tv Today NBC December 2, 2016 10:00am-11:00am EST
? ( clamoring ) i will not fight thee, jed otis. of course you won't! all you quakers is snivelin' cowards! "i do not want to fight thee." "thee is my brother." "all men is brothers." considerin' how scared you are to fight, ( men laughing ) lost his arm in antietam. bushwah! he never fought in no war! he was so scared he'd be drafted, he chewed his nails off up to his shoulder! stop it, you two! here comes the major.
well, you stay away from my girl, or i'll break off our kinship, brother. all right, get back to your wagons, folks. come on. all of you get back. no more fuss. why did thee let him make a fool of thee? why didn't thee break him in half? thee could have made two of him without trying. i don't want to make two of him, benjy. i found one of him quite enough. thee's the bravest man in the whole-- shh, shh! quiet. nothing to trouble thyself over, major adams. jed otis felt i'd done him a wrong. i heard him tell you to stay away from his girl. in the first place, i didn't know she was his girl. and second, i didn't think you'd be interested in her. he ain't. she ain't interested in him neither, 'cept to add him to her collection. she's a man-eater. runs after a fella till she's caught him and then picks his heart clean and chucks him away. thee is talking of thy own grand-daughter.
look at her. she's got him. oh, she's getting ready to jilt him. ah! when's mccullough coming with the mail? he's got to bring it from a little town called antioch about 20 miles west of here, grandma. he ought to be here by sundown. then you and me'll have a little reading session tonight, benjy, huh? if thee wishes, rebecca. there ought to be a sentinel tonight. i missed it last mail. beautiful as a peacock you're gonna have a peck of trouble with that girl. i can feel it in my bones. matthew, uh, that jed otis has done nothing but give me trouble ever since he joined this train. you just say the word, i'll give him his money back and send him on his way. no, that's not fair. anyway, my brother and i are leaving the train. no, matthew. thee heard me promise rebecca pruitt i'd read for her-- we'll go when we reach this town of antioch.
ing away, huh? what are you running away from, matthew? jed otis or marion? say rather... from myself. what does that mean, he's running away from himself? i don't know, bill. he's a strange man. he's been holding something pent up inside of him ever since he joined up with us. it's that girl, that's what it is. she's no good, just like her granny said. making sheep's eyes at every man on the train. even me. oh, charlie, she's not that desperate. i got work to do. wipe thy grim look off thy face, benjy. thee looks much handsomer smiling. matthew, why doesn't thee tell them what really happened at antietam?
ng? should i tell them that i have a temper like a fiend? when it comes over me, i lose control, go berserk, do mad, murderous things? ishat what you want me to tell them? no, not that. only enough to know that thee's a brave man. not a coward, as they think. in this one thing, i am a coward. jed otis thinks i'm afraid of his fists. he's not through with me yet. he'll try again. i'll take about as much as i can stand. then i'll run amok again. that's why we must leave this train. matthew, they forgave thee for what happened at antietam. so they did. and one day, maybe god in his mercy will forgive me too. then we'll quit running.
what do you got laid out for us for tomorrow? i don't want any of that stuff. give me some coffee. due west. got a detour around a high mesa about eight miles out, and that's about all. hey, isn't this the same route we took last year? mm-hmm. hey, that's pretty good rememberin' for a fella that's gettin' on in years. that's pretty good forgettin' for a young buck like you too. as i recall, there was a little canyon just beyond that mesa you're talking about. saved us two days' traveling time, didn't it? that's right. pretty narrow, though. some places you'd just be able to get your wagons through. and kind of reminds you of a rattlesnake that's getting ready to strike. you trying to scare me, flint, old boy? why, major, i'd as soon try and scare a tornado. i seem to remember a little stream of water going through that canyon too, huh? yeah, there's a spring in the canyon, a little one, but if you go up on the high mesa, there's all kinds of fresh water. it's only a day out. we got plenty of water to get through there. you, uh, kind of forgot about that canyon, didn't you, boy? no, i didn't forget about that canyon. i just didn't think you'd want to chance it, that's all.
