116 "Bat Masterson"
(Original Air Date: February 22, 1997)

Written by Dusty Kay; Directed by Rick Wallace; (as "fanscribed" by Janet)

Pictures for "Bat Masterson"

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[Cat meows]

[newspaper thuds]

Scene: Gary's room at the Blackstone. He gets up and retrieves the paper from the lobby. Cat trots into the room. Headline: Elevator disaster.

Chuck: (Opening Monologue) If there's a golden rule in the world today, it's this -- ignore thy neighbor, which, roughly translated, means "stay out of my space." Face it -- it's every man for himself, with, of course, the occasional exception.

Gary: Hey, hold the elevator! Hold it, hold it. (Runs up to the elevator. Keeps the door from closing by leaning on it.)

Chuck's Monologue: Meet the last Good Samaritan.

Gary: Everybody off. (Panting with the exertion of running across the lobby)

Passenger: What?

Gary: Between this floor and the next, this elevator's going to get stuck. (Points at each passenger as he speaks.) You're a company president, and you're a claustrophobic actress. You're in a hurry because you've got to get to the men's room. You're going to miss a board meeting. Because of that, your company's going to be sold, and the stock is going to crash, wiping out thousands of small investors. And you, you're going to go on stage tonight and you're going to forget all your lines, and you -- you're going to make everything very, uh, unpleasant for everyone, so get off. Well, get off!

(All three passengers rush to get off the elevator.)

Man: Jerk.

Gary: Thank you. Hey -- (Gary steps inside the elevator and unfolds his newspaper. Elevator door closes as Gary checks his paper)

[Pounding on elevator door]

Gary: Anybody out there? Hey! (Elevator bell dings as the indicator light flashes between floors.)

(Headline in Gary's paper now reads: Man trapped in elevator 5 hours.)

Scene: Window booth in restaurant. Gary & Chuck sitting having breakfast.

Chuck: When are you going to learn? Sometimes it's better to just leave things alone the way they are. Gar, it's time to face facts. You have a severe problem.

Gary: And what is that?

Chuck: You care too much. It's clouding your judgment, not to mention it's driving me nuts.

(Waitress brings food. Gary reaches for butter and butters his toast.)

Gary: This wouldn't have anything to do with money would it?

Chuck: Gar, you've got to face reality, okay? You can't fix everything. Paper or not, things go wrong every day, and somehow the world survives.

Gary: Well, that's easy for you to say. (Looks up at Chuck.)

Chuck: Because I'm sane. I have this theory about you. That you have a gene missing -- the one that makes you see how things really are.

Gary: How's that?

Chuck: It's a jungle out there. It's a dog-eat-dog world. Survival of the fittest. People are animals. Think about it.

(Gary looks out window and sees man stealing cyclist's bike.)

Gary: Hey!

(Jumps up from the table and rushes out the door.)

Chuck: See what I mean?

Gary: Hey, get off the bike. Let go, jerk!

Man: What do you think you're doing?

(Thief hits Gary in the jaw, knocking him down. Chuck comes running out and helps him up.)

Chuck: You all right, buddy?

Gary: What do you think? (Holding back of right hand to his mouth.)

Chuck: See? You're never going to learn, are you? What is that?

(Looks up to see a man on horseback chasing the bike thief. Bonanza theme plays during the chase. Car horns honk. Car squeals to a stop to avoid hitting horseman. Thief stops abruptly when the horse and rider stop in front of him. Thief runs off.)

Chuck: I don't believe it.

Man: You all right? Better than he, I'll wager. And, you, how about that jaw?

Gary: It's fine. (Holds hand to jaw.)

Man: You took quite a shot. From down the street when I saw your noble efforts come to naught, I borrowed this steed and came in pursuit. (Fusses with horse's bridle with his right hand and holds cane in left hand while he talks. Camera switches back and forth between them.)

Gary: Oh, thanks.

Man: Don't mention it, sir. It was the least I could do being a lawman myself.

Chuck: You a cop?

Man: No, no, not at the moment, sir, though I have worn a badge in my day. Oh, Masterson's the name. William Masterson. Call me Bat. And you?

Gary: Uh, Gary Hobson. This is Chuck. Fishman.

Chuck: Did you say Bat Masterson?

Bat: Yes, sir.

Chuck: As in the cowboy from the old west? The sheriff of Dodge City?

Bat: Ah, he's heard of me. Probably thought I was dead, no doubt. Well, now, gentlemen, shall we return horse and wheel to their owners? Come along, girl. Well done. That's a good girl.

