Bonanza Western TV
The Lone Writer  

Vendetta Full Episode – Bonanza, Season #01, Episode #13

The Western television series Bonanza had its viewers glued to its show every week through its starstudded cast and compelling storyline. It also tackled various social issues while still incorporating the general Western theme.

Thomas Thompson wrote Vendetta, which initially aired on December 5, 1959. The episode becomes the most action-filled episode since “The Paiute War.” The guest cast includes Simon Scott, who played Tom Pryor, and William Pullen as Sheriff Tolliver.

Ben Cartwright manages to kill a Morgan gang member despite the severe injuries he experienced during a bank robbery. Outlaw leader Carl Morgan (Mort Mills) swears vengeance, causing fear to the people of Virginia City. The townspeople flee in terror—the situation leaving Ben and his son Hoss to their fate. Only an intoxicated and anxious Eastern doctor stayed to help the Cartwrights stand against the Morgans.

Read its plot, including some fantastic trivia, or see the complete episode below.

Watch the full episode of Vendetta

Watch the full episode of Vendetta:

Main Cast

Apart from the main cast, Bonanza’s thirteenth episode for its first season, Vendetta, featured some of the program’s recurring and one-off supporting actors. The episode’s cast consists of:

  • Lorne Greene as Ben Cartwright
  • Pernell Roberts as Adam Cartwright
  • Dan Blocker as Eric ‘Hoss’ Cartwright
  • Michael Landon as Joseph ‘Little Joe’ Cartwright
  • Whitney Blake as Ann Samuels
  • Simon Scott as Tom Pryor
  • Mort Mills as Carl Morgan
  • Grant Richards as Standford
  • Bartlett Robinson as Ralph Carter
  • Bill Quinn as Doc Travis (as William Quinn)
  • Harry Carey Jr. as Zack Morgan
  • John Milford as Ned Morgan
  • Maurice Manson as Mr. Martin
  • Steve Rowland as Billy Morgan
  • William Pullen as Sheriff Sam Toller
  • James Gavin as Townsman
  • Baynes Barron as Skinner
  • Kay Stewart as Mrs. Martin
  • Nick Borgani as Townsman (uncredited)
  • Forest Burns as Posse Member (uncredited)
  • Bill Clark as Barfly (uncredited)
  • Joe Garcio as Townsman (uncredited)
  • Augie Gomez as Townsman (uncredited)
  • Chuck Hamilton as Townsman (uncredited)
  • Al Haskell as Townsman (uncredited)
  • William Meader as Townsman (uncredited)
  • Ron Nyman as Townsman (uncredited)
  • Cosmo Sardo as Bartender (uncredited)
  • Cap Somers as Townsman (uncredited)

Full Story Line of Vendetta

The episode starts with the Cartwrights—Adam and Little Joe leaving to find the best breed cattle while Ben and Hoss enter a bank. By then, a bank robbery had taken place. Protecting the clerk and Hoss, Ben shoots one of the robbers, who apparently, was a member of the Morgan gang. One of them shoots Ben back, and the group flees the place.

Seeing Ben’s terrible injuries, the doctor believes it’s unadvisable to head back to the Ponderosa. Anne then offers to let him stay at her place. She owes Ben and remembers his kindness to her. Many town residents visit Ben, congratulating him and promising not to forget what they owe him. They guarantee him that the posse will get the rest of the Morgan gang. Ben lacks confidence in this, considering how tough the Morgans can become.

Ben apologizes to Anne for the trouble as everyone leaves. She informs him of her debt to Ben. Her husband once believed he had friends in town, only for them to turn their backs on him—all except for Ben. They let a lawyer persuade them into hanging an innocent man. Now, her spouse is dead, and she’s a saloon girl. She advises Ben not to rely on his so-called “friends.”

Books Worth Reading:

A trap welcomes the posse at the Morgan camp, leading to their death. A Paiute returns the bodies to Virginia City. According to the attached note, the Morgans will be there for Ben at sundown.

Meanwhile, the lawyer, Tom Pryor, is now the town drunk. He blames himself for wrongly hanging Anne’s husband, laughing as he sees the town prepare to hand Ben over rather than secure his safety.

Hoss is at a loss with words and does not understand what to do. Ben states they must welcome the Morgans into town while preparing a trap for them. Hoss walks around town seeking help and support, but everyone declines. Some even accuse Ben of endangering the city.