look, if you'd just let me get my foot out of my mouth. thanks, charlie. oh, by the way, if you decide to fire me during the night, would you kindly not inform me until morning, because i don't want to be disturbed. i'll wake you up real soft-like with a bucket of cold water. kind of slipped up on his scouting this trip, didn't he? oh, he didn't either. just trying to keep us out of trouble, that's all. benjy, get close to the fire so we can see good. and get to the interesting part-- the death notices. it's on the back page. always on the back page. oh, wait a minute! whoa, boy, wait a minute. almost forgot. since thee can't read, rebecca, why does thee always put on my spectacles? oh, i guess it takes the sting out of my being so ignorant. go on, now.
beloved husband of margaret. samuel carter gone. tsk, tsk, tsk. i always knew i'd outlast him. why, he can't have been more than 70. a man in the prime of life. how old is thee, rebecca? a woman getting on for 90 doesn't tell her age. oh, marion's in a fret about you and matthew leaving the wagon tomorrow. how did she know? i told her. how did thee know we were going? oh, things get to me, benjy. truth is, i snooped. a body's got to know what's going on in the world or she might as well be dead. now, go on, go on. who else has departed this world of struggle and sorrow? cleveland, jesse. departed this veil of tears while he was running for office at alderman. cleveland couldn't run for anything.
unger than me. i always warned him-- spirits don't preserve everything. thee mustn't believe matthew's afraid of jed otis. such a thing never entered my mind. i watched him fighting. ah, what matthew's afeard of is his own heart. carries a secret about with him, i wouldn't wonder. and that can be bad. a secret held too long can fester till it drives a man plumb out of his mind. hmm. got a real wild temper, hasn't he? how does thee know all this, rebecca? well, i never learned to read writin', so maybe the lord gave me the gift to read the human heart. couple of months ago, it was very hot one night. i couldn't sleep, so i wandered about to cool off. as i was passing your wagon, i heard matthew let out an awful cry.
then i heard him say, "there's blood on me hands me hands is covered in blood." i peeked in the wagon, and... there you were, comforting him and crooning to him like he was a baby. ah, it was his conscience clawin' at him in his sleep. that's what made him cry out. he was remembering something awful he did once. that's his secret. rebecca, thee mustn't ever let on that thee knows. and to a quaker, that's a worse sin than it would be to any other man. oh, don't worry, benjy. i don't know nothin'. 'ceptin' that your brother matthew once had a bad dream. come on, now. who else has the grim reaper been mowin' down in sedalia? smith, charles.
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don't wait. call unitedhealthcare or go online now. ? ? there it is. you might have to pull your belly in a couple of miles up to get through, but it's the route you wanted. you need me anymore? no, i won't need you anymore, till we get through the canyon anyhow. sounds like you got something else figured out to do. what is it? a blonde or a brunette? major, you know i never mix business with pleasure. i'll meet you in antioch, all right? all right. the lights were kind of low, but it seems to me she had red hair. dark red, about the color of mud! get out of here! ( chuckles ) figure we'll make it through by dark? oh, i think so, bill. it's only about 10 miles, including the twists and turns. you go back and check on the wagons. make sure everything's tied tight on the side. right. matthew? i want to talk to you.
( complaining ) what's this about you leaving us? there's nothing that calls us to california. we have no friends or kin there. you're going because of what happened yesterday. that is the reason, isn't it? that has some bearing on it. well, it shouldn't have. i'm not jed otis's girl, in spite of what he said. i may have flirted with him a little, much as i like him. more, maybe. benjamin and i think very highly of thee, marian. well, that's just peachy. benjamin too, huh? is jed otis scaring you away? no. are you afraid of me? why, marian, if thou art an ogre, thou art a beautiful one. well, then, why leave? i just said that i liked you.
