responds with a few gunshots. Teaspoon claims that if they tell it enough, to anyone who'll listen, then maybe they'll think twice about doing it again. Is he finally getting through to Eberly? Nah, Eberly shoots him.

Rain Man Eberly asks Teaspoon if he really thinks that's true. Teaspoon doesn't know. All he knows is 183 men died at the Alamo for what they thought was freedom, but he doesn't know if it was worth it. Eberly says the two of them are gonna join their dead comrades. Teaspoon throws something at him, gets his gun, and shoots Eberly.

Teaspoon goes over to Eberly and listens to him talk like Rain Man for a couple of minutes. Eberly just proceeds to ramble on. And the longer he rambles on, the less I seem to care. He's sorry, he didn't mean to do it, he hears Colonel Travis, etc. Whatever dude. He claims Travis wants two riders to go for help, but he says they aren't going. Teaspoon plays along and says he's not going; he's staying until the end. Eberly is too. Eberly says he's scared. Teaspoon says he isn't alone. Eberly dies. There's really no way to sugarcoat it.

Teaspoon puts his Clint Eastwood-esque parka over Eberly's face. He lights one of the candles and says ... DUHN DUHN DUHN ... "Then there was one." He limps out of the Alamo, lightning flashes, the end. Jimmy and Buck are nowhere to be seen. I find it hard to believe they wouldn't have run in to check on him. Come on, they hear gunshots inside the Alamo and they're just gonna sit there and say, "Oh well, let Teaspoon die if that's what he wants"?? I doubt it.


It's not the best episode in the series, but I enjoyed it. It was cool to get a look at Teaspoon's past, and Jimmy and Buck following him provides some good humor. Is it a YRRT? Not really, unless your grandmother has a crush on Anthony Zerbe, then you should definitely show this episode to her.

I call into question the historical accuracy of the episode. As we all know, there were no Alamo survivors. So I'm assuming that the writers have provided themselves with a little historical leeway by saying, "Well, Teaspoon and his friends weren't necessarily Alamo survivors. Since they were sent for reinforcements, they weren't at the Alamo when the final siege took place." Fine, but I've never read any accounts of people who had been fighting at the Alamo but lived because they were sent for reinforcements. Ah well, it is fiction, so they do have a little poetic license at their disposal.

Mark-Out Remark: There weren't too many great quotes in this episode, and I know everybody's expecting it to be Jimmy's quote about the constipated snake, but I'm gonna throw a swerve and give it to Teaspoon for his comment about the recruiter being a, "desk-riding, pencil-pushing toy soldier who would fill his britches at the first sight of battle." It's always fun when Teaspoon gets riled up.

Classic Scene: It's gotta be, ""the scene where Teaspoon draws his gun on Jimmy but refuses to talk about the notches carved in it." The scene creates good tension, and it was cool to see a flash of Teaspoon's gunfighting past. And hey, it was interesting to see Jimmy caught off guard a bit.

I must say, I did learn quite a few things from this episode. Here are the top five, in order of their appearance in the episode:

  1. If held at gunpoint by three guys you can fool them by scratching your arm and acting like you have gold in a canteen.
  2. Horse manure can be invaluable in multiple ways.
  3. A huge bell can fall from atop church rafters and manage to defy the laws of science and neatly land on top of someone.
  4. Generic bad guys will sit in a cantina for 22 years waiting and hoping for their moment of revenge.
  5. To convince someone that you're insane all you have to do is tousle your hair, stumble around aimlessly, and grab at people.


My good friend Beth F. made a worthy suggestion regarding this segment of the review. A lot of times I get responses saying, "I don't really remember this episode, so I can't say how it changed my life." So in the future, I'll let you tell me how an episode changed your life AFTER I review it. I'll go ahead and include the entries I've already received, but if you'd like to tell me how "Then There Was One" changed your life then you can still let me know and it'll be in the next review.

Beth F: I suppose it helped me develop some more respect for my elders. The boys had no idea really about the past history of their boss and it was good for them to learn more about him ... Let's say it changed my life because after watching it, I was certain I never wanted to join the army just in case it might kill me later. *sarcastic grin*

It changed my life in the opposite way. It made me want to join the army and go fight the Mexicans. However, the army recruiter told me that at 15, I was too young to join. He then explained to me that we weren't fighting the Mexicans anymore either. So I decided not to pursue it any further.

Amy C: How "And Then There Was One" Changed My Life by Amy

See how official she is? It's almost as if she's writing a school paper, very impressive! Back to Amy...

"ATTWO" taught me a most valuable life lesson -- old folks are cagey! Oh, they look all cute with their receding white hair, grizzly unshaven faces and their rumpled dirty clothes, but that's all a ruse used to lull the unwary into a feeling of ease. Once their prey has made the fatal mistake of underestimating them, it's John Lee Hooker time -- boom, boom, boom. Next thing you know you are getting the crap beat out of you and then tied up and left to die. I mean, you can explain away the villainous thieves being fooled. They are, after all, TYR villains. As we've observed, no breed of TV villain is dumber. But those two old coots totally pulled the wool over Hickok's eyes. Hickok, that natural genius who goes from illiterate hothead to Rhodes Scholar candidate in the space of one season, could only be so fooled into following misplaced horse puckey by the most cunning of opponents. Thank heavens Teaspoon never turned his talents to evil. Old folks equal cagey, because of "ATTWO," I'll never make such a mistake.

