dark star
Bonanza Western TV
The Lone Writer  

Dark Star Full Episode – Bonanza, Season #01, Episode #31

Millions of viewers and avid Western fans followed the adventures of the Cartwright family in Bonanza. Anthony Lawrance wrote Bonanza’s thirty-first episode of its first season, Dark Star, which aired on April 23, 1960. Hugo Haas, a cult movie director, plays Zurka, the chief, alongside Arthur Batanides as Spiro and Lily Valenty as Bruja.

Gypsy girl Tirza (Susan Harrison) has been sentenced to death by her tribe, who thought she was a witch. Tirza seeks refuge on the Ponderosa and falls in love with Joe Cartwright, who is determined to disprove the claims people have of her.

Watch the full episode, or read the storyline and other exciting trivia below.

Watch the Full Episode of Dark Star

Watch the Full Episode of Dark Star:

Main Cast

Dark Star, the thirty-first episode of Bonanza, features a few of the show’s recurring and supporting cast members. The following actors are in this episode:

  • Dan Blocker as Eric ‘Hoss’ Cartwright
  • Michael Landon as Joseph ‘Little Joe’ Cartwright
  • Lorne Greene as Ben Cartwright
  • Pernell Roberts as Adam Cartwright
  • Susan Harrison as Tirza
  • Hugo Haas as Zurka
  • Arthur Batanides as Spiro
  • Lili Valenty as Bruja
  • Argentina Brunetti as Bruja’s Helper
  • Grandon Rhodes as Dr. J.P. Martin
  • Jack Tornek as Gypsy (uncredited)

Full Story Line for Dark Star

Little Joe and Hoss split up to search for a timber wolf they heard howling from a distance. Just then, Joe finds a track he followed, revealing a lady lying on the ground. He tries to approach the woman, but she gets up and runs from him, then stumbles down a hill where she falls unconscious. Hoss rejoins Joe, and they take the lady, who seems to be a Gypsy, back to their ranch house.

The doctor advises the Cartwrights to leave the lady the lady to sleep before sending to her home. Since the Cartwrights don’t know where her people are, the doctor suggests turning her over to the sheriff in Virginia City. Joe objects, saying the lady didn’t do anything wrong, but the doctor believes she will since she’s a Gypsy.

Joe goes to the room where the Gypsy rests, but she tells him to leave. She removes the blanket, but Joe brings it back since it’s cold for her. However, instead of being thankful, she bites his hand, forcing him to leave the room.

Later that night, Joe hears the front door open and sees the Gypsy standing outside. He joins her. However, she won’t even turn to look at him, as she has her focus on the night sky. Joe asks about her family, but she declares she has no one. The Gypsy asks if Joe cares about her because she is pretty, to which Joe responds that he feels responsible for her since he brought her to the ranch. The lady also says he’s pretending to be a grown-up man, then describes herself as withered and dead. Her words made Joe declares her the craziest girl he has met, but the Gypsy tells him to go away before she turns him into a toad.

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The next day, Ben finds the Gypsy feasting on the crumbs on the dining room table. He offers her to have a decent breakfast, but she merely comments that he is a rich man. He acknowledges that he’s thankful for many things and then asks about her people, wishing to return her to them. However, she says they did not lose her because she is different from them. She hopes to be free.

At that moment, the Gypsy pulls the tablecloth from the table, breaking the items above it, then bolts out the door while shrieking. Her erratic behavior spooks Hoss and Joe’s horses. She stumbles, and Joe follows her. The lady grabbed his gun to try to shoot herself, but Joe stopped her, pinning her down while asking why she wanted to kill herself. She responds by saying she’s a witch, then alludes to “the dark star.”

Later, a group of gypsies arrives at the Ponderosa. Hoss thinks they are setting camp at the ranch, but Ben believes they came to pick up the lady. Ben tries to take her to the gypsies, but she refuses to go, leaving Ben and Hoss to see the gypsies themselves.

Zurka wishes to set their camp on the Ponderosa until the poor weather clears. Ben assumes they also came to pick up the girl, but Zurka avoids the subject, claiming she’s no longer one of them as she brings misfortune. He then accuses him of leaving her to die, but Zurka clarifies that they just left her behind. Ben makes an offer: they can stay on the Ponderosa if they take the Gypsy lady. Seeing they can’t do anything else, Zurka agrees and then diverts the topic to something else. He uses the chance to sell Ben some horses, but Ben, who has a keen eye on horses, notices that the horses are old and sickly, fixed up to look younger. This remark angers one Gypsy, later introduced as Spiro. However, Zurka changes the topic again by inviting them to dinner to celebrate All Hallow’s Eve. Ben tries to refuse, but Zorka firmly insists, informing Ben to bring a pig for the feast. Ben refuses, reminding them to leave when the weather clears and take the lady with them.