The only person who consents to assist is Tom. Desperate, Hoss decides to accept anyone, even the intoxicated lawyer. He begins building the barricades while he and Tom hide the rope that will hold the Morgans. Tom will be responsible for pulling the string once the gang crosses it.

Ben requests Anne to bring him a gun. With all of his “friends” nearby, she jokes sarcastically, “He won’t need it,” before sincerely warning him not to put his trust in town. Hoss and Tom show up. She lets him in even though he’s one to blame for her husband’s death. They successfully avoid Ben’s questions about the town’s assistance by saying, “All that are willing are ready.” As Hoss leaves, Anne states Hoss can’t fight the Morgans alone; doing so will most likely lead to his death. Hoss acknowledges that he most likely will.

Books Worth Reading:

As dusk approaches, Tom needs a drink to rehydrate himself. He enters the saloon, and most of the populace is drowning in guilt and cowardice. Tom invites them to his world. He then takes a bottle and weapon and goes upstairs.

Hoss checks to see if Tom is ready, only to discover that no one is there. The doctor approaches and says he’s terrible with a gun. However, he’ll try his best to help in any possible way. Hoss decides to teach him when and how to pull the rope.

Ben doesn’t understand the lack of gunfire as the Morgans arrive. The doctor should have pulled the rope by now with the town fighting the Morgans. The lack of action puzzles the Morgans as well. Ben understands that Hoss lied about the men, and he’s now out there alone. He has Anne assist him up.

Hoss fires off a couple of shots as he ducks around corners. Tom, from the window above the saloon, attempts to shoot but is shot and falls out. Hoss kills many members of the gang.

Meanwhile, Anne has gotten Ben outside. She approaches Tom when she sees him lying in the street. While dying in her lap, he tells her to put her hate behind her.

Books Worth Reading:

The oldest of the Morgans wishes to deal with Ben alone. Hoss dislikes the idea, but Ben consents to meet Carl. Ben wins the fair draw despite his injuries. The town emerges, unable to face Ben, who scowls at them. Ben also tells Hoss that he had high expectations from them. Hoss informs him that Tom and the doctor’s assistance. Ben acknowledges that some people make the best effort possible, which makes up for the rest.

Full Script and Dialogue of Vendetta

Well, Adam, I want you to get

the best breed cattle
you can find in California.

If it costs more, you pay it.

There'll be a letter of
credit waiting for you

at the bank in Sacramento.

Sure wish I was riding with you.

Hoss, you know it
was already decided

it was my chance to get a
look at some of them city gals.

When did we decide that?

Oh, he decided all by himself.

And when Pa mentioned
this would be a good week


to do some fence repairing.

Those fences will
still be waiting for you

when you boys get back.

Now use your judgment, Adam.

Make sure you get
what you pay for.

You watch them city gals,
too, you hear that, Little Joe?

I intend to do just that.

Take care.

One more place, please, Ben.

You sign right there. Ah.

There, that should do it.

Folks, my name's Zach Morgan.

These are my
brothers, Ned and Billy.



That's right.

Start collecting it.

Now there's been a lot of
loose talk going around town

about us being killers.

Well, don't you
believe none of it.

Don't get any notions.

All righty, let's
have the rest of it.

That's all there is.

You know, I bet you go home

and have lunch with your
wife, don't you, mister?

Well, I'll tell you what,

how would you like us
to drop you off there...


That's all there is, I swear it.

Somebody stop him!


He's gonna be all right.

I had to probe pretty
deep for that bullet.

That's all right, Doc.

He'll be all right as
soon as I get him home.

He'll bleed to death before
you get him half way there.

Internal hemorrhaging.

He's got to be bedded tight.

Strapped down if need be.

Ben, Ben... You
can stay at my place.

That'd be best, Hoss.

I'll get him a clean shirt.

Give me a hand with him.

No, wait... wait a minute.

The young Morgan boy...

He was hurt pretty bad.

If he dies, the whole
Morgan gang will be back.

I owe you something, Ben.

I haven't forgotten.

Come on.

Easy now, Pa.



Ben, I'm sorry.

Oh, that's all right, Sam.

You going after them?

Well, yes, sir.

Now, you be careful.

That Carl Morgan...
He's smart as a lobo.

I'm not forgetting what
he did to my deputy.

