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The Fourflusher
Episode 72
Writer: Thomas Thompson
Director: Joseph H. Lewis
Original Air Date 05/03/1960


Chuck Connors as Lucas McCain

Johnny Crawford as Mark McCain

Paul Fix as Marshal Micah Torrance

Guest Cast
Whit Bissell as Gabe

Whit Bissell, born Whitner Nutting Bissell, was a prolific American television and film actor who made his acting debut on Broadway.  He appeared in nearly 300 television shows and movies in a career spanning more than 40 years.  Although he appeared in several cult horror films of the 1950s, including the classic sci-fi thriller, "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" (1956), he is probably best-known for portraying the mad scientist who turned Michael Landon into a beast in "I Was a Teenage Werewolf" (1957).  Bissell appeared in numerous TV shows of every genre popular in the 1950s through the early 80s, including "Peyton Place" (1965), "Perry Mason" (1957–1966), "Marcus Welby, M.D." (1970–1973), "The Incredible Hulk" (1979–1980), and many western series, including "The Lone Ranger" (1947–1959), "The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp" (1955–1961), "Have Gun – Will Travel" (1957–1963), "Wagon Train" (1958–1964), "Bonanza" (1959–1973) and "The Virginian" (1963–1964).  Bissell also had recurring roles as Bert Loomis in the comedy series, "Bachelor Father" (1957–1962), and Lt. Gen. Heywood Kirk in the sci-fi series, "The Time Tunnel" (1966–1967).

Bissell made four appearances in THE RIFLEMAN, portraying Sam Barrows in "The Patsy" (episode 41), Gabe Fenway in "The Flourflusher" (episode 72), Volney Adams in "The Hangman" (episode 76) and Henry Waller in "The Long Gun from Tucson" (episode 121).  In 1994, Bissell received a lifetime achievement award from the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films.  He also served on the board of directors of the Screen Actors Guild and represented the actors branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences board of governors.

Ian Murray as Harley Hannabury
Ian Murray as Harley Hannabury

Ian Murray made appearances in seven episodes of THE RIFLEMAN, playing the recurring character of Harley Hannabury in six, including "The Challenge" (episode 28), "Blood Brothers" (episode 35), "Obituary" (episode 44), "The Fourflusher" (episode 72), "Meeting at Midnight" (credited as "Old Man")(episode 74), and "The Illustrator" (episode 88).  He played a Townsman in "The Hangman" (episode 76).

K. T. Stevens as Molly Fenway

K. T. Stevens was an American actress whose career in films and television spanned 70 years.  She debuted in her first film role at age two in a silent film classic directed by her father, Sam Wood, in "Peck's Bad Boy" (1921), which starred Jackie Coogan.  Stevens also worked on the stage and in radio, eventually retiring from acting, but later returning to the screen as a character actress, primarily in television.  She appeared five episodes of THE RIFLEMAN, portraying Muriel Chase in "Heller" (episode 62), Molly Fenway in "The Fourflusher" (episode 72), Nancy Clay in "Face of Yesterday" (episode 95), Emma Lincoln in "Honest Abe" (episode 118), and Granny Mede in "End of the Hunt" (episode 162).

Hope Summers as Hattie Denton, Owner of the General Store
Hope Summers as Hattie Denton, Owner of the Genera

Hope Summers was an American actress of the stage, radio, film and television.  Her acting career began in the 1930's, when she worked primarily in community and stock theater and radio.  Her career was most active in the 1950's and 1960's, when she appeared in numerous films and television shows.   Her film credits include "Zero Hour!" (1957), "Inherit the Wind" (1960), "Spencer's Mountain" (1963), "The Hallelujah Trail" (1965), "The Ghost and Mr. Chicken" (1966), "The Shakiest Gun in the West" (1968), "Rosemary's Baby" (1968), "Charley Varrick" (1973) and her last movie, "Foul Play" (1978).