you say that i'm beautiful and then you run away. i never met a man like you before. i'm exactly like any other man, marian. but i just can't stand to see a girl-- i told you to leave her alone! how many times do i have to warn you? if you had guts enough to put up that one good arm of yours instead of hiding behind that holier-than-thou hogwash, i'd push your face in so far you'd have to back up a mile to blow your nose! now, you listen to this. stop bothering her! or i won't let that stand in my way! well, don't let it stand in thy way, jed otis. nged thee. no, matthew, no! ( horse whinnies ) rebecca: whoa! help! granny! she'll be hurt! thee almost did it again, matthew. help! you're all right, mrs. pruitt. i've got you. oh, my goodness! i might've been kilt, for all she cares. oh, now, mrs. pruitt, you just hush up. you're all right now. no harm done. "no harm done"? i was scared out of ten years' growth,
held still, granny, and not tried to drive. when i'm in the driver's seat, i drive. oh, you start after matthew, you end up with that. ( scoffs ) it's a nice come-down, eh? come on, boys. let's get to work on this thing. come on, get down in there, bill. bring those poles in there. come in on that wheel so you can grab up. get down there and put some rocks under those wheels. get that barrel off of there. the rest of you unload this wagon. both hands. come on. hold it. remember, we still have some unfinished business to take care of. i will not fight thee, jed otis. god willing, i shall never fight another man again. "again"? when did you ever fight anyone? at harvard college, he was boxing champion for two years! benjamin. a great wrestler too. we have many trophies. benjamin, i said enough. he's nothing but blubber and bluster. even now he can lick thee with one blow. i will not offend thee, jed otis.
n't have settled anything, benjamin. anyway, in another couple of hours, we'll be at the other end of the valley and away from the train. wagons, ho! hello there, wagons! anyone here? wait a minute. thank heaven you've come. we'd about given up hope of anyone coming this way. what's the matter, miss? don't come any closer. we're in terrible trouble. we need help desperately. but you may not want to help us.
the kind that sickens and kills. is there any other kind? yes. there's one that's not quite so deadly. if it's the asiatic kind, there's nothing we can do. but if it's cholera nostra, sometimes called summer cholera, which flourishes in heat like this, there might be some hope. how come you know all about this? i studied medicine for two years. i'm going over to try to help. wait a minute. you know you're taking an awful chance. major, all life is a chance.
i'm deborah parkman. my father's the wagon master-- or was, until he got sick. i suppose i'm in charge now, if you can call waiting for people to die "in charge." where do you want to start? let's start with thy father. wilst thou lead the way, please? you're a quaker? yes. if you've come here to pray for us, you may as well go back. we've tried that. everything in its place, deborah parkman. first we'll tend to the sick. then if need be, we'll pray. what's he doing over there? he's making a call. a social visit, you knot head! he's doing something that none of the rest of us had guts to do-- he's helping those people. 59, 60 seconds. i'd like to take thy temperature too, noah parkman.
i'll fetch them when i go back. this canyon is no place for folks with cholera. the humid heat prolongs and intensifies it. could not the wagons have been moved to a higher and more open place? there's a rock fall half a mile ahead at the narrowest spot blocking the trail completely. hmm. all right. wilst thou lead me to the others? i'll go back to my wagon and get my medicine case. you're not coming back here, lowry! you're not bringing cholera germs into this wagon train! just a minute, otis. i'm wagon master of this outfit. you were. i'm taking over. he went to that sick camp! he's not coming back here! why, you yellow-bellied-- disarm him!
m up! move! i'll bury you for this, otis. i'll stay on this side, jed otis, but there are some things i need from my wagon. matthew, they said thee had gone over to where there was cholera. benjy, stay right there. i want you to go back to my wagon and get my medicine case. why is thee standing off there alone? benjy, quickly. how soon can we get through? not soon. all but one are desperately ill. they can't move their wagons. you know about cholera? you've seen it before? yes, i've seen it-- at shiloh, missionary ridge, bull run, antietam. there he goes again, talking abt battles he fought. ( men laughing ) yes, i fought, jed otis. deadlier battles than those of guns. the warfare in the hospitals-- unending battles against bullet wounds, against men dying. and in the main,
well, if them battles are so tough, we don't want 'em over here. hold it, kid! you go over there, you can't come back. stay right there. put the case in the middle and i'll pick it up. i'm coming over. i belong where thee is. not this time, benjy. when the sickness lets up. when our parents died, thee said thee'd never leave me. thee's breaking thy word. still even worse than that, thee's making me cry in front of people. wipe thy nose and come over. i'm coming too. no, rebecca, not thee. and why not me? cholera is not something to be taken lightly. ain't figure on taking it lightly. ain't figuring on taking it at all. now, you listen to me. i've been through three husbands and brung up 11 children. i'm reaching 90. i may be past it, but i'm not telling.