Now don't let your
anger lead you into a trap.

Come on, Pa, it's
no time for talking.

I need two good men
to ride after the Morgans.

Two good shots.

Just two... to ride with
me and my deputies.

Any of you.

I'll ride with you.

Give me a gun.

Pryor, you're drunk.

I said I'll go.

Give me a gun.

Not you, Tom.

Not this time.


All right.

It took long enough to wake up.

We'll get the guns
for you down at the jail.

Just a little ways now, Billy.

You just hold on.

Carl's gonna skin us
when he sees Billy's shot.

Maybe we ought
to rest him, Zach.

Nah, it ain't far now.

There's nothing we can do for
him here no anyway. Hyah, hyah.

It's blood all right.

Fresher than the
last we spotted.

Why didn't you
watch out for the kid?

We tried.

We did just like you told us.

Don't take it out on me.

Ben Cartwright shot the kid.

His time's coming.

What about him, Skinner?

You're supposed to be able
to patch people up, aren't you?

I only tended to
mules in the army, Carl.

That don't mean I
can work miracles.

You're no better than
that prison butcher

that hacked up my leg!

Carl! Shut up!

Now... now you
listen to me, Billy.

You listen good.

You're gonna come out of this.

You're gonna get yourself up

and you're gonna
ride out of here with us.

You're gonna do what I tell you.


You hear me, Billy?!

You get up now!

Ain't no use talking to him.

He's dead.

Was me raised him.

First time I fought with Pa

was when he got liquored up
and started in to thrash Billy.

I'll settle for you, son.

That's a promise I'll keep.

We're all ready
to ride in, Carl.

You just give the word.

Posse's coming!

Well, who'd of thought
they'd have guts enough

to come looking for us?

Get the rifles.

We're gonna set up.

We gonna have a
little surprise party?


Yeah, we gonna have
a little party for 'em.

Smell a touch of wood smoke?

Let's move out.

Don't make a move.

You ain't gonna
shoot me, are ya?

Just keep your hands high.

Don't worry, I ain't
gonna make a play.

All right, boys, rope him.

Search the camp.

Feel better, Ben?


Just don't like making
you miss your work.

Guess they can go on
getting drunk without me.

Ben, do you think
you could sleep

if I pulled down the blind?

Anne, I don't like
being moved in here

and maybe put you in danger.

Plenty of people in town
who'd have bedded me down.

Are you sure?

Don't count on them, Ben.

You'll make the same
mistake my husband did.

So much bitterness...
It doesn't become you.

I don't think Ed would
have wanted it that way.

Doesn't really matter, does it?

He's dead.

Ben, at the trial, he
kept saying to me

there was nothing
to worry about.

He said, "People in
this town are my friends."

Well, it was his friends

that let Tom Pryor talk
them into a hanging.

"People in this town know
me. They're my friends."

I guess it wasn't till they
put the rope around his neck,

he knew any better.

Sometimes a lawyer
can sweet talk a jury

into making mistakes.

They wanted to see Ed hang.

They're like a pack of vultures.

All except you, Ben.

Look at them down there now.

The whole town all excited
over a shooting and a killing.

Oh, how's Ben doing?

Well, sir, he's
still pretty weak,

but he's getting some rest now.

Well, tell him not to
worry about the Morgans.

We're all right here.

I reckon he knows how
all of you feel, Mr. Stanford.

Hoss, tell Ben we'll
be up to see him.

I sure will, Mr. Martin.

We expect him to be up and
snorting for the celebration

when the sheriff brings
in the Morgan gang.

Yes, sir.

Hoss. Howdy, Miss Samuels.

Howdy, Pa.

Pa, they wouldn't even
let me pay for that food.

That's how everybody's
feeling about this thing.

Ben, how are you doing?

Too much mollycoddling.

Well, I'll tell you one thing:

The Morgans sure
picked the wrong man

to shoot this time.

Ben, this town hasn't
been so worked up

since Ed Samuel's trial.

Oh, uh... well, uh, what
I meant to say was...

I'm sorry, ma'am.

You're sorry.

Well, that helps a lot.

As I was saying, Ben,

this town is sure
worked up about all this.

The Morgans have
been terrorizing

this neighborhood
long enough, Ben.

It's time they got what
was coming to them.

You saved my life, Ben.

And I ain't aiming to forget it.

Thank you, Ralph.

