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The Maverick Line Recap

A stagecoach is heading through the desert, and the driver Dutch Wilcox hears gunshots and complains that the shooter is showing off for the new owners. The robber, Rumsey Plumb, shoots a hole in Dutch's hat and Dutch complains that Rumsey could have stopped them without ruining his good hat. The new owners--Bret and Bart—look out and demand to know what's going on. Dutch introduces Rumsey and explains that Rumsey has robbed the stage a number of times already. The driver explains that they inherited the stage line from their uncle Micah.

The Maverick says that they don’t' have much money and explain that they're not interested in the line. Dutch explains that Rumsey makes his living off of the line. Bret assures Rumsey that with the land rush coming, Rumsey will be rich. Rumsey is less than impressed and has Dutch hand over the express box. The highwayman shoots it open and discovers that there's no money. After Rumsey rides off, Dutch says that Micah was too cheap to hire a shotgun guard and they continue on to the town of Snowflake.

In Snowflake, the Mavericks meet with Atherton Flayger, Micah's lawyer. Atherton reads Micah's will, and he says that to address his nephew's idleness, he's leaving them the stagecoach line. The Mavericks aren't interested in their inheritance. Polly Goodin comes in and asks if they will sell the line. The Mavericks' interest perk up at the thought of money, and Polly explains that she owns the ranch on the right of way and Micah bought the rights for ten years at $2,000 a year. She wants the money from them if they want to keep in business, but admits that she doesn't have a month. However, she offers them $1,000 a month for work. The land rush starts the next day and she intends to provide the transportation.

Polly offers the Mavericks 49% of the stock in return for the right of way and the stagecoach. Atherton says that Micha's well specifies that they have to sell the line and can't be sold. Polly leaves and Bret finds fine print in the will saying that they can't dispose of the line except for a substantial profit. The lawyer notes that Polly didn't offer them money, and the Mavericks points out that they should make over $2 million from Polly's offer, constituting a "substantial profit".

Once the Mavericks leave, Atherton calls his assistant Bandy in and has him read the will confirming that if the line is stick by a misfortune then the executor gets the line. Atherton tells Bandy to bring in Shotgun Sparks because he's planning a misfortune.

Later, Polly calls Shotgun Sparks to her hotel room. She says that she can't stand to see people hurt but wants him to wreck the line. Shotgun is glad to do it because his rates are the same, and Polly doesn't want to hear his plans. She just wants to make sure that Shotgun doesn't kill the Mavericks.

There's a knock at the door, and Shotgun offers to get rid of them. He opens the door and tells the Mavericks that Polly left the door the night before, and slams the door in their face. The Mavericks go to their stage line and find a sign on the door saying that the occupant is sleeping. They go in anyway and find Dutch, and Dutch says that he isn't driving because he's tuckered. As the Mavericks leave, Shotgun offers to drive them to the Goodin ranch and tells them to get some food while he hitches up the horses.

Atherton and Bandy come down the sidewalk and the Mavericks avoid them. The two men approach Shotgun and Atherton tells Shotgun that they want him to dispose of the Mavericks. Shotgun figures that he can make twice the money and is satisfied that he has no conflict of interest so his conscience is clear.

Once the Mavericks return, Shotgun drives the line out into the countryside. The brothers dose off, and Shotgun checks the bomb in his saddlebag. He then wakes up the Mavericks and says that it's lunch time. The Mavericks have a picnic basket with lunch, and Shotgun says that they'll all have a nice time. He has the brothers build a fire while he waters the horses. Bart points out that Shotgun is being a bit too helpful.

Sparks puts the dynamite in the coach and leads his horse off. Meanwhile, the Mavericks smell the fuse burning and go over to the stagecoach. They find the bomb and Bart tosses it away. The Mavericks take cover and the dynamite explodes in a nearby tree. Shotgun goes over to finish off the Mavericks and orders them to put their hands up. The Mavericks suggest that they have lunch and find out why Shotgun wants to blow up their only stagecoach. Shotgun isn't interested in talking, and Rumsey comes up and shoots Shotgun's hart off. The Mavericks say that they're pleased to see him, and Rumsey complains that the bomb exploding woke him up. When Bart tells Rumsey that Shotgun was going to destroy the stagecoach, Rumsey is offended that someone was blowing up his the source of his "occupation" and he doesn't know any other trade. Shotgun suggests that they have lunch and sort it out, but Rumsey refuses.

Rumsey has Bart unload the shotgun and give it to Shotgun, and tells him to ride off. Once Shotgun leaves, Rumsey tells the Mavericks to have the shipment running the ne4xt day.

Shotgun rides to the Goodin ranch and tells Polly that he hasn't destroyed the stage yet. He assures her that he'll dispose of the Mavericks when they arrive, and says that he'll blow up the stage two hours after they leave. Polly has Shotgun ride around the back, and Polly comes out to greet the Mavericks. They explain about how they can sell the line for a profit, and suggest that Polly come to Snowflake with them to end the contract. She says that there might be difficulty on the road Shotgun is on, and has them go inside.