Joe finds the lady by a stream of water, digging at the ground with her hands. There, she finally revealed her name as Tirza. Although appearing friendlier toward Joe, Tirza begins talking oddly once again, which reminds Joe about “the dark star” Tirza mentioned earlier, including her attempt to kill herself. After some more speech about wishing to be a fish (which appears to be her cryptic method of revealing her desire to be accepted by her people for who she is), Tirza merely responds by saying she’s a witch.

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Assuming he’s among Tirza’s people, Joe welcomes Spiro when he arrives on a horse. However, Spiro sternly tells him to run his kingdom and leave them alone. Spiro apologizes to Tirza, saying that he would have made sure she wasn’t left behind if he had known. She rejects him, stating he would have only done so if she agreed to be with him and would rather lie with a snake. Unfazed, Spiro forcibly attempts to kiss her, and at some point, Tirza scratches his face to stop him. Joe intervenes to rescue her. After a short brawl, Spiro pulls a knife while Joe draws his gun, leaving Spiro to drop his weapon. Before leaving, Spiro warns Joe, saying his face will be the last one he’ll see in this world.

Hoss arrives by dinner, reporting a missing pig. Ben plans to have Zurka pay for the pig since he knows Zurka intended for him to provide one in some manner. Hoss and Joe believe watching Ben work out with Zurka will be fun, so they tag along, while Adam decides to stay home to guard the house in case the gypsies arrive in a wagon and leave with all their furniture.

Initially denying that he took the pig, Zurka later confesses and offers to pay for the animal with a bowl made from pure silver. Ben declines his trade but ultimately accepts the offer to stay and eat with the gypsies. While eating, Ben brings up the topic of Tirza and why they think she is a witch. Zurka reveals she was born under a dark star and can turn herself into a wolf.

Tirza unexpectedly arrives and starts dancing to the tune played by the gypsies, captivating Joe and Spiro. However, lightning suddenly flashes, and the gypsies are afraid, believing Tirza’s behind it. Tirza runs off with Joe, and Spiro discretely follows them with a rifle. Zurka tells Ben to go after Joe, but Ben trusts that Joe can take care of himself.

Little Joe accompanies Tirza with a big rock, praising how she runs faster than a deer. He asked why she came to camp to dance that way, to which she explained that she likes to see the fear on their faces. Tirza tells him they live in different worlds, but Joe assures her she’s not the witch they believe her to be. She responds, calling Joe a tree with roots dug deep into the ground and saying she wants to be a tree to protect little children from harm. Tirza later asks Joe if she thinks she’s beautiful, to which he answers with a kiss. Spiro watches as the two, ready to shoot with his rifle, leave when a wolf howls from the area.

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That night, Tirza wakes up to find an open window, chicken feathers all over the place, and bloody wolf paw prints on her bed. Horrified of the threat she brings, she rushes to Zurka and pleads for his help. He informs her it will be painful and unbearable, but Tirza doesn’t care, fueled by the determination to be like others, even if it means her death.

When Tirza hurried outside, she forgot to close the door, so the noise it made upon banging open and shut woke Joe. He checks the door, discovering the chicken feathers and blood in Tirza’s room. He goes to the gypsy camp and sees Spiro, who informs him that Tirza turned herself into a wolf and slaughtered chickens. He also tells Joe that the gypsies will perform a ceremony, like an exorcism, to help her eliminate the evil. Joe begins to walk away, but Spiro stops him with a whip. When Joe tries to reach for his gun, Spiro whips it out of his grasp, causing them to fight. When Joe gains the upper hand, Spiro pulls his knife and tries to stab him, only ending up stabbing himself and dying shortly after.

Joe arrives at the ceremonial ground, but two gypsies stop him as they perform the rite, forcing him to watch as the events unfold. When the ceremony reaches its climax, Tirza becomes calm, so they release Joe. Tirza declares that she is now free, and Joe takes her back to the Ponderosa.