and i've had my grand-daughter on me hands ever since me son died, and she ain't broke my spirit. i ain't gonna be broken by a little bit of cholera. now, come on. what is there to be done? a great deal. thank you. no great change in anyone. the heat is draining them of their strength. this is almost the last of the water, matthew. if the water hole runs dry, i don't know what we're gonna do. deborah, look on top of that cliff. up there there's always a breeze. if we could get them up there, they'd regain their health in no time. can't we?
who would move them? rebecca? thee? benjamin? i? there's no trail to take the wagons up either. why don't you pray for the wagons to be given wings? winged wagons. that's very poetic. i like that. thee has a streak of poetry in thee, deborah. poetry will not cure sick people. i wouldn't be too sure about that. look at the night bird spreading its wings to the moon. wings. they say faith can move mountains. why not wagons? well, why not? what are you talking about? a rope is a wing, if need be. so is a pulley and a hoist. it could work. and the idea came from thee. as have many other things to heal and comfort me. deborah, i have not felt such peace of mind in many years.
i've seen her before, often, looking across at us. who is she? it's rebecca's grand-daughter. she's probably concerned about her grandmother's welfare. she could call across and ask. she's never here when rebecca is. i don't know what she wants. you, uh... you had some plan, matthew. yes. yes. has thee a knife? a sharp one? what do you want it for? i'll need it to do as thee suggested--
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eve you cared for me. so anything you do is my business. you get one thing into that empty little head of yours-- anybody goes across to that cholera camp and tries to come back here, i shoot! can i talk to you a minute, jed? be right with you. anybody at all. talk to me about what? is train? get out of here as soon as we can move. when'll that be? as soon as they move their wagons, or as soon as they die off and we can plow right through 'em. that's not good enough, jed otis. in the meantime, you're doling out our water. it's almost gone. food ain't holdin' out too good either. uh-uh. you got to give us a quicker plan than just waitin'. then we get tough with them, sick and all. give 'em till tomorrow to get their wagons out of the way. man: and if they won't or can't?
fire oughta get 'em to move. isn't thee finished with the boiling yet? they all ask for water. i think it's ready. help me take it off the fire. we'd better put it over here to cool. matthew says that if the heat would let up, they'd get well. ppen, she says. what's... what's rebecca's grand-daughter like? marian? she makes goo-goo eyes at all the men folk, and some of them make goo-goo back. does thee remember reading about the witch circe? the one who turned men into beasts? by a magic charm. well, marian's like her, sort of. she sure made a beast out of jed otis,
though i think he must have affectionate feelings for thee. i've heard him whisper thy name in his sleep, very tenderly. bring some water to the kelly wagon when it cools. you shouldn't be here. are you afraid i'll charm him away from you? your wagon master said no one's to cross the line. so the high and mighty matthew lowry finally found someone he can condescend to love. he's far from high and mighty. he's humble and modest. and i'm not good enough for him? i don't know what you are, and i don't know what you're doing here. if you've come to make trouble, we have enough--
to find out what matthew's taste was like. now i see. ( scoffs ) he likes them haggard and washed-out looking. where is he? he went across to... i mean, he... to our side? well, now i can go back and tell jed otis that we have a visitor. no, don't, please. they'll kill him over there. so you do love him. a nobility i've never seen before. he's renewed my faith in human beings and he's given god back to me. thank you for making it clear to me, marian. yes, i do love him. seth: you ought to be real proud of yourself, blane gunderson, keeping us tied up here, lettin' that maniac run the outfit. i hear he's run it into the ground too, huh?
only... i'm more scared of getting the cholera than i am ashamed of what i'm doing to you. matthew! you got a knife? i have. thy help and guidance are needed, seth adams. jed otis threatens to set fire to the parkman train. water is running low in both camps. one of the canyon walls has collapsed, blocking the trail completely. now, can the wagons be made to fly to the top of the cliff? you mean, can we lift these wagons over that cliff? why, sure. we did it the first trip out. we ran into a landslide in the rockies. we lifted up the whole train. come on. we've got work to do. what about this fella here?
