CTVA - The Virginian 2.29 [059] "Dark Destiny"  29-Apr-1964

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2.29 [059]
"Dark Destiny"

 (not to be confused with episode #51 'A Matter of Destiny')
Original NBC Broadcast - 29 April 1964
 &Revue Studios Production
Executive Producer Frank Price
Produced by Don Ingalls
Written by Frank Chase
Directed by Don McDougall

Starring
(Shown on ride in)
Lee J. Cobb as Judge Henry Garth (not in this episode)
Doug McClure as Trampas (not in this episode)
Gary Clarke as Steve
and
James Drury as The Virginian

Co-Starring (No Guest Star Credits)
Brenda Scott [Billie Jo Conrad]

Complete Ending Credits
Co-Starring
Randy Boone as Randy
Robert J. Wilke as Conrad
Cal Bartlett as Bill
Ross Elliott as Sheriff Abbott
*
With
Edward Faulkner … as Striker
Mark Tapscott … as The Deputy
John Bryant … as Dr. Spaulding
David McMahon … as The Conductor
*
Virginian Theme by Percy Faith
*
Director of Photography John L. Russell A.S.C.
*
Story Editor Cy Chermak
*
Art Director … George Patrick
Film Editor …Danford B. Greene
Assistant Director … Charles S. Gould
Set Decorators … John McCarthy and Perry Murdoch
Sound … Frank H. Wilkinson
Color Consultant … Alex Quiroga
Color by Pathé
*
Editorial Dept. Head … David J. O'Connell
Musical Supervision … Stanley Wilson
Costume Supervisor … Vincent Dee
Makeup … Bud Westmore
Hair Stylist … Larry Germain
The title "The Virginian" by permission of EMKA, LTD.

Series regular characters appearing in this episode:
Featuring Randy and the Virginian with Steve

Brief Synopsis
The Shiloh hands capture horse thieves and the Virginian is given temporary
custody of the outlaw leader's daughter, Billie Jo (Scott).  The feisty
tomboy takes care of Randy after he's paralyzed by a fall and becomes torn
between the friends and the home she has found at Shiloh and her plans to
help her father break out of jail. [ksl]

Detailed Synopsis
Out on Shiloh range, Steve, Randy and some other hands are looking for
the horses that were stolen the night before. They see smoke coming up
out of a ravine and Steve goes to investigate. Seeing horse thieves busy
changing the brands on the stolen horses, Steve motions for the others
to come and they quietly surround them. Once the hands are in place,
Steve, with gun drawn, makes his presence know by saying, “Stand easy
and no one gets killed.” But one of them draws his gun and fires at Steve.
Steve shoots back and the man is dead. As the rest of the hands move in
on them, Conrad, one of the thieves spits out, “He’s my brother, Mister!”

From behind a bush, someone runs; Randy spots them and shoots. He misses
and they duck behind a rock. Randy goes in pursuit and is clobbered on the
head. As a struggle ensues, Randy’s opponent’s hat comes off and long
brown hair tumbles down. Randy realizes he is fighting with ‘a girl’. He
drags her back to the clearing and Steve questions, “What you got there?”
To which Randy disgustedly replies, “You tell me!” Steve tells Bill, one
of the hands, to ride to Shiloh and inform the Virginian what has
happened and to meet them at the Sheriff’s Office.

As they enter the Sheriff’s Office, the Virginian has already arrived
and is talking with Sheriff Abbott and the Deputy. The Sheriff comments,
“You know, one of these days, you boys from Shiloh are going to surprise
me and come in here just for a friendly visit.” To which the Virginian
retorts, “You can’t say we don’t do our bit for law enforcement.” He
explains to the Sheriff about the horses being stolen and the hands
rounding up the thieves. The Sheriff asks who the girl is and she says
that Conrad is her Pa. Steve relates to the Sheriff about the killing
of Conrad’s brother and Conrad interjects, “Yeah, I won’t be forgettin’
that!” The Sheriff asks more questions and finds out that the girl,
Billie Jo, is 17. He talks the Virginian into letting her stay at Shiloh
until her father’s trial is over. As Conrad is lead to his cell, he
sneers at Steve, “You and me will meet again, boy.” Steve flippantly
replies, “Anytime!” But looks worried.

