The BEST Episodes of Gunsmoke

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Nov 25, 2021

Network: CBS

Marshal Matt Dillon keeps the peace in the rough and tumble Dodge City.

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#1 - Hammerhead

Season 10 - Episode 14 - Aired Dec 26, 1964

Festus takes part in a horse race in which big money is at stake, tempting some to sabotage the race in order to make sure of the outcome.

star 9.00
48 votes
Directors: Christian Nyby
Writers: Antony Ellis

#2 - Minnie

Season 6 - Episode 30 - Aired Apr 15, 1961

Rough and rowdy Minnie comes to Dodge City and sets her designs on Doc Adams much to the delight of Matt, Chester and Kitty. Trouble comes though when Minnie's husband comes to Dodge and finds out that his Minnie is sweet on Doc.

star 8.87
48 votes
Directors: Harry Harris
Writers: John Meston
Seven Hours to Dawn

#3 - Seven Hours to Dawn

Season 11 - Episode 1 - Aired Sep 18, 1965

Matt has to get Dodge City back from outlaws.

star 8.44
32 votes
Writers: Clyde Ware
The Way It Is

#4 - The Way It Is

Season 8 - Episode 12 - Aired Dec 1, 1962

While Matt is out of town, putting lawman's business ahead of Kitty yet again, a new man in her life has plenty of time and attention to give--perhaps too much attention.

star 8.42
19 votes
Directors: Harry Harris
Writers: Frank Paris, Kathleen Hite
The Bounty Hunter

#5 - The Bounty Hunter

Season 11 - Episode 7 - Aired Oct 30, 1965

Lured out of retirement with the promise of land, a bounty hunter is aimed by his boss at the man who killed his son. He just doesn't tell him the reward and charges had been dropped.

star 8.35
17 votes
Directors: Harry Harris
Writers: Paul Savage
The Pillagers

#6 - The Pillagers

Season 13 - Episode 9 - Aired Nov 6, 1967

Kitty and fellow traveling passenger Newly O'Brien are captured by Mexican outlaw Manez and his gang.

star 8.25
12 votes
Writers: Calvin Clements
Hard Luck Henry

#7 - Hard Luck Henry

Season 13 - Episode 7 - Aired Oct 23, 1967

A comedic episode. Festus tries to get a box full of gold coins away from his relatives and back to Dodge, the Dooleys who are feuding with the Haggens are also trying to get their hands on the box.

star 8.21
14 votes
Directors: John Rich
Writers: Warren Douglas
With a Smile

#8 - With a Smile

Season 8 - Episode 29 - Aired Mar 30, 1963

A rancher's spoiled son believes even after he is convicted of murder that his father's wealth and influence will save him from the hangman.

star 8.19
16 votes
Writers: Bud Furillo, George Main, John Meston
Gold Mine

#9 - Gold Mine

Season 11 - Episode 15 - Aired Dec 25, 1965

When Matt is too busy to escort Kitty to a gold mine she inherited, she travels there alone and meets with claim jumpers and other difficulties.

star 8.19
43 votes
Directors: Abner Biberman
Writers: Beth Keele, Scott Hunt
Carter Caper

#10 - Carter Caper

Season 9 - Episode 8 - Aired Nov 16, 1963

A man with a grudge hits upon the perfect revenge when he spreads the word in Dodge that short-tempered Billy is so good with a gun that he shot down the famous gunfighter, Beau Carter.

star 8.17
18 votes
Directors: Jerry Hopper
Writers: John Meston
The Twisted Heritage

#11 - The Twisted Heritage

Season 14 - Episode 15 - Aired Jan 6, 1968

Kitty saves the life of a man during a stage hold-up, taking him back to his ranch she finds his mother a ruthless matron and his daughter alienated from her father.

star 8.16
45 votes

#12 - Quint-Cident

Season 8 - Episode 33 - Aired Apr 27, 1963

A woman newly widowed is powerfully attracted to Quint, but when he gently turns her down, she vows to make him pay for scorning a white woman.

