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Film / The Over-the-Hill Gang Rides Again

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The Over-the-Hill Gang Rides Again starring Walter Brennan and Fred Astaire is a 1970 ABC Movie of the Week sequel to the Western comedy The Over-the-Hill Gang. The supporting cast includes Edgar Buchanan, Andy Devine, Chill Wills, Lana Wood, and Burt Mustin (all of whom, except Wood, were in The Over-the-Hill Gang). Like the 1969 original, the sequel involves a group of aging Texas Rangers and was written by Richard Carr and directed by George McCowan.

Four retired Texas Rangers — Nash Crawford (Brennan), Jason Fitch (Buchanan), Amos Polk (Devine), and Gentleman George Agnew (Wills) — leap to the aid of their old chum the Baltimore Kid (Astaire). The Kid has become a hopeless drunk, and they aim to clean him up and install him as marshal of Waco, Texas. But in order to complete the job, the geriatric quartet will have to help the Kid defeat the outlaw gang that wants him dead.

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Tropes:

  • The Alcoholic: When the Rangers arrive in Waco, they discover that their old comrade the Baltimore Kid is now the town drunk.
  • Blind Mistake: Jason Fitch's appalling eyesight is a Running Gag in the film, and leads to situations like him mistaking a redheaded saloon girl for a cow and attempting to shoo her out of the saloon.
  • Bury Me Not on the Lone Prairie: The Baltimore Kid's last request is to be buried as a Texas Ranger with some of his old company in attendance. He asks Amos to send a letter to Sgt. Nash Crawford as he will be able to arrange this. The letter brings Nash, 'Gentleman' George, and Jason to town, only to discover that the Kid has already been buried. And then they discover that the Kid isn't actually dead...
  • Faking the Dead: During the final gunfight the Kid is shot dead. The citizens of Waco bury the Kid again, this time with honors. The old Rangers leave, but, at the end of the town, the Baltimore Kid is waiting, very much alive, now able to lead a life of peace and quiet.
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  • Firing in the Air a Lot: The first crime the Baltimore Kid stops as town marshal is a group of rowdy cowhands who are riding through the town firing into the air.
  • Hat Damage: Nash Crawford has his hat shot off his head by his ally Jason Fitch in a Blind Mistake due to Fitch's appalling eyesight.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: Katie appears to be this at first, having befriended the Baltimore Kid when he was down-and-out drunk, and then entering into a romance after he is cleaned up and becomes town marshal. However, it is all an act and she actually befriended the Kid to pump him for information so her boyfriend could pose as the Kid when he robbed the Wells-Fargo office.
  • Off the Wagon: The Baltimore Kid falls off the wagon when he learns that Katie has just been using him in an attempt to get away with the loot from the Wells-Fargo robbery.
  • The Real Remington Steele: A bandit adopted the Baltimore Kid's identity and held up the Wells-Fargo office in Waco. What he did not know was that the real Baltimore Kid was now the town drunk.
  • Scared of What's Behind You: the Baltimore Kid attempts to cow some cowhands who have been Firing in the Air a Lot with his reputation. The cowboys aren't impressed and are about to throw down, but Nash tells them that he always finds it advisable to look heavenwards before starting trouble. The leader does so, and immediately backs down, as he sees Agnew and Fitch on the roof with a rifle and a shotgun aimed at them. The Kid thinks it is his reputation that caused the change of mind.
  • The Trope Kid: The Baltimore Kid, who, ironically, is in his 70s.
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