Now, there's not going to
be any trouble, mind you.

Not with the posse
after the Morgans.

Well, we'd better
not stay too long.

Don't forget, Ben, we're
keeping a drink warm for you

down at the bar.

It's good to know
you have friends.

Oh, Ralph, say thank
you to everybody

for all this.

It's no more than
you'd do for us.

Just take care of yourself, Ben.

Now, don't look like there's
going to be any trouble, Pa.

Hope not.

But you know the Morgans.

Yeah, well, even if they
give the posse the slip

and try to come in,

whole town's going
to be backing us.

I'm counting on that.

What's the matter, Pa?

I'm all right.

It's no good being
helpless like this.

Put a pillow behind my head?

Yes, sir.

Well, there... Don't
you worry, now.

Old Sam's posse's probably
got them already rounded up.

I hope Sam isn't too anxious.

That Carl Morgan.

He thinks more like
an animal than a man.

That's the way you
have to fight him.


Sam? Sam!

No. Let me go!

It's no use, Mrs. Toller.

It's no use.

What is it?

Don't look like the
posse got them, Pa.

Made out to Ben Cartwright.

It says, "We're coming
into town before sundown."

I guess we all
know who wrote it.

Well, what's the
matter, good people?

The sight of death chill you?

Shut up, you drunken hangman.

Sam Toller had no
call to go out like that.

He left the whole
town unprotected.

It's Ben Cartwright
they're after.

Maybe we can sneak him out
of town. Hide him somewheres.

He'll be dead in an hour
if you try to move him.

If Sam Toller and his posse
couldn't take the Morgan gang,

what chance have we got?

Looks like you boys are going
to have to do a little fighting.

Sending an innocent
man to the gallows

wasn't enough for
you, was it, Pryor?

Talked the town into
hanging Ed Samuels.

Now you're trying to
talk us into more trouble.

You drunken troublemaker.

The Cartwrights shouldn't
have shot that Morgan boy.

That's what started all this.

What are you laughing
about, Mr. Pryor?

Look at them.

All the big men.

All the big men in town

that were going to stand back
of Ben Cartwright, way back!

I think it's very funny.

Five dead bodies, Mr. Pryor.

That ain't very funny.

You won't be doing
much business today.

What time does it start?

4:00, maybe. Before sundown.

Adam and Little Joe on
their way to California,

and you and me trapped here.

Ah, take it easy, son.

You know, maybe this
whole thing's for the best.

What do you mean, Pa?

Well... Carl Morgan
and his brothers

have been preying
on this territory

like a pack of wild dogs.

And that's just the way
they have to be fought.


Maybe I could get
some of the town's men

and ride out and meet him.

And come back slung
over your saddle?

You know, when I was a boy...

I don't think I ever
told you boys this.

My uncle sent me out
hunting a pack of dogs

that were stealing my pet sheep.

Slogged around
for a couple of days,

never-never even
got a smell of them.

Now, when my uncle
sent me out there...

He sent me out there
to teach me something.

When I got back, he showed me.

He took an old goat and
he tethered him outside.

And then we got our guns and
we waited until that dog pack came.

Carl Morgan is like
that old brown dog.

Wild, smart.

But now there's an old
goat tethered in here

that he wants bad
enough to walk into a trap.

Which way do you
figure they'll come in, Pa?

Right down Main Street.

They'll figure we
won't expect them

to come in right
out in the open.


That's the way
they'll go out, too.

It's broad and clear.

Less chance of
them getting cut off.


They'll probably wait
till almost sundown,

hoping we'll panic.

Now, we can't keep
them from coming in.

Got to figure us how to
stop them from getting out.


I can close off all
those side streets

with wagons and
crates and stuff.

Yeah. Yeah, that's good.

Hoss... let's get a rope.

Get a long rope...

and pull it right
across Main Street.

Cover it up with a lot of dirt,

and you wait
till they ride past,

then you pull that rope tight.


And put about half
your men down there,

and make sure they don't shoot

Until the Morgans are
trapped by that rope.

Yes, sir.

Get Carter and
Stanford and Martin.

They're all good men.

Yes, sir.

Ma'am, I'd like to
talk to Mr. Martin.

My husband's sick.

Ma'am, I just saw
him this morning.

He's sick.

You leave him alone.

Mr. Martin, I need you.

