Thursday, August 5, 2010


Erma Curran was a 19 year old newlywed, married only a week to the gunslinger Kid Curran when they met up with Beau Maverick in the episode "Red Dog". The infatuation with her husband had already faded from her eyes as she made a play for the Brit-tinged gambler down by the water hole the next morning.
The Kid wasn't going to stand for it though and that next night he dragged her into the back room of an old shack and beat her mercilessly. More than likely he probably raped her as well. The other men - Buckskin Charlie King, Wolf McManus, and Judge Reese - did nothing to stop the abuse; as the Judge saw it, she was his woman. (Beau couldn't help her; he was tied up. But it makes me wonder - what would he have done, had he been free? Mavericks aren't likely to get into fights if they can help it.)
Bearing the bruises from the Kid's treatment, Erma got her revenge by helping Beau escape and riding off with him into the mountains. There she grabbed his gun and shot her husband dead when he tried to ambush them. At the end of the misadventure, Charlie King offered the newly-minted widow the opportunity to ride along with him, saying that he always had a soft spot for such a woman.

It was probably his undoing.

I'm not looking at the prospects of their future together with the naivete of the original 50's viewing audience. I'm sure that each night on the trail, Charlie and Erma shared the same bedroll - the way Erma looked, I'm sure Charlie wouldn't have waited for permission to enjoy her pleasures. And I'm thinking it wouldn't have been long before Erma found herself pregnant. (For alls I know, she was pregnant from that night in the shack when she was raped by her late, unlamented husband.)

Erma was a conniving vixen and I'm sure she realized that Buckskin Charlie King was worth more to her, not as a protector and lover, but as a bounty. (According to the Western Gazette, which carried a full page picture of Buckskin, he had a $10,000.00 price on his head.) At the first chance she got, Erma probably turned him in for the reward, before her pregnancy became too much of a hindrance to her scheme.

When she finally had the child, most likely a boy, Erma decided to give him Buckskin's last name, perhaps even his full name of Charles King. And with that $10,000.00, she may have started a ranch of her own, perhaps in Arizona. If so, she may have named it "The Flying Crown Ranch." Eventually, the Flying Crown would be inherited by her son and then by his own son, Schuyler - also known as "Sky" King.

And for those of a certain age, 'Sky King' was a high-flying rancher in the 1950's who had plenty of adventures in the "clear blue of the western sky" in his plane "Songbird" with his niece Penny.

And so that theory of "relateeveety" provides a possible link between 'Maverick' and 'Sky King'!

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