It's the day before Thanksgiving, when all through
the ranch, Victoria wants a turkey -- plain and simple. Only there aren't any to
be had ... John argues that the wild turkeys are as "tough as tripe"
and the only rancher raising domesticated turkeys is Fergus McLeish, a nearby
rancher with whom John is feuding.. In John's mind, this means that Thanksgiving
is going to feature beef as the main dish, but Victoria begs Buck and Blue to somehow find her the real thing when they go to Tucson. Buck gives
her a wink and together with Manolito, riding in the buckboard so they can pick up
supplies, set off in search of their "holy grail."
Buck gives Victoria a wink,
they will do their best to find her a turkey.
Perlita insists on her
sharing her affections with Mano.
When the boys do get
to town, however, Mano decides to find some trouble while the
other boys look for a turkey. After a brief encounter with
Carlos Mendoza, who accuses Mano of making love to Carlos'
fiancée during his absence, Manolito spends all his money to get
Carlos drunk and land him in jail ... enabling Mano to once
again visit Carlos' intended, Perlita Flores. Perlita, on the
other hand, doesn't care who she makes love to -- Carlos or
Manolito -- as long as she is given a present. Realizing he
won't gain access to any of her favors without a gift, and
having spent all of his money trying to make Carlos "drunk and
disorderly," Mano goes off in search of Buck and Blue, who are
trying to win a turkey in a turkey shoot.
While many folks -- including a
poor settler and his family -- have to drop out of the contest because of the
cost, Buck and Blue give it a try but get beaten by their old buddy, Bart
Mano, who arrives late at the contest, then challenges Bart to a shoot-off,
betting twenty dollars (which he doesn't have) against the turkey Bart has won.
By some miracle, Mano wins the bet ... and then tries to borrow money off his
friends so he can buy Perlita a dress. They don't have the necessary funds, but
Mano talks the shopkeeper into changing the Chaparral supply order so he can
have the dress instead.
Blue gives the turkey shoot
his best shot.
|Mission accomplished, Mano
takes the buckboard -- with the caged turkey sitting in the
back -- and returns to Perlita's home to give her the dress
and receive his rewards, not realizing that Carlos has been
released from jail. Carlos, eager to get even with Mano,
sees the unattended buckboard and rides off with it, taking
the precious turkey with him.
Mano chases after the
Carlos rides away with the prized turkey.
Steven McLeish doesn't take
kindly to the Chaparral men's desire to get a turkey.
meantime, John, who hates disappointing his wife, decides to try
bargaining with McLeish to acquire a turkey. Taking Sam and the
boys with him, he visits the McLeish ranch but is ordered off
the premises. On their way back to Chaparral, they spot Carlos
racing across the desert in the stolen buckboard and pursue it,
delighted when the cage containing the turkey falls off the
The men pounce on the
turkey and are nearly ready to rejoice when Fergus McLeish and
his sons, Steven and Robbie, ride in, accusing John of stealing
the turkey because one of theirs is missing. Fortunately for the
Cannons, Buck, Blue and Mano ... all riding borrowed mounts of
questionable lineage ... come up behind McLeish and persuade him
and his sons to go on their way. While Mano struggles to explain
to John how the buckboard ended up being stolen, the boys
realize that Pedro, who was originally holding the turkey, no
longer has it.
Buck comes up behind the
McLeishes, relieving them of their "weepons".
The Carter family gives
thanks for the heavenly gift of a turkey.
The boys frantically search the desert for
the missing bird, but have to give up the search when they finally find the
turkey in the presence of the Tucson settler who was too poor to buy his
children a real Thanksgiving dinner. John, not having the heart to deprive them
of the turkey, insists that it doesn't belong to them and they leave it with the
family. Pedro, however, who has been blamed for the mess, has been off on his
own, trying to find the turkey himself, and does find one ... but it belongs to
Chief Koso and his small band of Apaches, who took the bird from the McLeish
farm. Pedro trades them his broken rifle for
the bird and rides home to Chaparral with it, thrilling Victoria and the rest of
his family with his amazing discovery.
The next day, the entire ranch sits down for Thanksgiving dinner but are
treated to many more blessings as unexpected visitors keep dropping by. Perlita,
wanting to return the buckboard that her fiancée stole from Chaparral, is
invited by Mano and Pedro (also her occasional boyfriend) to join them for
dinner. Bart Kellogg, deciding to drop by, is invited to dinner by Buck ... and
McLeish, who comes over with his sons to apologize to Big John for having
called him a thief, is invited to sit down at the table as well.
Dinner gets underway with a
Dinner is interrupted yet
again, this time
by Chief Koso and friends.
Most fitting of all,
of course, is when Chief Koso and his band of Apaches show up,
angry that they were traded a broken fire stick for their sacred bird. John then makes peace
with them by inviting them to wipe off their war paint and stay for dinner. So,
with the largest social gathering at Chaparral ever, Victoria has her
"dream" Thanksgiving dinner at last! (Synopsis by Brenda