Chuck: Ha ha ha. He thinks he's Bat Masterson.

Scene: Crowded bar. The guys are seated at a table. Bat raises his glass in a toast.

Bat: To valor.

Chuck: Whatever you say. (Raises his bottle.)

Bat: Wyatt Earp said that courage was 90% conviction and 10% plain foolishness. Well, then, Wyatt said many things in his time, as you probably know.

Chuck: So you've read a lot about Wyatt.

(Gary puts his mug down.)

Bat: Read about him? I knew him. I was privileged to enjoy his friendship.

Chuck: And that was what, like 100 years ago or so?

Bat: More or less.

Chuck: Gar, get the net

Bat: What was that? Uh, nothing. Mr. Masterson –

Bat: Oh, no. Bat. Bat.

Chuck: Bat.

Gary: Bat.

Bat: Bat.

Chuck: Forgive me for saying so, (Puts glass down.) but it seems to me that you're not old enough to -- to have ridden with Wyatt?

Bat: Yes. You're not the first to notice that.

Chuck: I bet, Bat.

Bat: I appreciate your skepticism. Truth be told, most folks think I'm... (Taps right temple with finger) Ha ha ha. Ha ha ha. They, of course, wonder about the derby and the stick.

Gary: And when they ask you about the derby and the stick, what is it that you tell them?

Bat: The truth. Life is full of improbables. Who's to say what is or isn't? You know, somehow, I sense that you in particular would understand that. Am I correct?

Chuck: Are you nuts? Look, I don't want to pop your balloon or anything, but this whole thing is just a bit bizarre.

Bat: Am I correct?

Gary: Ha ha. I-I –

Bat: A trip to the gents, then I'm heading homeward. Gentlemen, I've enjoyed our little chat.

Chuck: I got this.

Bat: Well, thank you, sir.

Chuck: Okay, Gar, let's get out of here. (Gets up from stool to leave. Gary grabs his right arm.)

Gary: Where are you going?

Chuck: As far away from this cuckoo as possible. (Grabs his coat)

Gary: Wait a minute.

Chuck: The guy's out of his mind. His elevator doesn't go all the way up to the top.

Gary: There's something special about this guy

Chuck: Don't start, all right? He's not your problem.

Gary: I'm going with him.

Chuck: Where?

Gary: He's going to go home. I'll go with him. I'll make sure he gets there okay.

Chuck: Okay, fine, you do that, but, uh, please just take my advice, huh? Get out of Dodge...(Looks back & forth.)

Scene: Cab pulls up in front of large building. Traffic passes by. Gary & Bat exit the cab.)

Bat: Now. Here we are -- home. Just temporarily, of course.

Cab Driver: The Wilkes. It's a loony bin, right? (Takes money for the fare from Bat.)

Bat: Keep the change. See what I have to put up with?

Gary: How long have you lived here?

Bat: Almost 10 years. Shall we go in? (Puts hand on Gary's shoulder to usher him in.) Come on. (Scene: Interior of front lobby. Woman in surgical scrubs passes by. Elderly woman sits on bench inside the door to their left. Woman's voice is heard over the PA system.)It's not palatial, as you can see, but it has its amenities. A dignified quiet.

Man: You.

Bat: Ah, Jonathan.

Jonathan: Been out again. Where have you been?

Bat: Why, was I missed? Did I have visitors?

Jonathan: Yeah. The Lone Ranger and Tonto. You sneak out on me again, and I am going to lock you up. You understand me?

Bat: May I remind you, my good man, that my sojourn here is entirely voluntary.

Jonathan: Yeah, that's great. (Bat grabs Jonathan's arm and applies pressure until cracking sound is heard.) Just let go.

(Woman approaches from another room. Walks up to Bat smiling.)

Barbara Feinstein: Jonathan, Mr. Murphy needs help in the kitchen. I'll see Sheriff Masterson to his room.

Jonathan: Crazy coot. (walks away)

Bat: Ah, Lillie.

Barbara Feinstein: Welcome home, Bat. We were worried about you.

Bat: Miss Langtry, permit me to introduce Mr. Hobson, a fellow dabbler in the law. Miss Langtry is the proprietor of this establishment and a dear friend as well. (Turns toward Gary as he introduces him.)

Barbara Feinstein: Mr. Hobson. (Reaches to shake Gary's hand.)

Gary: Miss Langtry?

