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The Badge Full Episode – Gunsmoke, Season #06, Episode #09

Gunsmoke, a Western television series, established itself as a classic and fan-favorite of many Western fans. The series displays how US Marshal Matt Dillon, portrayed by James Arness, worked to maintain peace and order in Dodge City, Kansas. In addition to showing the usual challenges of frontier life, such as gunfights, bar brawls, and cattle rustling, Gunsmoke also dealt with issues like racism, alcoholism, and domestic violence. During its run, Gunsmoke has two episodes entitled “The Badge.”

The first among the two was Episode 9 from Season 6, detailing the story of two outlaws who shot and kidnapped Marshal Matt Dillon on a prairie. One of these delinquents abuses and bosses around the other who’s weaker than him. The episode, directed by Andrew V. McLaglen and written by John Meston (teleplay) and Marian Clark (story), aired on November 12, 1960.

Meanwhile, if you’re looking for the Gunsmoke episode from Season 15, where Miss Kitty left Dodge after watching Marshal Matt Dillon gets injured again, you’ll find that here.

Read The Badge‘s plotline and trivia, or watch the full Gunsmoke episode below.

Watch the Full Gunsmoke Episode, The Badge

Watch the full episode of The Badge:

Gunsmoke The Badge Cast

The following actors appeared in the Gunsmoke episode, The Badge:

  • James Arness as Matt Dillon
  • John Dehner as Rack
  • Conlan Carter as Augie
  • Harry Swoger as Ike
  • Allan Lane as Mac
  • Michael T. Mikler as Charlie (as Michael Mikler)
  • Fred McDougall as Posse Member (uncredited)
  • Chick Sheridan as Posse Member (uncredited)

Full Story Line for The Badge

Rack and Augie are outlaws fleeing from a posse after robbing a bank in a town. Soon enough, the people going after them decided to leave, realizing the two robbers may have gone far off the country for them to chase.

Meanwhile, Rack and Augie break near a prairie after one of their horses goes lame. Rack takes the horse, then orders Augie to hide by a tree and watch the road.

Later that day, Augie dashes into Rack’s position, waking him from sleep. Rack thought Augie had found someone coming their way, but he only returned to get a drink since it was too hot in his place. Annoyed, he slaps Augie to the ground, telling him to continue watching the road so they can take the horse of anyone riding alone through the prairie. Augie has no choice but to comply as ordered.

Moments later, Marshal Matt Dillon came passing through the trail alone. Rack tells Augie not to shoot unless he orders him to, while he slips close to the road to confront Dillon. Augie spots Dillon’s marshal’s badge from his position and lusts over it. Hence, even without Rack’s permission to fire, he shoots him in the shoulder. Rack intends to use Dillon to escape, believing that with a US Marshal with them, nobody would dare trouble them. Augie insists on wearing the badge, but Rack shuts him off by stating he can kill Matt and have his badge once they get to Texas. Rack also orders Augie to guard the marshal while he uses his horse to try to find another somewhere.

They decided to set camp to take the bullet off Dillon’s shoulder to help him heal faster. With a day to mend, they can continue riding to Texas. Augie continues to whine about having the marshal’s badge, much to Rack’s annoyance that he had beat the poor Augie to stop him from talking too much about the badge.

Dillon wakes up to Augie guarding him while Rack’s out to hunt for fresh meat. Augie tells him about his plans once they get to Texas, including finally wearing the marshal’s badge to know what it feels like to be an important person. Dillon wonders why Augie hasn’t worn his badge, to which he replies that Rack won’t let him do as he pleases, often ending up with Rack beating him up a lot. Augie also tells Dillon that Rack thinks Augie isn’t smart enough to wear the badge. Dillon uses this as an opportunity to make the poor Augie believe he’s smarter than Rack as a part of his escape plan.

Rack, Augie, and Dillon continue on the trail despite Dillon’s injuries. At one point, Rack gets Dillon’s badge to visit a dirt farm and get them something to eat. Augie finds it unfair, especially since he wants to wear the badge, but Rack again tells him to shut up. Rack also tells him to take the marshal off the road and keep themselves hidden as he does the talking.

