Sunday, January 25, 2015

To the Sunset

This week's Pinkertons episode was "To the Sunset" (although my local station reversed this episode with "The Case of the Dead Dog" that they aired last week). The governor of Missouri hired the Pinkertons to investigate the double murder of a Chippewa man and a white man, and they discovered a young boy who witnessed the murders but does not speak English. The story touched on a lot of racial tension as well as lingering bitterness about broken treaties and missionaries who keep trying to "civilize" the Indians. One guy tried to prove that Indians could integrate into the white world and live in peace. (But historically, "integration" meant that Indians had to lose their culture and their families. No thanks!) In the episode, a couple of Indian characters even discussed how the whites "stole the world" and can't be trusted to ensure justice.

Will Pinkerton really began to shine as he tried to tread carefully and diplomatically. When he traveled to find a missionary who could translate Chippewa, he met an attractive preacher's daughter named Rebecca. He clearly wanted to ingratiate himself with her, and yet he still pointed out to her that Indians resented Christian missionaries and wanted to be left alone. Later in the episode, Will even made a deal that Rebecca's group would stop trying to convert a particular Sioux tribe, and Rebecca honored the deal instead of arguing that Will had no right to speak for the missionaries. I liked it. Kate still did a lot of good investigating, discovering a crooked land deal which helped solve the murder. I'm not sure if she was lying when she said her late husband was named Archibald and liked French whiskey. In any case she proved herself to be a "sly woman", while John Bell at the farm helped take care of the Chippewa boy. Good episode.

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