Shotgun comes out and puts more dynamite in the stagecoach with a timer. The Mavericks come back out and Bret drives. Polly complains about the bumps and Bret invites Polly to ride on top with him. Rumsey rides up and tells them to hand over the gold dust. They explain that they stopped at the Goodin ranch and didn't have time to go back to Snowflake and get the daily shipment of gold. The Mavericks introduce hand over the express box, which is heavy because the bomb is inside of it. Rumsey orders them to ride off and they quickly leave. The highwayman shoots the box open and the bomb explodes. Polly and the Mavericks go back, and Rumsey insists that he's okay before passing out. Bret figures someone planted the bomb and Polly says that it was Shotgun. She admits that she hired him not to kill him but blow up the stage. Polly offers to explain to the Maverick that drives her into town while the other one stays with Rumsey. The Mavericks eagerly asks which one gets to go with her, and she chooses Bart. She says that Bret can ride into Snowflake once Rumsey dies, and Bart assures her that Bret is a lovely nurse and goes into Snowflake with her.

As the land rush participants line up in the streets of Snowflake, Bart and Polly arrive and go to Atherton's office. Atherton and Bandy are preparing articles of incorporation for the "Flayger Transportation Company", and Bart and Polly come in. The lawyer is surprised to see them, and confirms that Bret is okay as well. Bart and Polly say that their ride was boring except for the man with the shotgun and the dynamite. Atherton threatens to sue the Mavericks, but Bart says that Polly is the new owner. The lawyer says that he needs the contract for the right of way in Micah's handwriting and the land map showing the right of way. Polly has them with her and Bart leaves with her to have dinner while Atherton prepares the papers.

Shotgun rides into Snowflake and goes to Atherton's office to demand his payment. Atherton points out that the Mavericks aren't dead. Shotgun heard the blast and saw the smoke, and figures that the Mavericks died. Bandy comes in and says that he found a loophole, and Atherton has Shotgun wait in the outer office. The lawyer realizes that Polly's deed is worthless.

Bart and Polly come in and Shotgun is surprised to see them. He draws his shotgun on Bart and says that he can't prove anything. Atherton comes out and explains that the Goodin ranch doesn't exist legally. The Goodin grant fails to define the boundaries of the ranch and anyone can go through the land. Whoever gets there first can stake it out and claim it, and the land rush race starts the next day. Atherton calls Shotgun into his office, and Bart tells Polly that they'll hire two of the fastest horses in town and race to get Polly's land first.

Atherton tells Shotgun to enter the race, go to the Goodin ranch, and stake it in his hand. He'll pay him $500 and Shotgun agrees, and the lawyer tells him to dispose of the Mavericks if he runs into them.

Bart and Polly are unable to find a horse, and they go to see Dutch since he raises race horses. The only horse Dutch has left is his own, and Dutch says that he's going into the real estate business and no longer works for the Mavericks. The only horses the Mavericks have left are the two nags that pull the stagecoach.

The next day, Shotgun joins the race line. They spot Polly and Bret, and Polly is unable to get her horse to move. Atherton figures that they won't have any trouble because Polly and Barter are the only two that know the Goodin ranch is up for grabs, and Shotgun assures Atherton that he'll take care of them if the need arises. The race starts and Bart and Polly ride for the ranch. Bret and Rumsey see Shotgun coming and then spot the other racers behind him. They realize that it's the land rush, and spot Bart and Polly bringing up the rear. They ride over and Bart tells Bret what happened. Rumsey offers his horse, saying that it's the fastest one in the country. Bret loads up the horse and rides.

Shotgun sees Bret coming and continues riding for the ranch. Bret passes Shotgun, who draws his shotgun and opens fire. The recoil knocks him off of his horse, and mounts back up and rides. Bret arrives at the ranch and pounds in the stake with Polly's name on it, and then rides in as Shotgun arrives. Shotgun destroys Polly's stake and plants Atherton's, while Bret plants more stakes around the property. The killer opens fire on Bret, who takes cover and shoots back. He knocks a bucket on Shotgun's head and Shotgun falls into a trough. When he removes the bucket, Bret knocks him out.

Later, Polly calls in her lawyer Phineas Cox, a friend of the family. He draws up the agreement and the Mavericks sign. Bart gives Polly an address in New Orleans to send the checks, and they go to have dinner with Rumsey up on the ridge. Once they leave, Polly signs the right of way over to Phineas for $10,000.

The Mavericks eat quail with Rumsey. Phineas rides up and says that he hast to report to the president of Far Western, his principle. Now that they have the right of way, the Far Western can begin construction. The Mavericks have nothing since Polly sold the right of way. Phineas gives them a note from Polly before riding off. In the note Polly apologizes for doing what she has to. Workers begin construction, and Rumsey is thrilled to hear that a railroad is coming through... and with all of the gold dust that it will be carrying.

Written by Gadfly on Apr 21, 2019

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