At breakfast, Joe subtly tells Ben he wants to marry Tirza. Ben agrees, pleased with Joe’s decision, but Zurka shows up and states the weather has cleared, so he has come to pick up the girl, whom his people now accept as their own. Joe tells him that Tirza will stay with him, but Tirza awakened from her sleep, has chosen to go with the gypsies. She reminds him that she’s like the fish in the stream, who can finally swim with her people after waiting so long to see love in their eyes rather than fear and hate. Little Joe begs her to stay, but Tirza tells him their difference: Joe’s a tree that needs to stay to protect his home while she’s a fish. Tirza leaves, promising to remember Little Joe always and asking him to remember her when the stars are in the skies. Zurka apologizes to Ben about Spiro, stating that he should have recognized the devil in him earlier instead of Tirza. They had discovered the wolf’s paw on Spiro’s body, still wet with blood, implying that he killed the chickens.

Ben comforts Little Joe while watching Tirza leave the ranch with the gypsies.

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Full Script and Dialogue of Dark Star

Oh, I don't see
any sign of tracks.
Not a sign.
Look, why don't we split
up, meet up by that rimrock?
All right. Be mighty
careful, Little Joe.
If we get that o"
timber wolf all boxed in,
he ain't gonna be
at all sociable. Right.
Hey, wait a minute!
Hey, wait a minute!
Little Joe, where are you?!
Down here, Hoss!
Hey, Joe, that ain't no lobo.
Sure ain't.
Well, what is
she, an Indian girl?
No, looks like a Gypsy to me.
Hey, I ain't never seen
one of them up close before.
I almost killed her.
I thought she was that wolf.
Gypsy girl.
Well, we were
aware of that, Doctor.
Is she going to be all right?
Can't hurt a Gypsy.

They're built to endure.

I don't know, Doc.

She looked like she was
pretty well shook up to me.

Oh, she'll come
out of it all right.

Just give her a day in bed,

and then send her on her way.

Yeah, well, where's that?

Wherever her people are.

Well, we don't exactly know
where her people are, Doctor.


Well, soon as she's
on her feet, you'd best

turn her over to the
sheriff in Virginia City.

What for? She
didn't do anything.

She will, boy; she will.

Just give her a chance.

She's a Gypsy, isn't she?

Is that as bad as
being an Injun?

Sometimes it's worse.

Evening, Ben, Little Joe, Hoss.

Good night, Doc.
Good night, Doc.

Good night, Doc.

He doesn't care much
for Gypsies, does he?

I guess a lot of people
don't trust them much.

A lot of people don't trust
no tumbleweed folk much.

Oh, I don't think
that little girl

can do much harm
while she's here with us.

Maybe when she wakes up,

we can find out
where her people are.

She sure is pretty,
ain't she, Little Joe?

She sure is; like
nothing I've ever seen.

Sounds like she's waking up.

Better take a look at her.
No, I'll, I'll check her, Pa.

Hey, Pa?

How come Adam didn't
come back with the doctor?

Oh, he's staying
in town overnight.

Go away.

I won't hurt you.

Where is this place?

It's the Ponderosa. Nevada.

How's your head?

Go away.

It's cold.

It's cold, and I think that you

ought to keep the
cover over you.


Hey, what'd you do that for?

All right, you just go ahead
and freeze, if you want to.


How is she?

If Gypsies are supposed
to be mean, she's doing fine.

What'd you do to your hand?

She bit me.

She bit you? Uh-huh.

Listen, Little Joe,

if a Gypsy's bite's
anything like a polecat's,

you're in trouble.

If you start foaming at
the mouth... Yeah, I know.

Drink plenty of Jamaica ginger.

Why did she bite you?

I don't know.

Hmm. Say anything
about her folks?

What happened
to her? No, nothing.

I'll talk to the girl
in the morning.

I wouldn't get too close to her.

You see that star?

Yeah, that's the North Star.

I would like to reach up
and pluck it out of the sky.

Oh, it's a long ways up.

No, it's so close I can
feel the cold on my face.

Oh, maybe you
better get back in bed.

The night is the
inside of a black bell.

It rings forth the
spirits of the dead.

Don't worry.

It's just that lobo wolf
we've been trying to catch.

Go away.

And will you bite
me again if I don't?

Where are the
folks you belong to?

I have no one.

Oh, now, come on,
everybody has someone.

Why do you care about me?

Is it because I am pretty
and you want to kiss me?

Come and do it.

I am waiting for you.

Now, look, I don't know
what's bothering you,

but I brought you here and
I feel responsible for you.