The Virginian arrives at Shiloh with Billie. Steve and Bill discuss how
pretty she is under all that trail dirt. Randy disagrees and Steve
attributes his attitude to the lump on his head and his busted pride.
With Judge Garth and Betsy away, the Virginian shows Billie to Betsy’s
room, but has little patience for her attitude and leaves her there…
”I’ve got work to do.” Randy, alone in the bunkhouse, laments his not
understanding girls by singing, ‘Ridin’ that New River Train’. When
he is finished, he scowls, “Women!”

At the corral, the boys are breaking horses for an upcoming shipment.
It’s been a long day and the next horse is an exceptionally wild one
and it’s Randy’s turn. The Virginian asks if he would rather start fresh
in the morning. Randy swaggers, “When I’m finished with him, some old
lady can keep him in her parlor like a pet dog.” As Randy mounts the
bronc, Billie walks up and stands by the Virginian. He comments, “I see
I forgot to point out the wash basin.” Randy’s ride doesn’t go well.
He is thrown off and badly injured. He can’t move his legs. The Virginian
and Steve carry him to the bunkhouse.

Dr. Spaulding examines Randy and assesses that his spinal column is damaged
and the paralysis could be for a week or longer. He gives Randy a chart of
exercises and tells him to take hot water baths. The doctor tells the
Virginian that Randy will need someone close by all the time, to which
the Virginian states, “Whatever he needs, he’ll get!”

The next morning, the hands ride out and the Virginian asks Billie to help
Randy with his exercises. She gives him an argument and he insinuates that
she might not eat if she doesn’t pull her weight around the ranch. She
sasses back that the Sheriff said that the Virginian had to take care of
her. He comes back flatly, “Fact is, the only person on this ranch I have
to take care of right now is Randy! And that’s because I want to.”
Reluctantly, Billie makes her way to the bunkhouse. Randy, sitting in
a wheel chair, balks at the idea of her help; but agrees when she tells
him that the Virginian ‘has given her orders’.

Out in the barn, Randy works on his exercises as Billie half-heartedly
assists him. Finally, Randy has enough of her ‘doggin’ it’ and tells
her, “Now I’m gonna do every one of my exercises again, and I’m gonna
do them right and that means you pitch in and help.” The Virginian and
the hands ride in from the days work and he asks how things went with
the exercises. Having reclaimed some of his dignity, Randy replies,
“…. once I put her in her place, she did just fine.” The Virginian
says he is going to town and Billie asks to go with him to see her Pa
in jail.

At the Sheriff’s Office, the Virginian and Sheriff Abbott discuss just
how much Billie has been involved with the cattle rustling and the
horse thieving. Conrad tells Billie to get him a gun and put it through
his cell window. The Virginian loads his supplies and on the way home
the Virginian and Billie debate the virtues of working for a living
and stealing for a living. Billie reveals that she thinks Randy is
faking his injury; the Virginian totally disagrees.

Again, at his exercises, Randy is getting blisters from the equipment.
Billie shows some compassion by cushioning them with rags… “Well, no
use getting blisters on top of the ones you already have.” Here, they
come to some sort of friendship.

Dr. Spaulding comes to check Randy’s progress and asks if he has been
doing the exercises and the hot water baths. The Virginian playfully
interjects, “Fact is, he’s so clean we can hardly stand him around
here.” Billie is watching and listening from outside the bunkhouse.
The doctor examines Randy and finds he still doesn’t have any feeling
in his legs. Randy struggles to get some movement from his legs.
Despondent because of the lack of improvement, Randy wheels himself
out of the bunkhouse passing Billie on the way… “Just leave me alone
and I won’t bother you none either.” The Virginian comes out and asks
Billie, “Did you see? Still think he’s putting on an act?” She shakes
her head no and runs to the house.

Randy wheels himself to the darkened barn where his exercise equipment
is kept. The Virginian follows him and watches solemnly from the
doorway. Randy tries with all his might to walk using the parallel bars
and falls flat on his face. The Virginian comes to his side, “Would
you rather I leave?” Randy resignedly replies, “I guess I’ll be needin’
that chair.” After the Virginian gets Randy back in his wheelchair,
he tries to give him a pep talk but Randy isn’t very accepting. The
Virginian offers to take him back to the bunkhouse but Randy mutters,
“I like it here, where it’s dark.”

