Wild Wild West

Night of the Murderous Spring, #6527

A woman named Kitten Twitty registers at the same hotel as Agent James West, who helps her carry her trunk, unaware that Dr. Miguelito Loveless is hiding inside. Loveless sneaks into West's room and pours a powerful new drug into the agent's shaving water. After shaving, West develops a powerful headache and begins hallucinating. When Loveless appears at the window and starts shooting, West fires back and the doctor's body falls into the street. But when West goes down to investigate, he finds no body and no witnesses.

Agent Artemus Gordon arrives on the afternoon coach and sees West is not himself. The two agents are given a note to meet Dr. Loveless that night. West keeps seeing Loveless, while Arte insists there is no one there. West starts an argument with his partner and shoots him in cold blood, but upon turning himself into the hotel manager, he learns that Gordon's stage will not arrive until the next day. Can Gordon rescue his friend from insanity before the diabolical doctor realizes his plan to put his pernicious powder into the nation's water supply?

The Night of the Murderous Spring is the fourth installment in the ongoing saga of Dr. Miguelito Loveless v. James T. West. This episode shows Loveless at his nastiest. Writer John Kneubuhl remembered Murderous Spring as one of his favorites: "It captured beautifully the crazy, childish, existential, nutty kind of murderousness of the character Miguelito Loveless. I'm rather naive about drugs and maybe I knew about LSD at the time, but I wouldn't be surprised if I didn't. The powder was just one of those mysterious Loveless inventions."

The opening scene showes Loveless in a wheelchair because of a leg injury that actually happened while shooting. Director Richard Donner explains: "We were shooting the scene with Michael Dunn in the chicken coop first, which was the last scene in the show. Michael ran out the door, and, being very fragile, fell and hurt himself. So when we shot the first part of the show, we rewrote it to have him in a wheelchair." Sooner or later, just about everyone in Wild Wild West was injured in a stunt, and Dunn insisted on doing his own stunts like everyone else.

One final bit of trivia: The lake assigned to the evil duty of releasing the ducks that would carry Loveless' drug across the land is actually the manmade lake used as the lagoon in Gilligan's Island, since demolished and turned into a studio parking lot.

Dr. Miguelito Loveless: Michael Dunn 
Kitten Twitty: Jenie Jackson 
Antoinette: Phoebe Dorin
Hotel Clerk: Bill McLean 
Attendant: Leonard Falk 
Child: Todd Garrett
Man: William Fawcett
Directed by Richard Donner 
Written by John Kneubuhl 
* The above information was compiled from The Wild Wild West: The Series by Susan E. Kesler (Arnett Press), "Michael Garrison's Wild Wild West," an article by Robert Alan Crick in Epi-Log Journal #11 and other sources.
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