Now, I want to find out
where you belong and that's all.

You are walking in
your father's shoes.

And what does that mean?

You're playing
like you are a man,

but you are a little boy.

Oh, and what makes
you so grown-up?

I am past being grown-up.

I am old and withered.

I am dead.

And I don't know what
you're talking about.

You're the craziest
girl I ever ran into.

Go away before I
turn you into a toad.

You don't have to eat
crumbs, young lady.

Have a decent
breakfast, if you want it.

I don't need your food.

Well, you're welcome
to it if you should need it.

My name is Ben Cartwright.

You are a rich
man, Ben Cartwright.

Well, I...

I do have much
to be grateful for.

I would have to steal
to have so much.

Well, there are other ways.

Tell me, what were you
doing out there all alone?

Howling at the moon.

Well, I suppose
that is respectable

for young wolves, but
not for young ladies.

Where are your people?

Why do you want to know?

Would you invite
them to eat with you?

Well, I want to know,

so that I can return
a young girl to them.

I think they've lost one.

They did not lose me.

I am not like them.

I'm different.

Well, how?

What makes you different?

There is no one in front of me,

and no one in back.

I may go anywhere I want to go,

and be whatever I wish to be.

Well, what is it
that you wish to be?

I wish to be free.

I do not like your house.

What's wrong?

Go away. What's the matter?

Hey, give me that.

Let me go!

Not till I find out
what's going through

that crazy head of yours.

Why do you try to kill yourself?

I am gafe.

I am a witch.

The animals, they know it.

If you mean those horses, it
was your dress that spooked them.

They're not used to
bright colors, nothing else.

No. It is the dark star.

It is the dark star!

Lookie there, Pa;
it looks like them

Gypsies are gonna make camp
right here on the Ponderosa.

No, they probably come
to pick up our young friend.

How'd they know she was here?

Oh, Doctor.

I imagine it's all over
Virginia City by now.

They did not come for me.

Now, look, young lady, I
don't know what problems

you may have had
with your people before,

but don't you think it's time
to straighten them out now?

You do not understand.

No... I guess
you're right; I don't.

I have three sons
and no daughters.

I've always found women

a mite harder to
understand than men.

They're more sensitive and...

Now, look, I'll, uh...

I'll forget about those dishes
if you'll come along now

and give things another try. No.

Well, those are your people.

You belong with them.


Well, all right.

If Muhammad won't
go to the mountain...

Zurka... we have visitors.

Oh, welcome, friends!

I, Zurka, welcome you.

I should be welcoming you.

My name is Ben Cartwright.

My son Hoss.

This is the Ponderosa,
Cartwright land.

If you don't mind my asking,

how did you get
through our fence line?

Oh, it is in need of repair.

Fences are always
in need of repair.

I presume you came
to pick up the girl.

The girl?

Yes, we, uh, found her
half-dead in the timber country.

Gypsy girl.

You are barosan... my brother.

You're a great
man, I can see it.

I am sure that you
will let my people stay

on your beautiful land
until the dark sky clears.

We are heading
across the mountains

to the place where
the mustangs run wild.

What about the girl?

She's no longer one of us.

She's gafe, a
bringer of misfortune.

She's a child.

Oh, the devil is
fond of children.

You mean to... you mean to say

that that poor little girl...

you think she's bewitched?

We know it, barosan.

You left her here to die.

We left her behind us.

She's a human being.

She's not an animal.

Now, we have
laws in this country

governing responsibility.

We stay away from the law,
and the law stays away from us.

Maybe you won't be
able to do that this time.

Well, I... I'll think
it over, barosan.

You will let us stay, huh?

On one condition.

That you take the girl and
go when the weather clears.

I can promise
you that we will go.

All right. But now,
barosan, when we are here,

maybe we can do some business.

We have fine horses to sell.

Well, we buy our
horses in Virginia City.

But none like the
beasts of Roman!

Huh, Spiro?

Backs like iron,
hoofs like the wind.

Well, Pa, it can't do no
harm to take a look at 'em.


What do you want
for the stallions?

$150 apiece.

How much?

For both.

All three?

No... They aren't
worth half that.

Oh, you're a hard man
to deal with, barosan.

No, not usually.

These horses have been fixed.

Oh, the Indians have been
known to use similar methods.

Teeth have bored and filled

with birchwood
to hide their age.

This one's leg's been blistered
on this side to balance up

with that lame one on
the other one, too, Pa.