Billie is up early the next morning to help Randy with his exercises
and finds him still in his bunk and unwilling to get up. She confides
to him that she actually cares if he walks again… (crying) “I won’t
ever be so foolish again.” The Virginian and the hands return to the
bunkhouse from the days work and are a bit boisterous. Seeing Randy
in his bunk the Virginian shushes the hands and inquires how Randy is
doing. The Virginian tells him he can get back to work mending
harnesses. Randy asks to be moved out of the bunkhouse and the Virginian
says they can fix him a place in the study up at the house.

The Virginian invites Billie to come along with everyone to the social
that evening. She begs off because she doesn’t have a proper dress to
wear. He tells her that Betsy would be pleased if she borrowed one
of her party dresses. The Virginian stops at the house to see if Billie
is going to the social. As he is talking with Randy, Billie comes in
the room wearing a dress and with her hair all done up… “Do I look
alright?” “Down right beautiful, Billie,” the Virginian responds as
he kicks Randy’s cot, “Right, Randy?” She asks Randy to come with them
but he says he hasn’t got time for socials. She curtly replies, “Oh,
that’s right, I forgot. You got no time for anything but sittin’
around and feeling sorry for yourself.” As they leave, the Virginian
comments that she was pretty hard on Randy. To the Virginian’s surprise,
Randy appears at the door announcing that he is going to the social.

They arrive at the social, help Randy inside and Billie goes to the
jail to show her Pa how she looks all dressed up. Conrad is pleased to
see his daughter dressed so nice but is more interested in why she hasn’t
gotten him a gun yet.

Back at the dance, Billie sees all the gun belts and guns that have been
left hanging in the lobby. She enters the room and the Virginian asks
her to dance…as Randy looks on. In between dances, the Virginian
introduces Billie to Dr. Spaulding who tells her she has done a wonderful
job of helping Randy and if she is interested he can get her into nursing
school. Steve interrupts and takes her to the dance floor really kicking
up his heels…as Randy looks on. When no one is looking Billie slips out,
steals one of the guns from the lobby, hands it through the cell window
bars to her Pa and returns to the dance. Conrad and his partner, Striker,
break out of jail.

At the dance, everyone is dancing ‘heartily’…as Randy looks on. Finally,
not being able to take anymore, Randy hurriedly wheels himself from the
room. The Virginian follows and suggests it is time to go home. Steve
and Billie agree and decide to go home too.

Back home at Shiloh, Randy tells Billie, “I ain’t giving up again, never.”
As the Virginian and Steve are putting the horses away, out walk Conrad
and Striker with guns drawn. They take the Virginian and Steve up to the
house to get Billie and … ”To even up a blood score for my brother.”

Billie helps Randy onto his cot and Randy asks her to stay at Shiloh and
help him with his recovery. At that moment, in walk the four men. Conrad
yells at Randy to go stand with the Virginian and Steve. When Randy doesn’t
move, Conrad throws him on the floor and Billie goes to his side. She tells
Conrad that she’s not going with him; she is staying at Shiloh. When Randy
sees his chance, he knocks the gun out of Conrad’s hand and Billie picks it
up. Torn between her father and the friends and home she now has at Shiloh,
she doesn’t return the gun to her father but tosses it across the room. A
fight ensues and Striker is knocked out cold and during the struggle Conrad
is shot dead by the Virginian.

When things settle down, they help Randy up and ask if he is okay…”Except my
knee, I banged it when I fell.” Realizing that he felt pain in his leg he
is very happy until he sees Billie sobbing at the death of her father.

At the train station, the Virginian and Steve see Billie off to nursing school
giving her instructions on where to go, who to see and insist on at least
one letter a week. The Virginian hands her a locket from Randy which is engraved,
‘Billie Jo, Thank You, Randy.’ The Virginian explains that Randy wasn’t there
himself to see her off because he hates goodbyes. As the train pulls out,
Randy is seen on the train platform and Billie Jo and Randy wave their last goodbye. [ksl]

Comments
The Virginian, a tough ramrod, shows compassion and concern for the well being
of both Randy and Billie numerable times. [ksl]

Although Billie acts like she is put out by staying at Shiloh, she quickly
adapts to having a home and friends.

Note
Brenda Scott also guest stars in 4.17 "Men With Guns," 6.18 "Jed," and 7.24
"The Girl in the Shadows" [ksl]

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Main Contributor for this episode -  Karen S. Lindsey  [ksl]