Original air date Oct 1, 1963
Directed by Leon Benson
Written by Andy White
Richard Egan as Jim Redigo
Elena Verdugo as Gerry
Roger Davis as Mike
Rudy Solari as Frank Martinez
Mina Martinez as Linda Martinez
Don Diamond as Arturo
Peter Brown as Johnny
Rchard Evans as Davy
Ray Kuter as Vulture
Nesdon Booth as Hogan
Redigo was a short-lived (13 weeks) half-hour spin-off of the more ambitious one-hour Empire in which Richard Egan played Jim Redigo, the foreman of the Garrett ranching empire. Empire, which also starred Terry Moore, Anne Seymour, Ryan O'Neal and Charles Bronson lasted only one season (1962-1963).
In this episode Peter Brown plays Johnny, a modern day cattle rustler.
He works rounding up cattle so they can be butchered on the spot and the carcasses loaded into refrigerated trucks. Whatever he "earns" he mostly loses at poker played under the influence of alcohol. He's brought along his only family, younger brother Davy, when the rustlers he works for hit the Redigo spread and butcher prime breeding stock into hamburgers and ribs.
Peter's character is more of a seedy loser than a truly evil bad guy. He's the kind of guy who makes big plans but expects to carry them out when the cards turn his way, not through hard work. The role was something of a departure for Peter Brown at the time and we'd bet he was originally up for the role of the younger brother. Richard Evans as Davy plays the kind of coming of age part that Peter played so well until he was cast in Laredo. Peter may have had more fun playing against type, and besides, he got to ride the horse.
Our first scene in this episode is the bloody butcher. When Redigo flies over the site of the butchery in a helicopter, Johnny is quickly paid off and told where to meet for the next operation. On the way out, he decides to take and sell Bull Rojo, the blooded bull of the title.
Driving the truck and trailer to nearby Mesa, Johnny emphasizes the importance of family and his intention to sell the bull for thousands so he can send Davy to college. He figures Davy's book smart and he's not. He doesn't want Davy to end up a no-account. Davy is not comfortable being a thief.
But when they get to Mesa, Johnny heads immediately for the local poker hall and gets in a game. Instead of selling the bull for big bucks, he sells it to a creep named Vulture for only $50 so he can get back in the card game. In the meantime, Redigo has come to town looking for his bull. He stays at the local hotel run by Gerry, (who passes for a love interest in early 1960s television).
In Redigo, the title character ran his own prosperous, albeit less grand, cattle ranch in 1960s New Mexico.
Davy, hearing Johnny sell the bull to Vulture, decides to take the bull back to Redigo. He walks Rojo out to some forsaken place, ties him up and goes to the Redigo barn to get him some feed. When he's caught in the barn, he claims he's just looking for a place to sleep. He gives the name John David, but doesn't fool anyone. By this time, the rest of the gang has been captured and they know that only brothers Johnny and Davy haven't been rounded up. Redigo takes Davy in, gives him a good meal, a place to stay and a taste of family life. As this is only a half hour drama, that's enough to fully confirm his decision to go straight. Davy leaves early the next morning to bring Rojo back.
After Davy took the bull, Johnny and Vulture got into a fight outside the Poker Palace. Vulture had a gun. In the fight, a shot goes off. Johnny runs off with the gun, not knowing whether Vulture has been shot or even killed. He tracks Davy all night (in a feat of tracking worthy of Chad Cooper's Laredo partner, Joe Riley) and ends up at the place where the bull is tethered shortly after Davy gets there. He demands that Davy go with him. When Davy argues that the bull will die with no food and water, Johnny decides to solve the problem by shooting him. When Redigo and Mike arrive in their helicopter, Davy sides with them and Johnny is captured.
Redigo comes through for Davy, making sure that he does his time on a prison farm where he can learn about animal husbandry just as though he was in college. Johnny is apparently doing hard time in a less cushy environment. In one short evening, Redigo has become the father figure Davy never had.
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