Touch of arsenic in their feed?

You insult us!

I was right.

You're a great man, barosan,
with an eye of a Gypsy.

I like you.

My wife will tell your
fortune for nothing.

I'm afraid not.

No, no, but, but we will talk.

You will tell me your life
and I will tell you my life.

Another time.

No, no, no, tonight.

Tonight is All Hallows' Eve.

It's a big celebration.

We'll have a roast pig

and we will dance and drink
kümmel... a lot of kümmel.

You will join us.

I'm afraid not.

But you must come.

You must bring the pig.

Uh, you do have a pig, huh?

Yes, we have a pig.

So bring the pig
and you are welcome.

Well, I'm afraid
we're saving our pig

for a little celebration
of our own.

Well... so don't bring the
pig and you are welcome, too.

Thanks anyway.

Enjoy yourselves.

And remember what
I said about the girl.

I expect you to come for her.

And stay in good
health... barosan.


You know, I still
don't know your name.


Why do they call you Little Joe?

Ah, it's just a nickname.

It doesn't mean anything.

The venom of spiders protects us

from wild animals
and savage dogs.

A Colt .45'll do the same thing.

It will not rain tonight.

Tirza, what did you
mean about the dark star...

being a witch?

When I was a little girl, I
sat by a stream like this.

I watched the fish and
dreamed that I was one of them,

slipping through
the warm silence,

my silver scales
reflecting sunlight.

Yeah, when I was a kid, I
used to want to be a grizzly.

I can be a fish if I want.

What are you doing?

Digging for wild artichokes.

The gophers store
them, and I am hungry.

You're sure a funny girl.

Why did you stop me?



Why'd you try to kill yourself?

For the same reason I bit you.

Why is that?

Because I am a witch.

Are you strong, Tirza?

Yes, strong and well.

I'm Joe Cartwright.

Go away, gajo, back
to your own kind.

Go watch over your kingdom.

Leave us alone.

If Tirza wants me
to leave, then I will.

What do you want, Spiro?

To see that you are happy.

I did not know they left you
behind until it was too late.

It was the old woman's work.

And if you had known?

What then?

I might have changed her mind.

The bruja is my grandmother.

I can influence her.

A glass of metaxa,
a laugh or two...

She would listen to me.

And all you would want
for that service is to hold me

in your arms for all the
nights that are to come.

Maybe not all.

I would rather lie in
the arms of a snake.

Drop it.

I said drop it.

All right, get on your
horse and clear out.

Remember my face, gajo.

It'll be the last one
you see in this world.

Not only do they
think she's bewitched,

she thinks so, too.

Sounds like they've
been driving it home

hard enough to her
to make her believe it.

Hmm. Where is she now?

She's asleep.

She's quite a girl, though.

Isn't she, Joe?

Yeah, Pa.

Adam, you don't think

there'll be anything
worthwhile at the auction?

No, I didn't like the
looks of those mustangs.

Kind of runty.

I understand the, uh,
Gypsies tried to peddle

some of their broken down
geldings that they'd fixed up.


Did quite a good job, too.

You know, the
average buyer probably

wouldn't notice the
difference for quite some time.

Well, they'd have to go
some to outfox you, Pa.

Hey, Pa.

One of our little Poland
China pigs is plumb gone.


Seems I was supposed to
supply a pig, one way or another.

Yeah, and it looks like
you did get outfoxed.

No, I didn't, because they're going
to pay for that pig, one way or another.

I don't know, Pa,
that old Gypsy, Zurka,

he could charm his way
out of a Comanche scalpin'.

He's not going to charm his
way out of paying for that pig.

Well, this I gotta see.

Yeah, me, too.

How about you, Adam?

Come on along.

No, I think I'd better
keep an eye on the house

in case they, uh, back
in one of the wagons

and take out the furniture.


Is a pleasure to have
you here, barosan.

I'm sorry to barge in like this,

but I have the strange feeling
that that pig belongs to me.

Does it?

I don't know.

I-I-I really don't
know, barosan.

It wandered here into
the camp, poor lost soul.

Uh, do you think it is yours?

Now, Zurka, you know it is.

That's a very expensive animal.

Oh, I'm very sorry, barosan.

I... I don't know
how to repay you.

I have only a few dollars.

But maybe you would
consider a barter?


Barosan, it is not much,

but it is pure silver

and carved with...
with a loving heart.