Barbara Feinstein: Feinstein will do. Barbara Feinstein. Sheriff, I wonder if I might have a moment with Mr. Hobson. It's a matter of some importance.

Bat: Feel free. I'll wash off the dust. Then later, we'll share a glass of brandy to stem the cold.

Gary: Of course.

Bat: Excuse me. (Bat tips his hat and departs.)

Gary: He's quite a character.

Barbara Feinstein: In my office now. (Scene changes to doctor's office. Barbara & Gary enter. She closes the door behind them. Walks over to her desk and indicates a chair for Gary to sit in.) What was it this time?

Gary: I beg your pardon?

Barbara Feinstein: A stolen car? A barroom brawl?

Gary: He borrowed a horse, actually. Everything turned out all right, really. Who is he? I mean, other than...

Barbara Feinstein: Who he is is none of your business. The question is who are you?

Gary: Look, I'm not a bad guy.

Barbara Feinstein: You're just a concerned citizen, is that it?

Gary: You might say that.

Barbara Feinstein: If that's the case, you can fulfill your civic duty by leaving. Sideshow's over. (Slaps desk and walks to the door.)

Gary: You don't have much faith in human nature, do you?

Barbara Feinstein: I'm a doctor, Mr. Hobson. I leave faith to the clergy. Are we done?

Scene: Gary's room at the Blackstone. Gary & Marissa are seated at his table playing cards.

Marissa: So she threw you out. Do you blame her?

Gary: That's right. Take her side.

Marissa: Well, she is a doctor. Maybe she knows what she's doing.

Gary: Maybe so. Maybe not.

Marissa: Why this sudden curiosity about someone you've never met before?

Gary: I don't know. It just doesn't add up. I mean, I know the guy's crazy, yet somehow he's -- he's not.

Marissa: Well, that clears things up.

Gary: What do you suppose happens to someone to make him want to be someone else?

Marissa: I don't know.

Gary: Two of hearts. I do know what it's like to be told you're crazy every day.

Marissa: And that qualifies you to help?

Gary: Maybe you're right. Maybe it's none of my business.

Marissa: Probably not. Four of diamonds.

Gary: Nothing I can do about it anyway.

Marissa: Not a thing. (Plays final card.) Gin. Makes five in a row.

Gary: Yeah. (Throws his cards down in disgust.)

Scene: Bat's room at The Wilkes. Newspaper open to article with headline: Detective Murdered. Body discovered after three days. Pocket watch on chain nearby.

Bat: He's back.

Scene: Skyline Time Lapse Night to Day

[Cat meows]

[newspaper thuds]

(Headline reads Brawl leads to accidental death in pool hall.

Gary: See ya. (Gary retrieves paper & leaves.)

Scene: Lobby of the Blackstone. Gary exits the elevator. Boswell working nearby.

Boswell: Good morning.

Gary: Good morning.

Boswell: Oh, Mr. Hobson, there's someone to see you.

Bat: Morning.

Gary: What are you doing here?

Bat: Well, I thought if you're riding, maybe we'd ride together.

Gary: How did you find me?

Bat: Not a difficult task. In my day, I've tracked men for hundreds of miles without losing their trail.

Scene: Busy restaurant. Gary & Bat seated at table. Waitress brings coffee.

Gary: Why did you find me? Ah, direct and to the point. I admire that, sir. I need your assistance for a matter that requires our immediate attention.

Gary: Our attention?

Bat: The first time I laid eyes on Wyatt, I knew it was wise to align myself with such a man. I have the same instinct with you.

Gary: Look that's all great, but I'm not a lawman

Bat: So said Wyatt, and yet he was. Have you ever heard of the Clanton gang?

Gary: You mean the O.K. Corral?

Bat: The same. Blackguards, all of them. One of them has returned.

Gary: Which one?

Bat: Ike. The black sheep. My old nemesis. He's come back to town. We have to track him down.

Gary: We?

Bat: Well, if you're game.

Gary: Look, Bat, I'd love to help you out here, (shakes his right hand and looks at watch.) but I've got business I've got to tend to.

Bat: What is it?

Gary: It's kind of a fight. It's a –

Bat: My kind of action. I'll come with you.

Gary: Oh, no, no, no. Look, Bat, Dr. Feinstein, she... I mean, Miss Langtry.

Bat: Yes?

Gary: Well, she, uh... Look, I got to do this alone, you understand?

Bat: Of course. The best of luck to you, son. (Offers Gary his hand. They shake across the table.)

