Gill at Realweegiemidget Reviews is hosting The Wilhelm Scream Blogathon! A brilliant idea whose contributions can be found HERE.
The Wilhelm Scream is ubiquitous in movies and television, and as welcome and comforting as the Goofy Yell or the Roadrunner's Beep Beep. Okay. Perhaps the Wilhelm Scream isn't truly comforting because we know that someone has come to a grizzly end, but it has certainly become familiar and a welcome "aha" moment to fans.
My contribution to The Wilhelm Scream Blogathon is an episode of Maverick from its first season, The Savage Hills featuring Jack Kelly as Bart Maverick with guest star Diane Brewster as the recurring character Samantha Crawford, in the second of four episodes. The character was introduced in According to Hoyle in 1947 where "Sam" beat Bret at his own game.
Diane Brewster, Jack Kelly
THE SAVAGE HILLS
First aired: Sunday, February 9, 1958
Written by Gerald Drayson Adams
Directed by Douglas Heyes
Roy Huggins created the irreverent and Emmy-winning series Maverick in 1957 and it ran, with various actors until 1962. Our first season finds the Maverick Brothers played by James Garner (Bret) and Jack Kelly (Bart) traveling the television west gambling, doling out the wisdom of their "Old Pappy" and romancing lovely Warner Brothers contractees.
Bart Maverick wanted a good night's sleep and a hearty meal. What he got was grifter Samantha Crawford played by Diane Brewster getting Bart in a lot of trouble with Secret Service Agent Gunnerson played by Peter Whitney, some Natives in The Savage Hills, a possible Federal jail sentence.
Jack Kelly, Peter Whitney
Agent Gunnerson sums things up to an incarcerated Bart: "This girl comes to your hotel room - tries to rob you. You go for the sheriff. She hops into bed. You come back. She tells you she's a Secret Service Agent and I'm a crook. So you team up with her to rob me to get the reward. Is that the way it goes?"
Bart: "I wish I could say 'no.'"
Gunnerson: "She sure must have been a charmer."
Bart: "Dripping honeysuckle, Mr. Gunnerson."
The reward is $10,000 for some counterfeit engraving plates. Bart and Gunnerson team up with a plan to split the reward. All the while, Bart is trying to recall where he's heard the name "Samantha Crawford." But, doggone it, those Maverick boys have so many women in their lives how can they possibly remember them all!
Jack Kelly, Diane Brewster
Samantha takes the plates and jumps from a riverboat with Bart in pursuit while Gunnerson is knocked out. Attempting a cross-country route the hungry wanderers make the mistake of stealing a food pouch from a Native death lodge. They may have satiated their hunger but now they have some angry men on their trail.
Samantha proves resourceful in rescuing Bart from certain torture and this is where the Wilhelm Scream
joins the action. Clever Sam starts a distracting fire, grabs a rifle, and down goes one angry Native (Ahhh!
) at the 30:13 mark
in the proceedings.
Bart, being a Maverick, becomes susceptible to Sam's later romantic overtures. While Bart sleeps, Sam once again absconds with the plates. Meanwhile, back in civilization, Bart is the subject of a preliminary trial with Gunnerson convinced that Bart knows the whereabouts of Samantha Crawford and/or the plates. After all, there is still that $10,000 reward to consider.
Samantha "dripping honeysuckle" Crawford charms the Judge, who also "drips honeysuckle" played by Thurston Hall, a favourite of classic movie fans with 230 film credits including Inspector Crane in The Lone Wolf movies.
Justice prevails when Gunnerson and Maverick split the reward. There is a touching farewell at the railway station between Bart and Samantha.
Diane Brewster, Jack Kelly
Bart: "Goodbye, Samantha."
Samantha: "Goodbye, darling."
Bart immediately jumps on board the train when he realizes Samantha has picked his pocket with her goodbye kiss. Samantha waves goodbye from the platform. Those Maverick boys consider themselves as cynical as they come, but they have a strong sentimental streak when it comes to their lovely Warner Brothers contractees.
Samantha: "Goodbye, darling. Say "hello" to brother Bret for me. He'll remember me too."