Dillon tells Augie that he needs to be more convincing to let Rack know he can think for himself. He also agrees that Augie could have worn the badge and Rack. When asked, Augie confesses to not liking how Rack has constantly been beating and bossing him around for the past two years. Dillon convinces Augie that he doesn’t always have to deal with Rack’s commands.

Later, Rack tells Dillon that wearing the marshal’s badge has helped him get anything he wants, meaning he’ll no longer need Dillon to make it out of Kansas. He also tells Dillon that he’s waiting for morning to come so he can execute him. Augie returns to tell Rack that one of the horses wandered off while he was watering them. Annoyed, Rack hits Augie in the stomach. He then puts Augie in charge of the marshal as he goes after the horse.

As Rack leaves, Dillon tries to convince Augie to give him the gun to stop Rack from beating him by telling him that he’s smart and can think for himself. Augie, in return, asks the marshal if he could wear the badge if he helps him. Dillon agrees. Still hesitant, Augie gives himself time to think.

That evening, Augie tells Dillon that Rack’s asleep and cuts him loose while holding onto Dillon’s promise of allowing him to wear his badge. Rack realizes this and has Augie cornered, ready to beat him again. Augie then throws the gun to Dillon, who immediately shoots Rack to his death.

Dillon kept his promise, allowing Augie to wear his badge back to Dodge.

Full Script and Dialogue of The Badge


I should've knowed
better than to join a posse,

especially one led
by a blacksmith.

If I squeezed you hard enough,
sonny, your eyes would pop out.

Aw, now, wait a minute.

Ain't no need for
everybody to start fighting.

We had a long,
hard ride, we're tired.

Besides, we ain't no
closer to those two men

than when they rode out of town.

So you're all willing to
let 'em get by with it, huh?

Ride right into town,
hold up the bank?

They didn't kill nobody, Mac.

Only because nobody had
guts enough to try to stop 'em.

But we chased 'em, didn't we?

Wasn't even our money anyway.

Well, I got a store to tend.

I can't go chasing all over
the country after outlaws.

They're halfway to
Mexico by now anyway.

I need a drink.


Dirty bunch of cowards.


Yeah, he's gone lame.

You get up by them
trees and watch the road.

I'll take care of the horse.

What's the matter,
is somebody coming?

I didn't see nobody.

Then what are you doing here?

Well, it's hot up there, Rack.

I figured I'd come down,
get me a cool drink of water.

Don't kick me
now, don't kick me.

Now, you get back up
there and watch that road

like I told you, you hear?

Well, I've been watching it.

Get up.

Listen, Augie, we got to get
to Texas with that bank money.

- Now, don't we?
- Well, sure.

We can't do it with that
lame horse of yours, can we?


No, we got to sit right here

until somebody comes
along riding single.

- Now, don't we?
- Yeah.

Just so we can take his horse.

So you just get back
to your watching,

and as soon as you see
somebody coming along that road,

you yell.

Do you hear?

Oh, okay, Rack.

Rack, Rack, come here.

There's somebody
coming way out there.

Yeah, he's alone.

He's coming from the other way.


Indian Wells is that way.

He can't know nothing
about the bank robbery,

so he won't be
expecting no trouble.


You keep him covered from here

and I'll slip down
there close by the road.

And don't you do no shooting
unless I tell you, you hear?

I won't, Rack.

All right, keep down now.


Hands in the air, mister.

I got him.

I thought I told you
not to do no shooting.

I had to, Rack.

I'll finish him off, huh?

I got to have that badge.

- What are you talking about?
- It's a U.S. Marshals badge.

I seen it right off.

Hey, look at that.

- Yeah, I'll finish him off, huh?
- No.

But he's mine,
Rack, I got a right.

You got nothing
I don't tell you.

- Now, you listen to me.
- He's mine.

All right, you can have him.

Oh, I don't mean him,
I mean that badge.