I, I... this-this, this is worth
much, much more than that pig.

No, I couldn't possibly take it.

But, look, I took your pig, too.

It will ease my
conscience. Please, take it.

Let's not talk about it
and we'll have a drink.

I-I don't know, I...

You must taste some of your pig.

♪ ♪

What's that?

It is milk... Hmm.

Mixed with the blood
of an unborn calf.

It's a delicacy, Hoss.

It will give you strength.

Yes, sir.

Zurka, tell me.

Why do you think
the girl is bewitched?

Oh... she was born
under the dark star.

Her mother died in her efforts.

It's very bad.

Well, does a mother's
death make a child evil?

Mm, sometimes.

You know, our beliefs
are old and strong.

We must live as they tell us.

Is there nothing in your beliefs
about mercy, compassion?

Yes, but is it possible to
have mercy and compassion

for a girl who can
turn herself into a wolf?

♪ ♪

♪ ♪

Go after your son, barosan.

Zurka, I respect your
beliefs, but I'm not a man

who goes along much with
spirits and witches and the like.

You know, I've
found that the only evil

in this world is the human kind.

But the evil in man
doesn't come from nowhere.

It is born in a dark world,
beyond the world we know.

And it's sent here on purpose.

You really believe that girl
can turn herself into a wolf.

Yes. She must plague our house.

The devil drives her.

He possesses our children

and drives them against us.

She's evil, believe me.

No, I can't believe it.

I don't think so.

Oh, I do think that
poor girl is suffering.

Not from an evil in her, but
from some kind of despair

and loneliness because
her own people rejected her

and persecuted her.

You are a gajo.
You're a civilized man.

The understanding for the devil

and his ways has
been bred out of you.

Zurka, have you ever seen

any real evidence
of the devil in her?

Or are you afraid of her
because she was unlucky enough

to have been born under
some weather-obscured star.

You know, a man, possibly
you've never heard of him,

once said, "The
fault, dear Brutus,

is not in our stars,
but in ourselves."

I like your words...
Uh, good words.

But not our words.

I have seen too much of evil.

Go after your son.
He's in danger.

The danger is in
the flesh, not fantasy.

My son can take pretty good
care of himself in that department.

Zurka... Give the girl a chance.

You may be wrong.


But I'm not.


I guess it's not going
to storm after all.

Well... thanks
for the silver bowl.

And thanks for the pig.

You run faster than
any buck deer I ever saw.

Little Joe, Little Joe...

Like a black panther

from the depths of
night in a dark dream.

Once I saw my lover steal away.

Why'd you come in the
camp and dance like that?

To frighten them.

To see their faces.

There are so many things I
just can't understand about you.

We live in two
worlds, Little Joe.

In my world, there
are demons and spirits

who eat up living
souls like grain,

and fly about the night in
wagons made of smoke.

I am one of them.

I know it.

And my people know it.

Now, you listen to me.

I don't want you talking
that way anymore.

You're no more
a witch than I am.

Somehow they've
got you thinking things

that just don't make sense.

You are a tree.

I see you as a tree.

So firm, a part of the land,

with your roots dug
deep into the ground.

Your arm is like a branch.

I wish I were a tree.

I would stand
over little children

and guard them from harm.

Maybe I am not a witch.

Maybe I, maybe I am
good to think such thoughts.

Of course you're good.

I know you are.

Your heart is beating.

Is it because I am near you?


Am I beautiful?

You're very beautiful.

Can we talk of love sometime?

Hold me.

Hold me.

Little Joe...

♪ ♪

Please... Please help me.

You refused our help.

You were driven
away from our house.

The devil is in me.

Help me.

There's only one
way to help you.

Do you know what that means?

It means pain beyond
anything you've ever known.

Agony that will
tear at your mind

and sear your soul.

I don't care.

Even if it would mean my death.

♪ ♪

Anybody here?!


Where's Tirza?

She's in the mountains.

There is nothing you
can do for her now, gajo.

She is a devil.

She has changed
herself into a wolf

and slaughtered chickens.

My people are going to help her.

What do you mean "help her"?

They are going to
stake her to the ground

and pick at her soul, until
she screams for mercy.

But they will only dig deeper

until they have found the
rotten spot and scooped it out.

And then, they will
leave her body limp

and her mind a useless thing.

I could have killed you both
on your moonlit rock of love.

It would have been easy.

It would have been too easy.

It would have only given
me a moment or two.