Gary: Well, good. Good, good, good. And the best of luck to you, Bat.

Bat: Thank you. Yes. Give me a holler if you get into trouble.

Gary: I think I already have. (Turns back to look at Bat then turns to leave.)

Scene: Busy pool hall. Two men are brawling as everyone watches. Some people cheering. One bystander is knocked down. Gary arrives in the middle of this.

Manager: Hey, hey, hey! Go easy, easy, easy! Hey, hey, easy, easy! I just fixed that table.

Gary: Why didn't someone stop this? (Indicates the brawl.)

Man: Are you nuts? Someone could get hurt.

Brawler 1: Come on, man!

Gary: Whoa, whoa, whoa. (Gets in between the two brawlers.)

Brawler 1: Keep out of it!

Gary: Don't do this. He's got a knife. He's got a knife, too. He's going to cut you up pretty bad, and you're going to go to jail.

Brawler 1: Get out of here.

(Brawlers grab Gary by the shoulders and throw him across the room. Lies still, apparently stunned as the brawlers go back to their fight. Bat enters the room.)

Bat: Well, well, well. Just what I like -- a nice friendly game.

Brawler: Who are you? I am a personal friend of that man on the floor. (Indicates Gary who is half rising from the floor. Gary shakes his head to try and clear it. Still somewhat dazed he looks up and over at Bat.)

Brawler 2: What is this, Halloween?

Brawler 1: You're Wild Bill Hickok, right?

Bat: I take that reference to the unseemly Hickok as a slur on my character. You have five seconds to take it back.

Brawler 1: You want to have a go? Hey! Ugh! (Gets hit with Bat's cane. Brawler 2 gets hit in throat.)

Bat: Gargle with saltwater. Breathe deeply, my friend. (Pats Brawler 2 on the back as he walks over to help Gary to his feet.) Now, where were we? The Clanton gang. Did I ever tell you, sir, about the time...

Scene: McGinty's. The place is busy. Chuck & Gary are seated at a table while Bat is at the bar getting a drink.

Chuck: The Clanton gang?

Gary: That's what he says. Mostly Ike, the bad one.

Chuck: You're catching it, aren't you?

Gary: Catching what?

Chuck: Whatever he's got. Look, Gar, one more piece of advice, huh? Take him home, drop him off, and then get out.

Gary: I can't do that.

Chuck: Why not?

(Camera switches back and forth between them.)

Gary: Because we're kind of -- we're-we're .. Riding together.

Chuck: Oh, my God.

Gary: Look he saved my life. (Looks over at Bat.) What am I supposed to tell him?

Chuck: How about "hasta la vista" or "happy trails"?

(Bat returns with a pitcher & starts pouring.)

Bat: Gentlemen... To friends in need.

Chuck: Oh, sure, why not?

Bat: Speaking of which -- those men in the pool hall... (Sits down at the table.) You didn't know them?

Gary: Uh, no, not exactly.

Bat: Then would you mind telling me how you knew they'd be mixing it up?

Gary: If I told you, you wouldn't believe me. (Raises his glass to drink.)

(Bat laughs.)

Chuck: That's funny?

Bat: It's so pleasant to hear someone else say it for a change.

Chuck: Yeah, gets you every time, huh? (Raises his drink to his mouth.)

Bat: In any event, it'll make a fine story for my memoirs. Miss Langtry will love it.

Gary: Are you sure that you want to tell Miss Langtry about this?

Bat: Of course. I tell her everything. Unless you'd prefer to have that pleasure yourself?

Scene: Library/Recreation Room at The Wilkes. Barbara & Gary walk in.

Barbara Feinstein: A pool hall?

Gary: He followed me.

Barbara Feinstein: That's where you spend your mornings?

Gary: No, I don't spend my mornings –

Barbara Feinstein: (Walks up to Jonathan who is with another patient.) Jonathan, where is he now?

Jonathan: In his room, keeping an eye out for Ike Clanton. (Speaks to other patient.) Come on. (Jonathan and patient leave. Barbara turns back to Gary.)

Barbara Feinstein: You're encouraging him, aren't you?

Gary: No.

Barbara Feinstein: Let me explain something I hoped you already knew. He's not really Bat Masterson, and you're not his sidekick, and Ike Clanton's been dead for a century.

Gary: Yeah, I know that.

Barbara Feinstein: Good. (Raises her hands in stop gesture then lowers.)

Gary: Why does he think he's alive?