Hoss, I'm the first one in
town to want to help Ben.

The first one,
but... I'm listening.

I got a wife and
children to think about.

Sometimes a man's got
to think about something

besides himself, Mr. Martin.

Well, you tell that to
Sam Toller's wife and kids.

Look, Hoss, I can
pay your Pa back

everything that he loaned me
on what I still own for the store.

But I can't go out
there, Hoss. I can't.


I can, I can pay him
back everything, see?

Thank you, Mr. Martin. It ain't
money I'm needing right now.

Good day, ma'am.

It's not my job out there,
Hoss. You know that.

I'm the only
doctor in this town.

What if the Morgans kill me,

the way they did the
men on the posse?

I'll tell you something
right to your face.

I've got no quarrel
with the Morgans,

and I sure ain't
gonna go out there

and get my head blown off

just to save Ben Cartwright.

No, sir. I reckon you ain't.

How's Ben's wound?

Well, it soaked
through a little bit, Doc.

That bandage
ought to be changed,

but I'm sort of busy.

I'll take care of it.


Mr. Davis!

Mr. Carter!

Mr. Carter, I need you real bad.

What's the matter
with all of you?

You think you can sit in here
and hide from the Morgans

any better than you did from me?

No use making trouble.

It's the Morgans that's
making the trouble, not me.

Can't you get that
through your heads?

It ain't our fight.

Yeah, that's right.

It's your Pa they're
coming after.

Let the Cartwrights
fight their own battles.

They ain't part of this town.

Well, what about it?

Any of you got guts enough
to stand up and take sides?

I ain't gonna bother asking
you again, Mr. Carter.

You told my Pa when
he saved your life

that you wasn't going
to be forgetting it.

Pretty hollow-sounding
words, ain't they?

Well, I ain't gonna
do no more begging.


I'd like to go
along, if it's all right.

I won't be much use,
I guess. I can't shoot.

I never killed a man.

Except Ed Samuels.

Except Ed Samuels.

Maybe you don't want me.

Mr. Pryor, when I came in here,

I was asking for
men to step forward.

As far as I'm concerned,

you're the only man
in the whole room.

I'm ready to go.

All I need is a gun.

And maybe a
couple of more drinks!

It's a pretty sad thing, the
smell of fear in this room.

Come on, Mr. Pryor.

Well, we're ready when
you are, Hoss. Good.

You know, your pa once
saved me from a bunch

of drunken trail hands...
I ain't ever forgot that.

Mighty glad you're
with us, Mr. Stanford.

I didn't know what
I was gonna tell Pa.

Yeah, I guess you
already got the others

posted around town, huh?

That's it, ain't it?

Not exactly, no, sir.

Change your plans?

I mean, you got the others to
go along with you, haven't you?

Same as me?

No, sir, there...

there ain't nobody but you
and me and Mr. Pryor here.

Well, there's Martin
and, uh, Ralph Carter...

They'll go along
with us. No, sir.

Just you and... me
and Mr. Pryor, that's all.

Just, uh, you and Pryor, huh?

That's right.

Well, no offense
intended, Hoss, but, uh...

Pryor here ain't much
of a man with a gun.

No, sir, I.. I reckon he ain't,

but he's willing to try.

You'll need good men
to face the Morgans.

I guess you and Ben
know that, don't you?

Yes, sir. That's
why I'm mighty glad

you're with us, Mr. Stanford.


Well, I didn't figure
on going it alone.

You're a good man
with a gun, aren't you?

Well, I ain't that good.

I mean, I'm no gunman,
you know that, Hoss.

Yes, sir.

I reckon you ain't no gunman.

It'd be... be different if...

there were others, but...

Well, you understand,
don't you, Hoss?

Yes, sir, I understand.

You look real home-like now.

They shut down the
saloon for the day.

Something wrong?

No, everything's fine, Ben.

Wish Hoss would get
here with those men.

Plans to be made.

They'll be along.

Skinner's never
done a right thing

in his whole life.

He should've sent
me or Zach into town.

Uh-huh. Maybe
with a big red flag,

so's they'd be sure to spot you.

But I'm parched, Carl!

What are they doing in there?

Nothing. Just nothing at all.

Doesn't sound
like Ben Cartwright.

But if it was a trap, you'd
have seen them setting up for it.

That's right, there
ain't no trap, Carl.

Let's ride.

