Bonanza (1959–1973)
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The Duke 

The Cartwrights challenge an arrogant and cruel British prizefighter, the Duke, and his alcoholic manager to a bout with John Heenan (the Benicia Boy), after the Cartwrights' meek friend ... See full summary »


Robert Altman


William R. Cox (teleplay) (as William Cox), Theodore Ferro (story) | 1 more credit »


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Episode cast overview:
Lorne Greene ... Ben Cartwright
Pernell Roberts ... Adam Cartwright (credit only)
Dan Blocker ... Eric 'Hoss' Cartwright
Michael Landon ... Joseph 'Little Joe' Cartwright
Maxwell Reed ... Clarence 'The Duke of London' Simpson
Randy Stuart ... Marge Fuller
J. Pat O'Malley ... Harry Simpson
Jason Evers ... J.D. Lambert
Ray Teal ... Sheriff Roy Coffee
Al Christy Al Christy ... Bartender Joe


The Cartwrights challenge an arrogant and cruel British prizefighter, the Duke, and his alcoholic manager to a bout with John Heenan (the Benicia Boy), after the Cartwrights' meek friend J.D. gets pulverized by the Duke in a bar-fight. J.D. is adored by saloon girl Marge, but he has been too shy to return her affections. While the Cartwrights wait to see if Heenan will actually take the bout and come from San Francisco, the Duke pursues Marge and assaults her when she rebuffs him. When the manager comes to Marge's rescue, he too is beaten up by the Duke (who, it turns out, is the manager's brother). Infuriated by all this, Hoss Cartwright himself challenges the Duke, and knocks him out in the fourth round of a bare-knuckle fight refereed by Sheriff Roy Coffee. The Duke and his brother-manager reconcile in the humility of defeat, then learn that the Benicia Boy will accept the proposed bout, but only the Duke comes to San Francisco. The Duke apologizes to all he has offended while in ... Written by Box of Daylight

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Release Date:

11 March 1961 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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User Reviews

An interesting tale that was enjoyable to watch.
6 February 2017 | by kfo9494See all my reviews

This episode begins as we see a hired-hand from the Cartwright spread named JD Lambert which has fallen for a saloon type woman named Marge. JD is really shy and Marge has been trying to prod him into a loving relationship. The shy and naive JD is trying his best to win her heart but it seems he does not get all the hints that Marge is throwing.

The next characters that enter the story are a professional fighter called 'The Duke of London' and his wild dressed barker, Harry Simpson. The Duke, who is rather annoying to everyone he meets, has had Harry place a sign that says they will give $500 dollars to anyone that can defeat the Duke. The Duke also runs into Marge and makes eyes for the young woman. Yet, Marge wants nothing to do with him as she prefers JD.

That evening when JD is taking Marge back to her room, they run into The Duke. A fight breaks out and JD is severely injured by the fighter. Now it will be up to Ben, Hoss and Joe to stop the prize fighter and also get JD and Marge to realise they were made for each other.

There are a couple of background stories that will put a twist on the plot which made for an interesting story. But the real entertaining part of the show is when Hoss and Joe interact with each other during the episode. These humorous exchanges will be a product of the show for years to come. This may have not been the best episode of the lot but was one that was entertaining from beginning to end.

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