Lost Yesterday (Episode 3.20)

Executive Producer Frank Price
Produced by Winston Miller
Written by True Boardman
Directed by Don McDougall

... I had a feeling I was home.

Episode scene:

Clara Malone has lost her memory in a stagecoach accident in which the Virginian was the only other passenger. He brings her to Shiloh to recuperate and when she is able he takes her out to see the countryside. She comments on its beauty and asks “You love it here, don’t you?” He replies that when he came here six years ago, he had a feeling he was home. Then, hoping to jog her memory, he begins to list the places he’s been, including: St. Louis, towns along the Mississippi when he “worked on a riverboat once”, New Orleans and San Francisco, “what a town should really be.”

Quotation from the book (Chapter 6):

“I could not live without it now,” he said. “This has got into my system.” He swept his hand out at the vast space of world. “ I went back home to see my folks onced...But them Virginia mountains could please me no more...I reckon I’ll not go back.”

Additional comments:

  1. According to this episode, the places the Virginian has been differs from that enumerated by Owen Wister in the book, namely, “Arkansas, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming.” (Chapter 4)
  2. In Stopover In A Western Town, when Caroline comments how big and empty the country feels, and asks him why he stays there, the Virginian replies “Maybe because it is big ... a man feels free, I guess.”
  3. Whenever James Drury, in his role as the Virginian, speaks of the beauty of Wyoming, it is easy to see that he loves the West as much as the character he portrays. According to his biography, Mr. Drury spent a good deal of time on his mother’s ranch in Oregon when he was growing up. He later moved to Texas, where he and his wife currently reside.

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(Compilation © 2002 by Alice Munzo. All rights reserved.)