*wipes tear from eye* Beautiful, simply beautiful. And it's oh so true. I too learned this lesson, but unfortunately for me there was a time I ignored it. As some of you know, I wrestled in high school. And what's more fun than showing your grandmother a few wrestling moves you've learned? Well, one day I thought it would be cute to demonstrate a bent arm bar on my grandmother. After triumphantly executing the move, I was prancing around and grandstanding in front of my siblings. That's when I felt a sharp blow to the back of my head. I turned around just in time to see my grandmother landing a spinning roundhouse kick to my jaw.

It didn't knock me off my feet, but it did hurt my jaw quite a bit. As I rubbed my jaw, my grandmother said, "Do you need a third, or is that enough?" I replied, "That'll be enough for now." I learned a valuable lesson that day - if I was gonna practice wrestling moves on my grandmother then the best strategy was to attack and RUN!

Cathy: It changed my life in knowing that as you get older you still got all the best moves. I mean they kicked some butt when those outlaws tried to rob them. And who else could throw off Buck, the best tracker in the West, with that old "put the crap in the wrong direction game."

It's obvious that this episode gave its props to old people. We have obviously learned that we should never underestimate the elderly. They just might surprise you. And when old people start using manure to deceive you, well, it's all over at that point. There's no hope left for you.

Lindsay: "Then There Was One" changed my life in that I realized that some days you just can't get rid of Jimmy and Buck.

This is a good point. Yes, we learned that not all old people are helpless vegetables, but we also learned to never underestimate the resolve of a young heart. Jimmy and Buck could've quit at any time, but they kept pushing forward. Even after they fell for the horse manure trick they regrouped and got back on track. They fought the good fight and never gave up. And isn't that what America's all about? In some ways, you could say Jimmy and Buck were symbolic of the American dream in this episode. Quite simply, they gave hope to the hopeless and dreams to the sleepless. Rock on Jimmy and Buck, rock on.


*As Johnny finishes the review he picks up the broken bat that was delivered by Fed-Ex, gets in his truck, and heads to the White Station Baseball field. Standing in front of the field brings a rush of memories and emotions.*

Johnny: It's been 10 years. I never thought I'd be back here.

*All of a sudden he hears a familiar voice.*

Walker: Your time has come; it's come for all of us.

*Johnny looks up and notices the huge baseball sign at the front of the field gate falling in his direction. Like Michael Moore leaping for the last piece of cake, Johnny hurriedly jumps out of the way, narrowly avoiding disaster.*

Johnny: WALKER! Come on out, this is over. I got the baseball bat. You want to tell me what this is all about?

*Walker responds by throwing a couple of baseballs past Johnny's head. Johnny picks up a couple of baseballs of his own to use as ammunition. As he heads to the dugout to take cover, Johnny is hit in the leg by a ball and knocked to the ground.*

Johnny: Why don't you show your face and quit hiding like a coward!

Walker: A lot of good men lost in that game that day. When you hit the ball you broke more than this bat that day. *Walker throws the other half of the broken bat in Johnny's direction* You broke an entire team's spirit.

Johnny: Is that what this is all about? A stupid baseball game? Or do you just want to try to sound cool and philosophical by using a stupid analogy? Look, nobody's more upset about that game than I am. I would've knocked in the winning run! I was going to be the hero! But no, the stupid scorekeeper wrote down the wrong jersey number for me, and because the jersey number I wore didn't correspond with the jersey number recorded in the stat sheet the coach on the other team complained and they ruled me out.

Walker: You cost us the game!

Johnny: THE SCOREKEEPER COST US THE GAME! You want to take your anger out on someone then take it out on him.

Walker: I already did. You're the only one left.

Johnny: You need help, Walker. Don't you remember that we were in the right? After the game, it was determined that the umpire made the wrong call. But in the state of Tennessee you can't play a game under protest. We should've won the game! I never should've been called out!

Walker: But you were, and we lost. That broken bat resembles our broken dreams of winning the state title.

Johnny: What is it with you and these stupid analogies?!?! Look, the world needs witnesses to tell them what really happened. They need to know that the umpires made a mistake that cost us dearly. Just because a game ends doesn't mean it's really over. Just because a team wins doesn't mean they didn't lose.

Walker: What? You're not altering Young Riders quotes again, are you?

Johnny: The point is that if we tell the truth enough, to anyone who will listen, then maybe they will think twice about doing it again. Maybe another team will be saved from an umpire's stupid mistake.

*With that Johnny picked up a baseball and hurled it at Walker's head, knocking him to the ground. Johnny goes over to check on him.*

Walker: I'm sorry, Johnny. I didn't mean to do it. I hear Coach Holt. He wants us to run bases because we lost. But I'm not gonna do it. Are you gonna do it?

Johnny: No, not me. Too tiring.

Walker: I'm scared, Johnny.

Johnny: You're not alone.

Walker: Are you scared too?

Johnny: Nah, not Johnny Betts, but other people in life are scared, therefore, you're not alone.

Triumphant Johnny *Walker's eyes close and his head bobs to the side. He's not dead, just asleep. Johnny covers his face with his old baseball jacket. For some reason a candle is lying on the field. Amazingly, a lighter is on the field also. Johnny lights the candle and says, "Then there was one." Johnny limps out of the baseball field, and lightning flashes as he just stands there at the front gate. He would live to play another day.*

In the immortal words of Clint Eastwood, "You see in this world there's two kinds of people my friend, those with loaded guns, and those who dig ... you dig!"

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

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