“The Little Bit of Paradise” has a shaky opening, but it manages to pick up tension and excitement as it goes along.
This recap of Billy the Kid season 1, episode 5, “The Little Bit of Paradise”, contains spoilers.
You’ll recall that at the end of last week’s Billy the Kid, Billy found himself in a bit of a predicament. After having escaped from captivity again, he was saved from dehydration and the elements by the Seven River Gang at the behest of his old pal Jesse Evans. Except, Billy didn’t know that, since he woke up under the care of a woman named Barbara, whose therapy turned physical almost immediately. Barbara, it turned out at the end of “Interlude”, was Jesse’s girl. Oops.
Billy the Kid season 1, episode 5 recap
“The Little Bit of Paradise” picks up from here and then plays the whole dynamic out on fast-forward. Jesse is happy to see Billy alive and well, then immediately figures out what has been going on. There are some passive-aggressive macho scenes between the two, including a classic Wild West duel that is loaded with implications if not bullets. Jesse wants Billy to ride with his crew, which one of his associates points out is ill-advised given Billy is wanted in two counties, but yet he keeps staring at him through windows and making loaded comments to Barbara about the two of them. And it’s no wonder, really. Billy and Barbara share a kiss yards away from him; Billy tells her he loves her. Even despite knowing this Jesse lends Billy a horse, and when Billy departs after sharing a touching goodbye with Barbara as if they were a real couple and nobody’s watching, Jesse points a loaded rifle at Billy’s retreating back. He can’t fire, though, since as Barbara points out, he loves Billy.
But does he? Frankly, this whole sequence is silly; we haven’t seen Billy spend enough time with Jesse, and especially not Barbara, for any of this emotionality to ring true. In truth, I was happy when Billy cantered away, sparing us all from any more of these melodramatics.
Billy moves on to Chihuahua, where he’s prompted to reminisce about his family. We get the idea the show is going for here; that Billy is a fundamentally nice guy whom the Wild West is determined to make a killer of. A limping young boy abuses his kindness and steals his boots. He’s mugged and beaten by three men until he’s saved, in some ways, by Melquiades Segura, a degenerate gambler in a fair amount of debt to a man named Don Ortiz.
Segura, whose eyes flash with dollar signs when he sees how handy Billy is with a six-shooter, wants Billy to help him expose Don Ortiz’s cheating in a game of poker and recoup his losses. The vibes are off in the illicit poker den, but Billy performs as advertised, and he and Segura make off with a hefty amount of loot. And, of course, they blow it in celebration.
Well, kind of. During the night, they meet two women who invite them for dinner with their supposedly well-to-do mother. They flatter Billy and Segura, get them drunk, and eventually steal all their belongings while they’re passed out. The next morning, the “mother” explains that the girls were her nieces, and they’ve already left for Sacramento.
With no other way to regain their funds, Segura tries to talk Billy into robbing a bank. But, again, we’re to understand he’s dead against crimes that hurt people. Cattle rustling is one thing, but stealing the savings of innocent women and children like his mother and brother? Not the same. With his moral code still intact, Billy instead accompanies Segura back to Don Ortiz’s, where they make another haul, though this time with Billy catching Don Ortiz in the act of cheating.
That, apparently, can’t go unanswered. After having parted ways with Segura, who’s heading to New Mexico, Billy is attacked by Don Ortiz’s goons and Don Ortiz himself, all of whom he kills – the latter he even executes, despite his offer of a business partnership and the promise that Segura will be spared.
Looks like Billy is heading to New Mexico.