'em out seems kind of cruel. lot of sick folk. you asked me to make a plan. this is it. we warn 'em, give 'em time to get the sick out. if they don't do it, we... wait a minute. what are you doing over there, marian? i just came over to-- to see your sweetheart who don't want any part of you? i told you anyone who goes over there stays! no, jed, i can't stay here. they don't want me! i told you i'd shoot anyone who tries to come back here. you'd shoot me, jed? ( trigger clicks ) i'm marian, the girl you love! i'm coming back to you. i don't want you back. you made your choice! stick to it! jed, this is marion-- ( screaming )
( groaning ) lord willing, she'll be all right. oh, thank god! there's the man that you people picked for a leader-- a mad dog. what in god's name has come over you? you used to be brave people. you fought off indian attack time after time. d miles and miles of hot, waterless desert. and now you come up against a sickness, you let this murderous bully make cowards out of you. well, i've got some news for all of you. up ahead there's been a rockslide. the whole canyon's caved in. that's why these people got stuck here till the cholera hit 'em. i'm glad this thing has come to a head finally, because the only way you can help yourselves
( groans ) that's not a very good joke, is it? medium. didst thee think it up, benjamin? i'm afraid so. anyway, they're all so excited, they're forgetting their aches. which is good news, isn't it? couldn't be better. i thought thee'd be pleased to hear it. the riley baby is clamoring for more food, so i'm going now to milk one of the cows. does thee know how? what's to know? one pulls the under hanging equipment, and the cow does the rest. it's really quite simple. well, what's the trouble, deborah? tonight thee should be very happy. benjamin tells me that you and he are e going toeave us at some nearby town. yes, that's the plan. but you fought a great battle here against death, and you've won it. why do you want to leave the scene of your victory now? because of another battle that i've fought and lost.
you see, i quit college and joined the medical corps. would've been less trying if i'd have been a soldier. certainly less bloody. deborah, don't let anyone ever tell thee that god created hell-- he dididt. it was man's own invention. i know, because i constructed an annex to hell. i killed a man. how? i have a temper. it happened at antieiem. all that long and bloody day, they brought in the wounded. there was one soldier, a johnny reb. he'd been lying neglected on the battlefield from the night before. they brought him i io the surgeons' tent where i was. his right leg had gangrened. it was wounded. it had to come off. but they wouldn't touch him. they said that he was the enemy. union sosoiers first.
"the enemy." since when do dying men have a nation? so i operated. and while i was doing my work, a big lout, who called himself a surgeon, tried to take the scalpel from me. he was drunk. as we struggled in that tent, the dying around us, my scalpel fell, and then i hit him in the face with hatred in my heart, and he fell ononhat scalpel. pierced his lungs and he died. and the johnny reb? that's the irony of this whololstory. you see, i tried to save a man who couldn't be saved. he'd lost too much blood. i killed one man for a man who was already dead. god punished me.
now, madam cow, if thee will be patient, please, and submit. since it's'sor a good cause, i'll be happy if thee will help me. madam, thee's not being very cooperative. we've done about all we can do tonight. we'll start again in the morning daylight. how do you sick people feel about flying? happy as larks, major, to coin a phrase. by the way, benjamin and i are gonna stay with the train. oh, i'm glad. i'd hate to lose youou
to stay while we give the signal. all right. bring that next wagon down her and get her ready to roll up. how dodo one thank thee, major adams? one waits till the job is done, matthew. how's benjamin? his head aches, but hehel be fine. we're all set! get back. there may be rocks coming down here. all right, take it away, bill! take it away! come on, heave!
about 10 more feet! whoa! that's good right there. slack off on the block. untie that line. that's the last one, bill. wooster's coming up with the stock the back way. get him his stuff as soon as he gets here, will you? right. well, sir, we've got everything but water now. how about the sick folks? are they ready to travel? look at them. they're recovering to the point where they're becoming nuisances. ne. bill, get all the wagons loaded as soon as you can. i want to move a asoon as the stock gets here. yo! there should be some papers for thee at the next camp. i'll read to thee if t te wishes. but not the death notices anymore. they scare me now.
i'd have been all alone in the world. well, she's getting better, thank heheen. with matthew about to marry deborah, i'll b bsort of alone too. will thee be my girl, rebecca? ( chuckles ) now i'm in me second childhood, you're getting a bit old for me. then i always did like you older fellas. i'll have to get back to our wagon soon. father isn't strong enough to drive for long. oh, he's well. they're all well. where will thee marry me, deborah? in antioio? or must i wait till we get to california? is antioch closer? you know something? ever since matthew and deborah gogotogether, marian's been kinda, well, so to speak... you might even say... might even say what? what are you trying to tell me? go on.