This episode of The Rifleman brought together past and future superheroes

In 1961, two superheroes met on the small screen

Near the end of season three, "Stopover" is already a pretty dramatic Rifleman episode. The story finds Lucas and Mark huddling in their barn in the middle of a snowstorm. When a coach gets stuck outside, the passengers ask Lucas if they can wait out the storm with them. Of course, he accepts. But when a gunman traveling under a different name is uncovered among the passengers, the group starts pointing fingers about a recent robbery. Things get more complicated when a love triangle develops.

The first guest star name that jumps out is Adam West. While this episode came out in 1961, five full years before West would appear as Batman, he's still instantly recognizable. The future superhero plays the reluctant gunman, trying to stay off the radar.

But there's another hidden superhero in this episode. 

While the whiskey salesman isn't a heroic character in this episode, his actor is a different story. Vince Medford was played by Gordon Jones. Or as you might know him — The Green Hornet.

The Green Hornet originated as a radio show in the 1930s. In 1940, the superhero finally got to see the big a movie serial. Movie serials used to play sequentially in chapters in cinemas, once a week, usually following one story. The 13-chapter serial from 1940 was simply called The Green Hornet and the title character himself was played by Gordon Jones.

Gordon Jones on The Rifleman

Twenty-one years later, he would appear on the McCain ranch to go head-to-head with Adam West.

So when you're watching this episode, you're not just watching stranded coach passengers waiting out a storm; you're watching past and future superheroes meet. 

Watch The Rifleman on MeTV!

Weekdays at 3 PM & 3:30 PM
Saturdays at 5 PM & 5:30 PM

*available in most MeTV markets
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KevinButler 34 months ago
Gordy Jones was best known for playing:"Mike The Cop" on "The Abbott & Costello TV Show".
Jimo 34 months ago
Adam West...THE STANDARD for classic Batman campiness....perfect!
Zip 34 months ago
Never watched The Green Hornet, so did not know that was him. interesting story!
RedSamRackham Zip 19 months ago
* But it was 1960's Green Hornet that 1st portrayed Kato as a martial arts expert as portrayed by Bruce Lee.
Mike 34 months ago
For the record:
Gordon Jones had a long and varied career as a character in movies and TV.
I remember him best as "Mike the Cop" , the perpetually frustrated foil of Abbott and Costello on their early-'50s TV show (he was in nearly all of the series episodes, covering two seasons).
Gordon Jones also did many features, getting the most notice in "My Sister Eileen" as the "Ramblin' Wreck From Georgia Tech!" (and a heck of an engineer).
Gordon Jones passed on in 1963, only 52 years old; otherwise, he might have racked up even more TV and movie appearances (see if you can spot a number of appearances he made as a sideline cop in Perry Mason episodes over the years).
HulkFan02 34 months ago
I remember both Green Hornet and Batman at first on 2015
Andybandit 34 months ago
I like that episode of the Rifleman. Adam West was a good looking guy.
HulkFan02 Andybandit 34 months ago
Agreed, it's sad he passed away
HulkFan02 34 months ago
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Pdls Andybandit 34 months ago
Very handsome. He was great as a psycho on "The Big Valley".
harlow1313 34 months ago
I was ten at the time, and me and my mates greatly anticipated the premiere of "Batman." The series was a great disappointment to us all. We were yet to develop an appreciation for "camp," but frankly, this show never did much for me, even after getting the jokes in later life.
Pacificsun harlow1313 34 months ago
Wasn't the concept behind to give the look and feel of a comic book experience? Larger than life! Stylized action. I mean, I get that this is your opinion. Accepted! But I thought it was a nice departure from the typical superhero that maybe was a little egotistical. Batman was just about fun, and best part was, he joined right into the fun.

We'll agree to disagree, okay!!
HulkFan02 harlow1313 34 months ago
Yea, it was sad
justjeff 34 months ago
Robert Lowery, 1945's Batman did an episode of The Adventures of Superman as a mortal who was somehow affected by Kryptonite... Lowery also played Big Jim Champion, the circus owner in Circus Boy with Mickey Braddock (Mickey Dolenz)...

In the 1978 Superman movie, Kirk Alyn and Noel Neill (Clark Kent/Superman and Lois Lane from the 1940s serials - and she of the 1950s TV show) play the parents of a little Lois Lane as they ride a train that the teenage future Superman (Jeff East) jumps over...

Lyle Talbot (the villain in the second Superman serial) shows up all over 1950s and 1960s TV - most recognizably as Ozzie's next-door neighbor on The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.
HulkFan02 justjeff 34 months ago
I used and remember seen Adventures of Superman during Super Sci fi Saturday night before seeing The Incredible Hulk (which is I love the series) at 6:00 pm every saturday.
HulkFan02 34 months ago
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cperrynaples 34 months ago
Wouldn't know Gordon Jones. For my generation, Van Williams was The Green Hornet...LOL!
Yes, he also appeared on a couple of episodes of Batman, and there was another episode where Dick Grayson was in front of the TV and said "it's time for the Green Hornet" then the theme music started but was interrupted by the "villain of the week" - I think it was the Joker but it's been about 25 years since I saw that episode so I could be wrong.
You have a great memory. The episode was "The Impractical Joker".
I didn't know that
cperrynaples BrittReid 34 months ago
Was that the one where the Joker was trapped on the Batpole by Alfred? Funniest episode ever!
djw1120 cperrynaples 34 months ago
What I would like to know is, why whenver the "villain-of-the-week" captured Batman and/or Robin, they NEVER took of their masks and cowls to see who they really were?
I remember Joker once came close to doing so - when he was dressed as an operatic clown and at the last second Batman got a "Bat-gas-pellet" out of his utility belt and threw it on the ground creating a smoke screen so he and Robin could escape the Joker's clutches.
Then the Joker vowed "to all that's unholy" that he would never again be tricked by Batman's utility belt and devised his own, then switched it with Batman's during one of the fight sceens.
Mirramanee djw1120 34 months ago
They never took off Batman's and/or Robin's masks because, with their secret identities revealed, then the whole series would have ended right there. LOL

Seriously, such oddities exist all over old movies and TV shows. How often have you watched a program or movie where someone who is puttering around their home (always on a late night, sometimes with a nice thunderous rainstorm outside) and they hear suspicious sounds upstairs like a possible intruder. Then, they grab whatever might be a likely weapon (sometimes they don't even do that!) and slowly start climbing the stairs to investigate. Doesn't occur to them to call the police or maybe go next door to the neighbor's or if they live in a deserted area, just jump in the car and leave like more sensible people might do in real life. But, if the characters did the sensible thing, where would be the fun/suspense/horror, etc.?
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