star 8.13
15 votes
Writers: Kathleen Hite
Prairie Wolfer

#13 - Prairie Wolfer

Season 9 - Episode 16 - Aired Jan 18, 1964

Festus returns to Dodge from wolfing and is hired by the Cattleman's Association to hunt down the wolves killing everyone's cattle. What he finds is that what's been doing the preying may wind him up in prison if he doesn't get Matt's help.

star 8.13
16 votes
Writers: John Dunkel
The Foundling

#14 - The Foundling

Season 19 - Episode 18 - Aired Feb 11, 1974

When the parents of a daughter who was raped refuse to accept the girl's baby, Marshal Dillon must find a home for the child.

star 8.12
41 votes
Writers: Jim Byrnes

#15 - Chicken

Season 10 - Episode 11 - Aired Dec 5, 1964

Mistakenly hailed as a hero who downed four robbers, a man rethinks his decision to let folks regard him as a gunfighter when protecting the woman he wants calls for a gunman's skill.

star 8.12
50 votes
Writers: John Meston
Honey Pot

#16 - Honey Pot

Season 10 - Episode 34 - Aired May 15, 1965

A man comes to town and tells Sam he's going to shoot Matt. It's soon understood he is an old friend. Involved in shooting and killing a man, their friendship is stretched as he claims self defense even though he was the only one armed.

star 8.12
43 votes
Directors: Harry Harris
Writers: John Meston
The New Society

#17 - The New Society

Season 10 - Episode 35 - Aired May 22, 1965

Matt is ordered to Ridge Town to reopen the case of an army major who was murdered 12 years before, when a dying outlaw he shot swears he did not commit the crime, and it appears the whole town is hiding something.

star 8.08
13 votes
Directors: Joseph Sargent
Writers: Calvin Clements Sr.
Daddy Went Away

#18 - Daddy Went Away

Season 8 - Episode 35 - Aired May 11, 1963

Chester is sweet on a widow dressmaker. When the widow is not only intent on marriage but eager to make changes in Chester as well, he has second thoughts--especially after a talk with her child suggests that the widow may still be a wife.

star 8.07
14 votes
Directors: Joseph Sargent
Writers: John Rosser, Kathleen Hite
The Quest for Asa Janin

#19 - The Quest for Asa Janin

Season 8 - Episode 38 - Aired Jun 1, 1963

A young man is convicted of killing the saloon girl he wanted for his own. Matt is so sure that the young man is really innocent that he goes on the road after another suspect to prevent an unjust hanging.

star 8.07
14 votes
Writers: Paul Savage

#20 - Drago

Season 17 - Episode 11 - Aired Nov 22, 1971

Drago wants to find the person who killed a woman who helped him.

star 8.07
15 votes
Directors: Paul Stanley
Writers: Jim Byrnes
Stranger in Town

#21 - Stranger in Town

Season 13 - Episode 11 - Aired Nov 20, 1967

Professional gunman Dave Reeves comes to Dodge for an assignment, kill his ex-wife's new husband-to-be.

star 8.06
16 votes
Abe Blocker

#22 - Abe Blocker

Season 8 - Episode 11 - Aired Nov 24, 1962

Civilization is moving in on the isolation of a rugged pioneer friend of Matt's, and he starts using lethal force against the settlers encroaching on the land he regards as his.

star 8.06
17 votes
Writers: John Meston
Exodus 21.22

#23 - Exodus 21.22

Season 14 - Episode 26 - Aired Mar 24, 1969

A friend of Matt's, a former lawman arrives in Dodge to kill the men responsible for his wife's death.

star 8.05
43 votes
Writers: Arthur Rowe
The Iron Men

#24 - The Iron Men

Season 20 - Episode 7 - Aired Oct 21, 1974

Matt and former lawman now turned alcoholic, Chauncey Demon go up against land baron Carl Ryker.

star 8.04
45 votes
Writers: John Mantley

#25 - Chesterland

Season 7 - Episode 8 - Aired Nov 18, 1961

Chester becomes engaged more or less accidentally, but he takes to heart his obligation to his betrothed, leaving his job with Mr. Dillon to devote himself to homesteading a barren quarter section.

star 8.00
55 votes
Directors: Ted Post
Writers: Kathleen Hite
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