The High Chaparral

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Third Season
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Don Sebastian and John 

Victoria with Robbins

Victoria and Buck

3.77  New Hostess in Town     Victoria, Buck, Don Sebastian

Victoria is kidnapped by outlaws and forced to work as a cantina waitress.
Written by Walter Black         Directed by Virgil W. Vogel

Story Line:  Enroute to the Montoya Ranch with a large sum of cash for a cattle purchase, Victoria and Buck are overpowered by bandits Bates and Gideon who take her to an outlaw refuge and leave Buck stranded in the desert. Made to work as a cantina hostess for town boss Robbins, the stunning Victoria soon has the entire outlaw band vying for her attentions. She decides to play one man against the other in a plan to escape.

Guest Stars: 

Jim Davis 
as Robbins

Ed Bakey 
as Bates

Todd Martin 
as Gideon


Mills Watson 
as Greer
Paul Fierro 
as Domingo


Natvidad Vacio 
as Major Domo

Character Highlights:  The relationship between Buck and Victoria is the focus of this episode that walks a fine line, but never crosses it, in terms of their affection for each other.  The opening has some great interchanges between them where Buck shows great patience with her argumentative chatter.  The secondary story line of John and Don Sebastian awaiting their arrival is also good as Blue and Mano try to run interference between their bickering.  Victoria does a convincing job of going along with her role as a cantina hostess while playing the bandits off against each other.  Both Buck and Victoria are more concerned about the other's safety than their own as they plot their escape.  Victoria is pretty cute both in her hostess outfit and in the cowboy disguise.

Complete Episode Synopsis:  John, Manolito and Blue are at the Rancho Montoya for a cattle sale, leaving Buck and Victoria to follow in a couple of days to bring the money for the sale with them. In order to attract less attention to them, John orders that Buck only accompany his wife on the trip south. The plan backfires when their carriage is waylaid by thieves and Victoria is kidnapped.

Victoria finds herself in the clutches of a town run and populated by bandits. The two men that kidnapped her, Bates and Gideon, surrender half of what they claim they stole from Buck and give it to their boss, according to the gang rules. The boss of the outfit, Robbins, takes a liking to Victoria, and being unaware of her identity, decrees that she should work in the cantina. Knowing that she must stay alive, "Vicky" acts the part as much as she can, much to the interest of Robbins. Matters complicate when Buck, tracking Victoria on foot through difficult terrain, stumbles into the town. To keep the bandits from finding out her true identity, she throws her arms around Buck, proclaiming that he is her husband.

Back at the Montoya ranch, John and Don Sebastian are finding it impossible to keep from bickering with each other over trivial matters. John is beginning to worry about his wife, while the wily Don Sebastian is worried about his money. It is decided that they will begin searching the following morning, once it has been determined that Victoria and Buck are actually late.

Robbins throws Buck into the back room of the cantina under guard while he decides what to do with him. The few times that Victoria and Buck can talk are used to try to form their own plan for escape. Victoria approaches Bates and Gideon for their help, since she knows that they have held back most of the stolen money from Robbins. They agree to help her and Buck escape until Robbins also approaches them. He has plans of his own for Victoria, and he proposes to pay them two hundred dollars to take Buck out and kill him. Bates and Gideon chortle privately about how well it will work out for them.

In his cell, Buck finally comes up with a plan that he and Victoria can work out themselves. She lures Bates into Buck's cell, where he is promptly knocked out. Victoria switches into Bates' clothes, then the two slowly make their way toward the livery stable. After a brief tussle with Robbins and Gideon, they ride out of town and are met on the trail by John and a party from the Rancho Montoya. John gratefully accepts his wife back, and after stringing Don Sebastian along for a while, Buck restores the cattle money to the delighted Old Lion.  (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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