Now, I got to
have it, I earned it.

Will you listen to me?

We got a far piece to go with
that bank money, haven't we?

Clear to Texas.

But if we have a
U.S. Marshal with us,

nobody is going to make
no trouble, are they?

They ain't?

No, not if we have
a gun in his back.

People don't like the idea

of being responsible for
a marshal getting killed.

I hadn't thought of that.

What about the horse?

This way we still
need another horse.

We can always
find another horse,

but we ain't likely to get a
chance at another marshal.

Well, can I wear the badge?

Augie, we get to Texas,

you can finish him off,
you can wear a badge,

- you...
- You promise?

I promise.

All right, now take him
over there by the horses.

Well, where are you going?

Well, I'm tired of waiting here.

I'm gonna take his mount
and go horse hunting.

If you don't mind, Marshal.

Don't you kill him unless
you have to, Augie.

I'll try to find a
horse somewhere.

He ain't getting no stronger.

Well, the sooner he dies, the
sooner I get to wear his badge.

Augie, I told you once,
we need him alive.

A dead marshal ain't
no use to us at all.

I'll live a lot longer if I get
this bullet out of my back.

By golly, you're right.

I wasn't thinking.

What are you talking about?

Well, Augie, you can't
leave a bullet in a man.

You got to cut it out.

That grove of trees over
there... We'll make camp

and fix the marshal up
so's that he can ride better.

Come on.

All right, bring him
over here, Augie.

I don't know if he can walk.

Well, never mind,
we'll do it there.

What are you gonna do now?

I'm gonna operate.

Give me your knife.


You're not going to cut
on me with that, are you?

Well, you want the
bullet out, don't you?

If you're going to
use that filthy blade,

you might as well
leave the bullet in.

Oh, well, now, Marshal, I
sure do beg your pardon.

I wouldn't want to
dirty you up none.

Uh, tear off a piece
of your shirt, Augie,

just tear off a
little piece there.

That's it.

That's fine.

Oh, that's no good.

You got to heat some water.

You got to boil the
knife in the water.

You shut up.

We ain't got the time.

I've always wanted to
work on the likes of you.

Y-You want me to hold him?

Oh, no, no, the
marshal's a brave man.

Ain't you, Marshal?

Get at it.

Yeah, so that's how you do it.

Too rough, Marshal?

I'm mighty sorry.

Hey, you're pretty
good at that, Rack.

Getting mighty pale, though.

We could lose him yet.

Will y-you get out of
here? You're bothering me.

Now, just go on over there to
the fire and sit down, will you?


You heard me.



Augie, you want
this bullet or not?

I don't want no bullet.

I gave you half
my shirt, didn't I?

Could I just please...?

Now, listen, don't you go
hollering for that badge now.

Pick up your knife.

We'll give him a day to mend.

He's no use to us
less'n he can ride.

Rack... jus-just while
he's laying there,

couldn't I wear the badge?

Now, I shot him, didn't I?

I earned it.

I told you to shut
up about that.

Don't hit me now.

Don't hit me.

Don't hit me no more.

I hit you from here on out,

you don't stop talking
about that badge.

Here, now, don't
you try nothing.

I need a drink of water.

Rack ain't here.

He's out hunting for fresh meat.

Do you need his permission to
throw me the water bottle there?

Well, all right.

You going to mend?

Well, I'd have
mended a lot faster

if he'd taken it
easier with that knife.

Yeah, Rack likes to cut.


We get to Texas, Rack's
gonna let me shoot you.

Then I can wear that badge.

What are you so anxious
to wear a badge for?

To feel like somebody.

Folks think you're important
when you wear a badge.

How come you're
not wearing it now?

Well, Rack won't let me.

Yeah, he, he decides
things around here.

Yeah, he sure beats
you up a lot, doesn't he?

Well, I wanted the badge,

but he says I ain't
smart enough to wear it...

Before we get to Texas anyway.

You were smart enough
to shoot me, weren't you?


Smart enough to
take me prisoner?