Summers began working in television in the 1950's, guest-starring in a wide variety of genres, but especially Westerns.  Her television credits include "The Loretta Young Show" (1956–1959), "Maverick" (1957) and "Wagon Train" (1957), "Gunsmoke" (1958–1963), "Dennis the Menace" (1959), "Petticoat Junction" (1963) and "The Phyllis Diller Show" (1966).  She played numerous memorable recurring roles in many hit television series, including "Hawkins Falls: A Television Novel" (1950).  Her best-known role was Clara Edwards, Aunt Bee's gossipy neighbor, in "The Andy Griffith Show" (1960-1968) and its spin-off, "Mayberry R.F.D." (1968–1971).  Summers appeared in 16 episodes of THE RIFLEMAN as Hattie Denton, owner of the General Store.  Hattie was first introduced in "Eight Hours to Die" (episode 6).  Her last regular television role was playing Olive in "Another Day" (1978).

James Westerfield as Jake Preston

James Westerfield was a prolific American character actor of stage, film and television, as well as a director and producer.  His first love was the stage, and he produced and directed several plays on the summer theater circuit.  He appeared in more than 150 movies and television shows during his 35-year career.  Typecast as a heavy, Westerfield received two New York Drama Critics awards.  Although many of his film roles were uncredited, he appeared in many iconic films, often playing memorable characters, including the traffic cop in the Orson Welles adaptation of Booth Tarkington's "The Magnificent Ambersons" (1942), starring Joseph Cotton, Dolores Costello and Anne Baxter and the biographical drama "The Pride of the Yankees" (1942), starring Gary Cooper; Henry Gilson in the noir film "Undercurrent" (1946), starring Katharine Hepburn, Robert Taylor and Robert Mitchum; Officer Hanson in the Disney comedy "The Shaggy Dog" (1959), starring Fred MacMurray, a role that he reprised in the Disney films "The Absent-Minded Professor" (1961) and "Son of Flubber" (1963), both starring Fred MacMurray; Jess Younger in the biographical drama "Birdman of Alcatraz" (1962), starring Burt Lancaster; a prisoner in the action film "Hang 'Em High" (1968), starring Clint Eastwood; and Judge Parker in the western "True Grit" (1969), starring John Wayne and Kim Darby.  Westerfield is best-remembered for his portrayal of Big Mac in Elia Kazan's award-winning crime drama "On the Waterfront" (1954), starring Marlon Brando, Karl Malden, Rod Steiger and Eva Marie Saint.

Westerfield guest-starred in many popular television shows of the 1950s through the 70s, including the crime dramas "Richard Diamond: Private Detective" (1957–1960) and "Mannix" (1967–1975), the suspense series "Alfred Hitchcock Presents" (1955–1962), Rod Serling's anthology series "The Twilight Zone" (1959–1964), the family comedy "My Three Sons" (1960–1972), the western action adventure "The Wild Wild West" (1965–1969), the long-running family drama "Lassie" (1954–1974), and the fantasy comedy "Bewitched" (1964–1972).  He also had recurring roles playing John Murrel in the western "The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters" (1963–1964), starring Dan O'Herlihy and Kurt Russell, and the character Mr. Turner in the comedy "Hazel" (1961–1966), starring Shirley Booth.  Westerfield made two appearances in THE RIFLEMAN, portraying Pa Healey in "The Woman" (episode 32) and Jake Preston in "The Fourflusher" (episode 72).  He guest-starred in many other westerns, including "The Lone Ranger" (1949–1957), "Zane Grey Theater" (1956–1961), "Wagon Train" (1957–1965), "The Texan" (1958–1960), "Bat Masterson" (1958–1961), "Wanted: Dead or Alive" (1958–1961), "The Deputy" (1959–1961), "Laramie" (1959–1963), "Maverick" (1957–1962), "Tales of Wells Fargo" (1957–1962), "Rawhide" (1959–1966), "Daniel Boone" (1964–1970), "The Virginian" (1962–1971), "Gunsmoke" (1955–1975), and "Bonanza" (1959–1973).

Gabe, a neighbor of the McCains, has bet his whole year's farm crop on the outcome of the big North Fork horse race.  Gabe has trained and groomed his own horse and is confident he will win.  Lucas and Mark become involved when Mark decides to enter his horse in the race, too, and they learn that Gabe's landlord will stop at nothing to keep Gabe from winning the race and the big bet that goes with it.