For a brief time Clayton Moore was replaced by John Hart as The Lone Ranger. He made this Z movie during that break. He would have been better off hiding out. If you want to brush up on the Hollywood hackneyed phrases used by movie Indians have a pencil and paper ready. You’ll hear “Great White Father”, “Many Moons”, “Singing Wire” and many other favorites.
After a few minutes on how the west was won the movie finally settles on Buffalo Bill and his pal Cactus (Slim Andrews). They’re driving a herd of cattle that was promised to Chief White Cloud as part of a treaty. They spot a wagon train being attacked by Indians and ride over to pump some lead into some Sioux. The Indians have had enough, pick up their dead and wounded and leave the area.
Bill (Clayton Moore) and Cactus can’t help but notice the women firing rifles are actually soldiers in disguise. Several wagon trains have been attacked lately so they thought they’d play dress up and deliver some payback. Bill says the retreat wasn’t like the Sioux and gets suspicious that all’s not well. He can’t buy that White Cloud would go back on his word. After all he put his mark on the “promise paper.”
At Fort Randall the townspeople don’t want the cattle delivered. A man named Blake has ’em all stirred up. His right hand man Stokey gets into a brawl with Bill. Not a good move. Bill and Cactus ride out to see White Cloud. They even send a smoke signal to let him know they’re on their way. An answer says to come on over. That doesn’t explain why some Indians are firing arrows at them.
Here comes White Cloud (Chief Yowlachie). He orders his braves to get the faceless ones who were shooting at Bill and Cactus. They’re called that because they lost face with the tribe. Back at the teepees it turns out the leader of the trio is White Cloud’s rebellious son Running Deer (Rod Redwing). They don’t know he’s been working with Blake. Blake and his men have been dressing as Indians and attacking the wagon trains. They want to drive the citizens out and take over the land. Why? The yellow stone aka/gold.
Running Deer is loaded with attitude. White Cloud gives him the death sentence. Bill objects. Running Deer sneers. Then Bill tosses a knife in the ground. Time for a knife fight. Running Deer loses. Good guy Bill won’t kill him so Running Deer commits suicide.
Bill is now convinced that there are some fake Indians running around. Before he can get to the cattle, Stokey drives them off. Bill and Cactus look for them but they went to parts unknown. Bill sends a telegram or singing wire, to get more. Meantime he’ll try and get a buffalo herd he spotted to White Cloud. Once again Stokey gets there first. White Cloud’s had it. He splits the ground with a lance and tears up the promise paper. No cattle in three days or the citizens and soldiers are dead meat.
This is so bad it has to be seen at least once for the laughs.
Clayton Moore only stayed away from the TV series for one season is a salary dispute. Movies like this probably helped him put the mask back on.