Yeah, I was, wasn't I?

You sure were.

You know...

You know, I got an idea that
you're probably a whole smarter

than Rack's given
you credit for.

You do?

You bet I do.

I'll show you how
you can prove it, too.

You will?


Now, now, listen.

If you just...

Wait a minute, wait a minute.

I leave you to guard a man,

I don't expect you to
get friendly with him.

Well, I-I wasn't doing nothing.

We're just, we're just talking.

Just seems like I got to beat
on you to learn you anything.

- Don't it?
- No, no.

You feel up to riding yet?

We're riding out
of here at sunup.

You'd better feel like it then,

or we'll put
another bullet in you

and leave you here.

And you're gonna sleep
tied hand and foot, Marshal.

You hear?


You gonna make
it or not, Marshal?

I'm gonna make it.

Ain't we never going to eat?

My belly feels
like it's full of teeth.

Quit your crying.

Marshal ain't crying,
now, are you, Marshal?

You see that, Augie?

Ain't had a thing to
eat since two days now.

Can't nobody keep
his strength up that way.

I'll knock both your
eyes into one socket,

you don't shut up, Augie.

I didn't mean nothing.

I know where we can
get something to eat.

Well, come on, Marshal, tell us.

Shut up, Augie.

Go ahead.

It's right down the
road here about a mile.

There's a dirt farm... They
ought to have something.

I suppose you want to ride up
there and fetch it for us, huh?

I could do that, yeah.

Sure, you could, and they'd
be glad to help you out...

Food... a gun,
anything you need.

No, they don't know me.

They're new around here.

I just rode by the other day.

But you just figured they'd be
glad to help out a U.S. Marshal.

They might.

Well, I'll tell you
what I'm going to do.

I'm gonna save you the trouble.

I'm gonna find out for you
what them folks think of the law.

What do you mean, Rack,
what are you gonna do?

I'm going down there
myself, wearing this, of course.

Now, Rack, that ain't fair.

I get to wear that badge.

You shut up.

They see this badge, they'll
give me anything I want.

That so, Marshal?



Let me wear it, huh?

Now, I'll ride up there and
make 'em give me some grub.

Let me wear it, huh, Rack?

Augie, I'm getting mighty sick

of your mewling about
that badge, you hear?

Leave the boy alone.

He ain't got sense
enough to be let alone.

I got sense.

You shut up and listen.

Take the marshal over there
off the road and keep hid.

You do it right

or I'll knock your head
into a peak when I get back.

You hear?


Then do it.

Go on, Marshal.

All right, hold it
right there, Marshal.

Now, you get down and
get on over there by that tree.

All right, sit down.

Getting mighty weak,
ain't you, Marshal?

You know, Augie, doesn't
seem to me like you're doing

a very good job
of convincing him.


Rack, about your being
able to think for yourself.

There ain't a
reason in the world

I couldn't have
rode to that farm.

That's right.

I could have wore that
badge just as good as him.

You sure could.

It would have looked
good on you, too.

Them people'd have really
thought I was somebody.

Augie, let me ask you something.


What do you think about the way

that Rack is always
beating on you?

Well, I don't like it.

He shouldn't do
that all the time.

How long has he been doing it?

Ever since we met up,
about two years ago.

Two years, huh?

You gonna, gonna let him go
on doing it for another two years?

Marshal, sometimes I
think I can't stand it no more.

Well, you don't have to, Augie.

Them's horses coming.


It ain't Rack; he
rode off the other way.

Well, now, now, look, Augie,
don't, don't worry about it.

You can handle it all right.

- Well, sure I can.
- Okay,

I tell you what
you do now, Augie.

You just stay low there and, uh,

I'll edge up and see if
I can get a look at 'em.

- See?
- Yeah.

Yeah, that's a good idea.

Hey, wait a minute, hold on now.

I'll shoot.

Get down, they might see you.

Get down.


Yeah, I's smart that
time, wasn't I, Marshal?


I guess Rack couldn't have
done no better than that, could he?