You'd better come
on in the back.

You don't want to get
hit by a stray bullet.

You want me to go out
there, is that what you want?

Well, say it, if that's
what you mean.

Do you want me to get killed?

Do you want me to leave you
and the kids alone in the world?

I'm doing what
I'm doing for you.

I mean it, I'm doing it for you!

It ain't that I'm afraid.

I ain't afraid.

CARTER: Brandy.

What are you looking at?

Nothing, Mr. Carter.

Can't you get any decent
brandy in this place?

Shut up, Carter.

You got no right to kick.

None of us got
any right to kick.

If you feel that way about it,
why don't you go out there?

You're packing a gun.


I'm packing a gun.

We wait here till sundown.

I want to see the
Cartwrights sweat.

I want to see 'em crawl.

They're not gonna do
you much good, Ben,

not in your condition.

Oh, a man feels better
with a gun in his hand.

Why do you need it, Ben,

if your friends are
going to fight for you?

Where are they, Ben?

Why aren't they here?

Well, these things take time.

Men have to get ready.

They've had plenty of time, Ben.

I told you before
and I tell you now,

don't put your
faith in any of them.

It hasn't been misplaced, Anne.

Ma'am, Mr. Pryor here is the
only one that'd come along.

Your father's
waiting to see you.

If you'd prefer,
I'll stay out here.

It doesn't matter.

Come on in, if you like.

I've wanted to talk to you,

to tell you how sorry I
am about everything.

Oh, everybody's sorry,

but that doesn't bring
back my husband.


Nothing can do that.

But it was a mistake.

At the time I was
certain that Ed was guilty.

You didn't care whether
he was guilty or not.

You only wanted to win
a case, to see him hang.

Big district attorney,

make a name for himself,

further his political career.

It's as simple as
that, isn't it, Mr. Pryor?

Admit it.

I've paid, Mrs. Samuels.

I hope you never
stop paying for it.

Pa wants to see you.

I'm surprised to
see you here, Pryor.

I've already told Pa
how everybody drew lots

to see who'd be
the town spokesman.

They picked a strange spokesman.

I have some reputation left

as a good spokesman,
Mr. Cartwright.

Are the men ready?

All that are willing.

How many are there?

The town spoke
with one voice, sir.

All your friends
took the same stand.

That's right, Pa, everybody
feels the same way about it.

Well, keep them calm...
don't let them get nervous.

Remember, don't let them shoot

till the Morgans get
past the center of town.

I'll tell them, Pa.

I'd rather be out
there with you.

I know, Pa, but...
don't you worry,

everything's gonna be all right.

Tell him, Hoss.

Tell him the whole story.

I've already told him
everything he needs to know.

You holding anything back, Hoss?

Only that we

figured not to put
anybody up here,

because he'd just
draw fire anyhow.

Mm. That makes sense.

Should be pretty soon now.

Take care of yourself, Hoss.

Yes, sir.


Why didn't you tell him?

Well, ma'am, I
can't just tell him

that all his
friends quit on him.

You can't face Morgan alone.

Not... not with him.

Well, we got to
do the best we can.

But you'll be killed.

Right now, ma'am,
that seems most likely.

All right, time to move out.

All right.

Well, it's just about that time.

Ought to make a real good show.

What about us?
If there's fighting,

the Morgans are gonna
shoot up this town.

That's for sure, maybe
get some of us killed to boot.

I don't want to be around
when the lead starts flying.

It's so blamed
unparticular just who it hits.

Hey! Hey!

That's good. Hold it.

Well, looks like the
show's gonna be right here.

Well, that means shooting.

Let's drift. Yeah.

All right, let's go, Mr. Pryor.

Now, wait, I need a drink.

Not now. Hoss, I tell
you, I need a drink.

Not now, Mr. Pryor.

You want me to die out here?

Mr. Pryor, you listen to me.

I don't care what you do
once this thing's over with.

You can lay down and
die and rot in the street.

But you offered to
come along on this thing,

and you're gonna stick
till it's over with, Mr. Pryor.

Do you understand
that? You're gonna stick!

All right, let's go.

Now, get on back across
the street and stay out of sight.

As soon as the Morgans
ride across the rope,

pull the stove loose.

You understand? Yeah.

Mr. Pryor, I know
you're feeling bad,

but you just gotta make it.

It ain't gonna be long now.

I don't know.

