Cast & Crew
After Wells Fargo Overland Stage driver California Carlson is robbed of thousands of dollars and gold, he is forced to unhitch the horses and ride away. California returns to track the bandits with his friend, deputy sheriff Johnny Travers, and a posse, but they only find the outlaws' horses, which have been stolen from a local ranch. California and Johnny follow the tracks to the river, but are unable to cross because the river marks the state line between Texas and Oklahoma. Using California's description of one of the robbers, Twin Rocks sheriff Hopalong Cassidy posts a "wanted" poster listing the bandit as having a scar on his left cheek. After rancher Todd Colby reports several rustlings, Hoppy connects the rustlings to the stagecoach bandits and crosses into Oklahoma alone to investigate. Posing as a cattle buyer named Jones, Hoppy encounters rancher Ben Hollister, his daughter Jean, and her boyfriend, Steve Jordan, who are suspicious of strangers and advise Hoppy to leave their ranch. Hoppy then checks in a hotel in town, and immediately has a run-in with Steve Jordan's brother Tom, who has a scar on his left cheek. Unknown to Hoppy, California and Johnny are following him across the state line, and are present the next day when Tom picks a fight with Hoppy for beating him in a poker game. Later, California and Johnny protect Hoppy from ambush by Tom's gang, but after Hoppy thrashes Tom, he pretends not to know his friends to maintain his cover. Hoppy surreptitiously discovers that the general store has recently taken in some of the stolen Wells Fargo bills, and when he learns that Tom gave Ben the bills in exchange for cattle, Hoppy suspects that Tom will try to get rid of Ben. Hoppy, California and Johnny arrive at the ranch in time to alert Ben and Jean, and aid in their defense when Tom and his gang try to kill them. The outlaws leave after they realize they are outmatched, and Ben offers to hire California and Johnny to work on his ranch. After Hoppy insists that the men accept his offer so that they can protect the Hollisters, Jean tells Steve that her father will no longer allow her to see him. California is later taken hostage by the Jordan gang and is severely beaten when he refuses to reveal with whom he is working. When Hoppy and Johnny find his abandoned hat and gun, they rush to rescue him from the outlaws. California informs Hoppy that he has learned that the outlaws have been stealing Colby's cattle and changing the brand to look like their own. Hoppy, California and Johnny then find Steve rebranding stolen cattle and take him hostage. When they find some of the stolen money in his cabin, Steve escapes, but Hoppy plots to capture the outlaws by stealing their cattle and herding them across river, thereby luring the outlaws to cross the state line. Jean sees Hoppy rustling the herd and, confused, reports to Steve. A posse of Hoppy's men, who have been alerted by telegram, arrive to help bring in the bandits. The Jordans follow their cattle across the river, and a gunfight quickly dwindles their numbers. Hoppy lassos the Jordan brothers as they try to cross back to Oklahoma, and California serves them with a soggy arrest warrant. Later the grateful Hollisters thank Hoppy and his friends for their help.
Topper, A Horse
The working title of this film was Texas Law. The film marked the feature film debut of actor Robert Mitchum, who was billed as "Bob Mitchum" A modern source includes Ben Corbett and Art Mix in the cast. For additional information on the series, please consult the Series Index and see the entry for Hop-Along Cassidy in AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40; F3.1990.