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Caravana The Michael Malone Story (1957–1965) Online

Caravana The Michael Malone Story (1957–1965) Online
Original Title :
The Michael Malone Story
Genre :
TV Episode / Western
Year :
Directror :
Virgil W. Vogel
Cast :
Robert Fuller,John McIntire,Frank McGrath
Writer :
Gerry Day,David Richards
Type :
TV Episode
Time :
1h 15min
Rating :
Caravana The Michael Malone Story (1957–1965) Online

Coop and Charlie are in a nearby town on a Sunday to get a horse shod and find a man to drive the wagon for Nora and Julie Holland. The blacksmith suggests a young man, Michael Malone, sleeping off a drunk in his barn that rode in on a very good horse. He suspects the man might be a good worker. They find him in the midst of bad nightmare about his past. He is a priest escaping the death of his sister and her baby during childbirth because he would not sanction the killing of either one to save the other one. He agrees to take the job and is on the hook for the pay after he and Charlie fall through the window of the closed saloon. Charlie and Michael return to the train meeting Julie Holland on the way back. Michael settles in with Julie and Nora okay with Julie taking a great interest in Michael and his horse. The Hollands are often helped by neighbors Ben and Beth Mitchell. They are a young married couple with Beth expecting returning home to her father's ranch. Beth is very unhappy...
Episode cast overview:
Robert Fuller Robert Fuller - Cooper Smith
John McIntire John McIntire - Christopher Hale
Frank McGrath Frank McGrath - Charlie Wooster
Terry Wilson Terry Wilson - Bill Hawks
Denny Miller Denny Miller - Duke Shannon (as Scott Miller)
Michael Parks Michael Parks - Michael Malone
Dick York Dick York - Ben Mitchell
Joyce Bulifant Joyce Bulifant - Julie Holland
Nellie Burt Nellie Burt - Nora Holland
Armand Alzamora Armand Alzamora - Dr. Perez
Chuck Courtney Chuck Courtney - Paul
John Bryant John Bryant - The Doctor
Tim Graham Tim Graham - Blacksmith
Judi Meredith Judi Meredith - Beth Mitchell

This episode was originally scheduled to air on November 25, 1963 but it was preempted by the coverage of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy three days earlier.

User reviews



Needing a driver for grandmother Nellie Burt and granddaughter Joyce Bulifant, Robert Fuller hires Michael Parks who plays the title role in this Wagon Train story. Parks is quite the boozer and he and Frank McGrath strongly object to the Blue Laws that the town Parks is in has now past. Costs a bit to get both of them back on the Wagon (Train).

There's another couple traveling on the Wagon Train, young marrieds Dick York and Judi Meredith. York was kind of adopted the way Don Corleone adopted Tom Heggen. Only York is now married to his only child and she's with child now. They're returning home. Meredith is one headstrong young woman and actually resentful of the way York was favored by dad who owned a Ponderosa like spread in California.

York and Meredith have a secret, but it's nothing to the one that Parks is carrying. In the end Parks helps York and Meredith get through a crisis and finds some salvation for himself.

It's a good turn that Michael Parks gives, some elements fro;m the Otto Preminger film The Cardinal found in this episode.


In order to discuss this episode I'll have to spoil a major plot point up front. The guest character, played by Michael Parks, is a priest. This is not revealed until the second half of the story, and because it's supposed to be a surprise for viewers, the episode's title is not 'The Father Michael Malone Story.' In the beginning we're just supposed to know he is a man haunted by something that happened to him, and every time he hears church bells ring, he acts a bit mad.

He is hired to drive a wagon for an elderly woman (Nellie Burt) and her granddaughter (Joyce Bulifant). Gradually as he interacts with them and the members of Chris Hale's train, we learn he left the priesthood after the death of a young woman. The woman was his sister and she died in childbirth. Due to Father Malone's Catholicism and strict beliefs opposing abortion, he advised his sister to have the baby despite the fact it would be a complicated delivery and could lead to her own death. And unfortunately, it did.

So he's blaming himself and trying to figure out how he can be forgiven what's happened. It's pretty heavy handed stuff the writers are dishing up. The speeches made by Father Malone and some of the other characters are definitely meant to support the idea that abortion is wrong. Not sure what was going on in 1964 in order to legalize abortion in America, but though it was still nine years before Roe v. Wade, I'm sure strides were being made in this area. Conservative TV writers wanted to warn against the evils of that.

The writers also wanted to warn against the evils of falling in love with a priest. The old woman's granddaughter falls for handsome Father Malone during the first part of the trip, before anyone knows what his real calling is. Of course, he thinks Julie Holland is sweet and he's very fond of her. But this is a potential romance doomed before it even gets off the ground. She has to be content at the end in letting him go back to the church. We are shown he is very much a flawed man, but he is still godly. And she cannot succeed in turning him away from his vocation, or in preventing him from writing the next sermon condemning women who put their own lives ahead of the unborn.