I don't think I can make it.

You gotta.

Just do the best
you can, Mr. Pryor.

That's all any man can do.

Well, gentlemen, I find myself
drinking in worthy company.

Yes, gentlemen,

I'm a deserter just as you are.

Shut up, Pryor.

Bartender, give
me another drink.

Help me to drown my soul

as my friends have
succeeded in doing.

The surcease they find in this

is only fleeting,

for tomorrow and
all their tomorrows

they'll awaken to new
pangs of conscience.

Why don't you shut up?

You let me hound an
innocent man to death,

and you cheered while he died.

Well, now, gentlemen, it's
you who are the executioners.

You're letting good men die
when you could save them.

You were out there.

Why ain't you out there now?

I was afraid.

Just like you,
gentlemen, I was afraid.

You're hiding, gentlemen.

You're hiding from yourselves.

And you're running.

You'll never be able to stop

because you can't
hide within yourself.

I'm only good for
making speeches

and speeches aren't
much good now, are they?

There's no time for speeches.

What's he up to?

I don't know.

Where you going, Doc?

Out to keep an obligation.

Anne, are you sure
that everything's ready?

Yes, Ben.

And Hoss got all the men placed?

All of them.

It's gonna be fine, Anne.

- It's gonna be just...
- What is it?

They're coming in, Ben.

The Morgans are coming in.

Where's Pryor?

He's gone.

His nerve didn't last.

Ain't you gonna run, too?

I got some of my nerve back.

I'm no hand with
a gun, but maybe

there's something else I can do.

There is, Doc.

Look here.

It's too quiet, Carl.

Maybe they took
Ben Cartwright out.

He's here.

He wouldn't run
away from a fight.

Sure enough thought... Shut up!

Sure, Carl.

Stay close and tight.

I'm not covering for anybody
that's got no more sense

than a stray getting
cut out of the herd.

Ben Cartwright!

Come on out to face
me or be dragged out!

Something's gone wrong.

They should've been
cutting them off by now.


Listen to me, and listen good.

Whoever's hiding the Cartwrights

better get them
out here and fast!

Or I'm not going to
just tree this town,

I'm going to burn it to ashes!

Help me.

Hoss lied to me, didn't he? Yes.

There's nobody out
there to face them but him.

It's no use, Ben, you'll
only get yourself killed!

All right, you had your time.

Now I'm going house by house,

and I'm going to kill
everything that moves

till I get to the Cartwrights!

I can't get a clear
shot, get me outside!


Over here, Morgan!

Pa, you all right?

I gotta get you upstairs.

I'm all right.

We'll wait here together.

I don't feel much
of anything now.




That's only for the living.

Anne... forget the hate.

It's too quiet, Pa.

They're trying to
keep us guessing.

You killed them, Cartwright!

You killed all my brothers!

Now make your play face-to-face
if you got the guts for it!

This is my play, Hoss.

Pa, I can't let you do it.

Hoss... Yes, sir.

Behind the Scenes of Vendetta

Ben’s dialogue is omitted and covered by music in the scene where he lays in bed, and Hoss enjoys the defeated posse arriving at the town. However, you can still see his lips moving.

The storyline heavily references the film High Noon, in which a man unsuccessfully rallies the town to fight off a vengeful outlaw. For example, the lone volunteer who showed up at the last minute seems prepared to battle only to pull back when he realizes no one else joined to help Hoss/Will Kane in their quest.

“Julia’s Palace” still operates even though “Julia Bulette” died seven episodes ago (“The Julia Bulette Story”).

There hasn’t been any special guest star for about three episodes, not even Whitney Blake this time.

Books Worth Reading:

This episode marks the first time someone shoots any of the Cartwrights in the series. It was Ben who got shot in this episode during a bank break-in.

This episode marks the first time for the series to show a law enforcement officer die. Sheriff Sam Toller dies in this episode.

Looking for More Bonanza Episodes?

Bonanza is a fantastic clean show produced by NBC that you can watch alone or with family. The show ran on their network from September 1959 to January 1973. The entire series lasted 14 seasons, with Vendetta as the 13th episode out of 430. 

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

Leave A Comment

book cover mockup for Western Writing

Looking for an Epic Western Adventure? Look No Further!

How would you like to ride hell-bent for leather into a world full of adventure and heroism?

Get Your Free Copy Today>>