Writer: Jack Curtis, from an idea by Marian Carpenter
Director: Gene Nelson
Original Air Date 11/27/1961
Chuck Connors as Lucas McCain
Johnny Crawford as Mark McCain
Paul Fix as Marshal Micah Torrance
Edgar Buchanan was an American character actor who appeared in over 100 films and dozens of television series, including several long-lived sitcoms. In a career spanning four decades, he played grizzled, gravelly-voiced characters and was frequently cast in westerns. His most well-known and lovable character was Uncle Joe Carson, who appeared in all 222 episodes of "Petticoat Junction," (1963-1970), 17 episodes of "Green Acres" (1965-1969), and, in 1968, three episodes of "The Beverly Hillbillies" (1962-1971). In his last role, the 1974 film "Benji," he co-starred with the dog (Higgins) from his stint on "Petticoat Junction." Buchanan made six appearances in THE RIFLEMAN, portraying Grandpa Fogerty in "The Long Goodbye" (Episode 119) and the recurring character of Doc Burrage in five, including "The Pet" (episode 15), "The Second Witness" (episode 23), "The Trade" (episode 24), "The Deadly Wait" (episode 26), and "The Angry Man" (episode 31).
Virginia Christine, born Virginia Christine Kraft, was an American film and television actress who appeared in more than 150 movies and television shows in a career spanning 35 years. She attended the University of California, Los Angeles, where she met her acting coach and future husband, Fritz Feld. In 1942, Christine signed an acting contract with Warner Bros. Although primarily a television actress, she appeared in a few high-profile films, including the noir film, "The Killers" (1946), starring Burt Lancaster, in which she played the role of Lilly Harmon Lubinsky; and the sci-fi cult classic, "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" (1956), in which she portrayed Wilma Lentz.
Christine garnered roles in almost every genre in television, appearing in many popular series, including the thrillers, "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (1955–1962) and "Twilight Zone" (1959–1964), as well as crime dramas and mystery series, including "Peter Gunn" (1958–1961), "The Untouchables" (1959–1963), "77 Sunset Strip" (1958–1964) and "Perry Mason" (1957–1966). She is probably best-remembered as Mrs. Olsen in the Folgers Coffee ads.
Christine made two appearances in THE RIFLEMAN, portraying Mrs. Hardy in "The Spiked Rifle" (episode 49) and Mrs. Dalrymple in "The Long Goodbye" (episode 119). She also guest-starred in numerous westerns, including "The Lone Ranger" (1949–1957), "The Restless Gun" (1957–1959), "The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp" (1955–1961), "Wanted: Dead or Alive" (1958–1961) , "Tales of Wells Fargo" (1957–1962), in which she had a recurring role as Ovie Swenson, "Bonanza" (1959–1973) and "The Virginian" (1962–1971).
Teddy Rooney, born Ted Michael Rooney, is an American film and television actor. He has appeared in 12 movies and television shows in five years. His father is the famed actor Mickey Rooney. He portrayed Billy Osgood in the comedy "It Happened to Jane" (1959), starring Dorris Day, Jack Lemmon, Ernie Kovacs and Steve Forest. He guest-starred in the family drama "Lassie" (1954–1974) and the war comedy "McHale's Navy" (1962–1966). Rooney made one appearance in THE RIFLEMAN, portraying Woody in "The Long Goodbye" (episode 119). He also guest-starred in the western "Wagon Train" (1957–1965), starring John McIntyre and Ward Bond.
Joan Taylor was an American actress born to a family in the entertainment business. Her mother, Amelia Berky, was a vaudeville dancer and singer in the 1920s. Her father operated a movie theater, which inspired in her an abiding interest in the movies from an early age. Taylor came to Hollywood in 1946 and worked on the stage at the Pasadena Playhouse for four years. Discovered by Victor Jory when she played Regina in "Another Part of the Forest," she was contracted to Paramount Studios where she appeared in several Western pictures. She guest-starred in numerous television series in the 1950s and early 60s, retiring from acting in 1962.
Taylor appeared in 18 episodes of THE RIFLEMAN between 1960 and 1962, playing Milly Scott, Owner of the General Store, which she bought from Hattie Denton. An attractive young woman who figured as a love interest for Lucas McCain, her character was introduced in "Miss Milly" (episode 84).
Bill Zuckert was an American radio, film and television actor. He appeared in more than 200 movies and television shows during a career spanning 50 years. He began working in radio, but took a break from acting to serve as a member of the Seabees Naval Construction Battalion during World War II. A veteran character actor, most of his roles were in televsion; although, he appeared in several major films, including playing the sheriff in the western "Hang 'Em High" (1968), starring Clint Eastwood and directed by THE RIFLEMAN director Ted Post; as well as a minor part in the drama "Cincinnati Kid" (1965), starring Steve McQueen; an uncredited speaking role in the blockbuster war drama "Tora! Tora! Tora!" (1970), starring So Yamamura, Jason Robards and Joseph Cotten; and an uncredited bit part in Mel Brooks' western spoof "Blazing Saddles" (1974), starring Cleavon Little, Gene Wilder and Slim Pickens. Two decades later he was still working, playing Mr. Finkle in the comedy "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective" (1994), starring Jim Carrey, and the old man in the action comedy "Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult" (1994), starring Leslie Nielsen and Priscilla Presley.
Zuckert guest-starred in many popular television shows of the 1950s through the 80s, including the crime drama "Mannix" (1967–1975), the war drama "Combat!" (1962–1967), the private detective series "77 Sunset Strip" (1958–1964), the Buck Henry spy spoof "Get Smart" (1965–1970), the medical drama "Dr. Kildare" (1961–1966), the adventure drama "The Fugitive" (1963–1967), the family comedy "My Three Sons" (1960–1972), the superhero parody "Batman" (1966–1968), the science fiction cult classic "Star Trek" (1966–1969), the western action adventure "The Wild Wild West" (1965–1969), the police drama "Mod Squad" (1968–1973), the family drama "Little House on the Prairie" (1974–1983), the anthology series "Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color" (1954–1990) and the detective drama "Columbo" (1971–2003), among scores of other shows.
Zuckert made one appearance in THE RIFLEMAN, portraying Debo Lee in "The Long Goodbye" (episode 119). He guest-starred in several other westerns, including "Cheyenne" (1955–1963), starring Clint Walker; "The Big Valley" (1965–1969), starring Barbara Stanwyck; "Death Valley Days" (1952–1975), hosted by Robert Taylor; "Gunsmoke" (1955–1975), starring James Arness; and "Bonanza" (1959–1973), starring Lorne Greene, Michael Landon, Dan Blocker and Pernell Roberts.
A local "do-gooder" seeks to revoke custody of a young boy from his grandfather because townsfolk feel the old man is incapable of providing the boy a proper home. The old man stubbornly resists, but a crisis brought on by an escaped convict draws Lucas into a gunfight and helps him solve the family problems.