No, you did just
fine, Augie, just fine.

We'll camp here.

Augie... take the horses over to
the creek there and water them.

Oh, Rack, I don't want to go...

- What's that?
- Nothing, nothing...

You get stubborn with me,
you know what'll happen.

I'm doing it, ain't I?


Come on.

Seems like you was mighty
glad to get off that horse, Marshal.

I'll make it all right.

You ain't getting
too tired, are you?

I sure hate to see a strong
man like you puny up,

especially the way
I've been doctoring you.

Don't worry about me, Rack.

I'm gonna be around to see
the light go out in your eyes.

You know something, Marshal?

I sometimes get the feeling
you don't believe what I say.

About shooting me?


No, I believe that all right.

You're the kind of
man who would shoot

a wounded, unarmed
man in the back.

Oh, you're smart, eh?

Well, let me tell you something.

See, this badge did
just fine back there

with them dirt
farmers, just fine.

They gave me
everything I wanted.

Never questioned I
wasn't a real lawman.


So I don't need you no more.

I can be the lawman
that gets us back to Texas.

What do you think of that?

What are you waiting for?


You'll feel better
in the morning.

You won't feel like dying when
you see a new day coming.

Rack, Rack,


- Now, what's wrong, Augie?
- Rack.

Them horses, Rack, I was
watering 'em like you said,

and that pinto kind
of got away from me.


Well, the other two
is tied up down there,

but the pinto... he, he wandered
off and I couldn't catch him.

Now, I figured I'd better
come tell you, Rack.

Not enough sense to
water the horses, huh?

Now, I'll go after him, Rack.

You couldn't find him if he
was standing on your foot.

All right, that's enough, Rack.

You just sit down, Marshal.

You want me to put a couple
of bullets in your knees?

Now, sit down.

All right, now, you get up
here and I'll go after the horse.

You keep your eye on
that marshal, you hear me?

Go and put your gun on him.

He's got no call to
beat on me all the time.

He sure doesn't, Augie.

You know something, Augie?

If I'd have had that gun there,

I wouldn't have
let him beat you.

Why don't you give it
to me right now, huh?

You're a prisoner,
now, don't you forget.

Augie, listen to me.

You know, you could get
away from him, leave him.

Oh, Rack would
never let me do that.

He said so.

Oh, don't mind what he says.

You can think for
yourself, Augie,

you've already proved that.

Yeah, that's right.

Y-You said I was smart yourself.

Well, you are.

Now, look, yep,

I could help you get away
from him if you'd let me.

Help me?


If you'd give me that gun, I'd
help you get away from him.

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

Just think about it...

No more beatings, never again.

Well, if I did... could
I wear the badge?

Well, sure.

Now, that's a promise, Marshal.

You bet it is, it's a promise.

Well, I...

I don't know.

But I'll think about it.

He's asleep.

All right, get me
untied, will you?

Remember the badge,
now, Marshal, you promised.

That's right.

What's going on?

I cut him loose.

I mean, I was going
to cut him loose.

- You sneaky little...
- He was going to help me get away.

I am going to beat
you half to death.

- No, Rack, no. -You hear me?
- Augie, throw me the gun.

You shot him.

He's dead.

Well, we'll bury
him in the morning.

Remember the badge,
now, Marshal, you promised.

Can I put it on?

Yeah, you can put it on.

Augie, you can wear it
all the way back to Dodge.

Behind the Scenes of The Badge

John Dehner made his sixth appearance in the series through this half-hour episode, with six more appearances in full-hour episodes in the next seven years.

This half-hour Gunsmoke episode in black and white has the same title as another in the same series, The Badge, a full-hour and colored episode in Season 15, which aired in 1970.

Looking for More Gunsmoke Episodes?

Make your next movie or series night unforgettable with Gunsmoke! It is an American Western television series in the U.S. with 20 seasons airing from 1955 to 1975. The Badge is the 9th episode from Gunsmoke’s Season 6.

You can find more about any of the Gunsmoke episodes here.

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