This way, I can see
them scar her mind

as she has scarred my face.

I can make you crawl
as I have crawled.

I know what they're
trying to do, Tirza.

Don't let them!

But I want them to.

Don't you see? No, I don't see.

All I see is a lot of talk
that doesn't make sense.

But it does.

The devil is in me.

They will take him away and
make my soul as clean as air.

Tirza, don't!

Asmodeus... the Bruja is here.

She will drive you back
into the world of the dead.

At the end of the
world, there's a hole

through which one can
descend in the underworld.

This can be reached
by following the direction

taken by the setting sun.

The journey should
be made on two cocks...

harnessed together.

In the underworld,
it is time to sleep.

It takes two months
walking through darkness

before one sees a light.

It is a cavernous passage

guarded by nine white dogs.

The passage leads directly

to the castle of the black,
man-eating emperor.

The castle is in that flagon.

And when it bursts,

he shall be released
from the soul of this girl.

What's your name?

Tirza. How old are you?


How long has the
devil been in you?

How long?

Since my birth.

Why does he possess you?

Tell me. Tell me.

Oh... I can't breathe.

I can't breathe.

What is the devil's name?

I don't know. What is his name?

As... Asmodeus.


Can you see him now?

No. I want you to see him.

See his goat's
face and fiery eyes.

The hairy, twisted body

and the cloven hoof.


Bones. Claws.

Hoofs. Horns.

Can you see him now? No.

Three times from east to west.

And three times
from west to east.

Scorpions, feathers,
spider web...

I conjure thee, Asmodeus.

I exorcise thee,
O ancient serpent,

by the judge of the
living and the dead,

that from this girl,

thou, with fears and
afflictions of thy fury,

speedily depart.

Little Joe... I am free.

Coffee? No, no thanks.

I, uh... I wanted
to talk to you.

Go ahead, boy.

Well, you remember
once you told us that

we could have a
piece of this land

when it was time.

That's right.

Is it time, boy?

Yes, sir.

Well, if that's what you want.

Tirza's a fine, young woman.

I'd be proud to have
her for a daughter.

Zurka, come in. Come in, please.

Well, barosan, the sky clears,

so we are on our way,
as I promised. Uh-huh.

It was a good land, and we
are grateful for the hospitality.

Well... The girl
is coming with us.

Our house is her house now.

Tirza's not going with you.

You want her, young man? Yes.

But it is our way
that if a man marries,

he is to join the girl's family.

You have to become a Gypsy.

Tirza's going to
stay here with me.

No, Little Joe.

I cannot stay.

What do you mean you can't stay?

Remember the fish in the stream?

I wanted to be one of them.

I am one of them now.

I've waited so long to
see love in their eyes,

instead of fear and hate.

It is in my heart to go.

Tirza, you can't go.

Do you understand, I love you
more than anything in my life?

You are a tree, Joe, not a fish.

You must stand tall and watch
over this land that is yours.

Tirza, I... Stay.

Stay here.

And think of me sometimes

when the stars are in the skies.

I will have memories
of you always.

Good-bye, Little Joe.

You have a good son.

I always wished to
have a son like this.

So many times, I tried
to make a son of Spiro.

Yes, I'm... I'm
sorry about Spiro.

He's better off in
the land of the Mulos.

He'll find peace and...
judgment for his sins.

Then you know what
he was trying to do?


We found the wolf's
paw on his body.

It was still wet with blood.

It was our mistake.

You know, Zurka,

sometimes it's
possible to see the devil

when you're
looking for the devil.

Our mistake was that

we didn't see
the devil in Spiro.

Hmm, maybe so.

Good-bye, my brother,

and may you have a long life.

Behind the Scenes of Dark Star

Little Joe gets bitten on his right hand by the girl. When Ben asks him what happened, he holds up his left hand, rubbing it after leaving the room.

Tirza reveals that she is 19 during the “exorcism” scene. When this episode first aired, in reality, Susan Harrison was 21.

This episode makes Susan Harrison’s only appearance in the series.

Arthur Batanides made only two appearances in the series, both as Pablo in Bonanza: The Fugitive (1961).

Looking for More Bonanza Episodes?

Bonanza is a must-watch Western show to watch by yourself or with family. It ran under NBC’s production from September 1959 to January 1973. The series lasted 14 seasons, with Dark Star being the 31st episode out of 430.

Books Worth Reading:

You can find more about any of the 430 Bonanza episodes here>>

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