Barbara Feinstein: You don't give up, do you?

(Starts to leave but turns back to Gary.)

Gary: I don't know why, but he trusts me. Now you tell me, maybe I can help.

Barbara Feinstein: And if I don't?

Gary: He's here voluntarily. You don't tell me, I'll find out for myself.

Barbara Feinstein: His real name is Mike Killebrew, and he was a cop. (Scene changes briefly to Bat staring out his window.) He was one of Chicago's best, decorated a dozen times. He had all the instincts of a man born for the job. Then one day, he made a mistake. He walked into an ambush he should have seen coming. Worse -- he brought his partner.

[Gunfire]

(White lights flash in background.)

[siren wailing]

Scene: Barbara Feinstein's office. Gary holds newsclipping about shootout in his hands. Headline reads Cop dies in bungled drug bust.

Barbara Feinstein: He recovered in time, but his partner was killed. He blamed himself. He tried to come back to the force, but his mind couldn't handle the grief. He had no family, so the department sent him here. Bat Masterson made his first appearance a short while after that.

Gary: Why Bat Masterson?

Barbara Feinstein: Sometimes a person who has lost self-esteem embraces the identity of someone he most admires. Bat Masterson was a boyhood idol of his, so that's who he chose. (Stirs coffee while Gary continues reading.) That's who he's been for the past 10 years, safe, secure... Up until two weeks ago.

(Barbara pours a cup of coffee for herself. Walks over to her desk and sits down looking at Gary.)

Gary: (Looks up.) What happened two weeks ago?

Barbara Feinstein: I don't know. He won't tell me. All I know is he's launched into this Ike Clanton fantasy. (Stops stirring coffee.) That's why he goes out every day -- to look for him.

Gary: Maybe that's the way he deals with it...

Barbara Feinstein: You a psychiatrist, Mr. Hobson? Look, you said you wanted to help. (Leans forward.) If that's true, you can, by leaving his treatment to me. Or are you willing to be responsible for what happens next?

(Gary puts clipping down and gets up from his chair.)

Gary: If you don't mind, I'd like to say goodbye. (Goes over to the door and gestures toward it. Camera switches back and forth between him and Barbara.)

Barbara Feinstein: I think it's better I do that after you're gone.

Gary: What will you say?

Barbara Feinstein: I'll tell him you ride alone.

Scene: Gary's room at the Blackstone. Cat is there. Gary unzips jacket, drops paper on the bed.

[Cat Meows]

Gary: What are you looking at? I just walked away from a man drowning.

[Cat meows]

Gary: Cowboy. (Newspaper headline reads: Berserk cowboy causes delays on rush hour subways.)

Scene: Busy El station. Bat is looking around. Gary rushes up the stairs looking for him. Spots Bat and starts running toward him.

Gary: Bat!

Bat: Clanton. (Looking around spots a Hispanic man he seems to recognize.)

Gary: Bat!

Bat: (Turns toward Gary when he hears his voice.) You're just in time. I've got him now.

Gary: Who?

Bat: Ike Clanton.

Gary: Where?

Bat: There. (Turns toward spot where he saw Hispanic man moments ago.)

Man: Next stop -- Wilson.

Bat: He's gone.

Man: Watch for the closing doors.

Bat: Open this door. Open this door, I demand in the name of the law. Stop! Stop! The man is mine. Stop! (Pounds on doors of train.)

Gary: Bat. Let him go.

Bat: I lost him. He slipped from my grasp. (Turns back and walks toward Gary.)

Gary: Look, not-not yours. Ours.

Bat: Ours? But Miss Lillie said that you prefer to ride alone.

Gary: Well, Miss Lillie was wrong.

Bat: Oh, oh, all right then. (Puts his hands on Gary's shoulders.) We'll make a plan. We'll follow him to Hell, am I right?

Gary: Yeah.

Bat: And Killebrew be--. (Makes slashing motion with hand and starts to leave. Gary stops him.)

Gary: Whoa, wait a second. Do you mean Mike Killebrew?

Bat: You know the name?

Gary: Well, yeah.

Bat: Then you know what he did.

Gary: Well, I don't –

Bat: Officer Killebrew was weak. There's no room for a man like that in our profession. Where he failed, we will succeed. Are you coming or not?

Gary: (Gary stands still until Bat turns back to him. They walk off together.) Oh, yeah. Okay.

CONTINUE TO PART 2


Many thanks to Janet for sharing her fanscription of "Bat Masterson" – Thank you!


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