The High Chaparral

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Second Season
Plot and Character Highlights

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Denny Miller as Kolos in
"A Way of Justice"

Cable and Mitch try to talk Maude
into opening the safe deposit box.

Blue, unhappy about being left behind after Mano goes in search of John.
(Scene has been cut in recent broadcasts.)

2.42  A Way of Justice               Buck, Blue, Mano
John Cannon is accused of killing the daughter of a Mexican sheepherder and is condemned to death unless steep ransom is paid.
Teleplay by B.W. Sandefur    Story by Warren Garfield, Alan L. Honaker and B.W. Sandefur    Directed by Joseph Pevney

Story Line: Escaped convicts Mitch, Cable, and Kolos accidentally kill the girl while heading for Tucson to reclaim stolen money. They escape the sheepherders by forcing John to change into the prison clothing of the inarticulate Kolos. John is captured and condemned to death, but Manolito promises money for John's release. Buck and Billy Blue race the time deadline to rescue John and Mano.

    Guest Stars:

Denny Miller
as Kolos

Antony Carbone
as Mitch

Mills Watson
as Cable

Kathleen Freeman
as Maude

Frank De Kova
as Aguirre

Joaquin Martinez
as Luis

Fernando Pereria (left)
as Rodriguez
(Scene has been cut in recent broadcasts.)

Rosa Turich
as Mamacita

Character Highlights: Excellent character dynamic episode with Buck clearly in charge throughout. Buck does an instant, blood chilling change from jokester to nearly frozen in fear when he first sees that Kolos is wearing Johnís clothes, knowing what that is likely to mean. After initially losing his temper with him, he becomes calm and calculating in his mission to find John. Mano follows Buckís lead, but Blue has more difficulty understanding Buckís actions. Excellent scene where Mano prefers to go alone to track Johnís captors and Blue demands to go along. Mano defers authority to Buck who tells Blue that Mano is right. Blue does an excellent job of stonily exhibiting his rage toward Buck, twice ignoring his directive to get firewood, while Buck gently holds his ground. Good interaction also between Mano and John at the camp where they are held captive.  Victoria is not present in this episode.

Complete Episode Synopsis

In their search for food and clothing, three escaped jailbirds from the Yuma prison, Mitch, Cable, and Kolos, descend upon a small lean-to used by a Mexican family. The largest of the three, Kolos, is commissioned to go into the camp and get some food. What he finds is a frightened girl who runs from the Swede. The acknowledged leader of the three, Mitch, chases the girl to the edge of a precipice. When he advances on her with a knife in his hand she steps backward and falls to her death.  Mitch then tells Kolos, a simple man knowing little English, that the law says that he is responsible for the girl's death. He doesn't understand why, but Kolos accepts it because Mitch tells him it is true.

Cable, Mitch, and Kolos plot their
approach to the Mexican camp.

Kolos is dressed in John's clothes
to go to Tucson.

A little later, attracted by his campfire, the three find John Cannon preparing to bed down for the night. He is alone, and again Kolos is sent to ask for food. While Kolos is distracting John, Cable clubs him in the head. They exchange Kolos' prison garb for John's clothing, and give Kolos the key to a Wells Fargo strongbox.  Then they send him to Tucson to fetch back the loot that they had stashed there before they were sent to prison. After Kolos leaves, Mitch and Cable build John's fire higher so that the Mexicans searching for the girl's killer will see it and investigate.
Kolos arrives in Tucson in high spirits, eager to do all that Mitch told him to do. However, Maude, the keeper of the Wells Fargo boxes, does not recognize Kolos as the owner of the box, and although he has the key, she refuses to let him open it. Meanwhile, Buck, Manolito and Blue are in town waiting to meet up with John.  When they spot John's horse outside the Wells Fargo office Buck heads in to see him but is met instead by a stranger in John's clothes. Kolos overpowers Buck and makes his escape out the front door, knocking Mano over in the process.  Buck alerts Blue to the situation and he knocks Kolos off John's horse with a sack of grain.

Buck confronts Kolos wearing John's clothes while Maude refuses Kolos the cash box.

Blue is angry with his uncles for refusing
to let him follow his father's kidnappers.

They initially hold him in a jail cell, but it soon becomes apparent that Kolos is more confused than dangerous, and Buck decides that the best way to find John is to try to win Kolos' trust.  They drop the charges when Kolos agrees to take them to John.  When they arrive at the camp where Kolos left John, there is no one there.  Mano suspects he may be with some gypsy sheepherders whose tracks he has found leading away.  Over Blue's objections, Mano and Buck decide that Mano should follow the trail alone.


 As they settle in to wait for Mano's return, Buck continues to work on winning Kolos' trust and discovers that he cannot even close his hand to make a fist.  That night, when Mitch and Cable sneak into the camp, they retrieve the key to the strongbox from Kolos but refuse to take him with them. He realizes that they are not really his friends, and discloses everything to Buck, Blue and Manolito.

Buck discovers Kolos cannot
close his hand.

John and Mano are both held captive
by the sheepherders.

Manolito has returned after finding John in the camp of the sheepherders, who are holding him for the murder of the girl. They are demanding the $15,000 they believe the convicts stole and have hidden somewhere by noon of the next day or they will kill John for the murder of the girl.  Manolito returns to their camp to try to buy more time and assure them that the Cannon family will pay the money. He is promptly tied up with John.


Buck, Blue and Kolos head to Tucson for the cash in the strongbox and find Mitch and Cable taking the money from the Wells Fargo box.  They try to escape but are captured by Buck, Blue, and Kolos. There is $15,000 of cash in the box, so they bring it and the two convicts to the gypsy camp. The gypsies immediately decide that Kolos, not John, is the real killer of the girl, but Buck demonstrates that Kolos is unable to grasp the knife that was found next to the girl. Cable, the third of the convicts, then concurs and reveals that the knife belongs to Mitch and he was responsible for her death.

Blue rushes to release John and Mano
from captivity.

Buck reveals that he still has the ransom money after all.

The group is allowed to go, except for Mitch. On the ride home, Buck puts John's mind to rest about their spending government money to ransom him, as he had switched saddle bags with the gypsies. The money is safe, and Kolos' future looks bright with new understanding and new friends.

(Synopsis by Lisa McKenzie)


Much of this material, including the Story Line descriptions, comes from The High Chaparral Press Kit released in 1971. The Character Highlights were written by Charlotte Lehan.  The Episode Synopses were written by members of the HC Discussion Group and are attributed at the end of each one.
Especially good portrayals of these characters

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