Noon Wine (DVD) Coming to Our Shelves May 2023
Rough dairy farmer Royal Earle Thompson is trapped in a loveless marriage and unsuccessfully tries to make amends for a past mistake
Royal Earle Thompson owns a dairy farm in southern Texas during the late 1890s. His farm is fairly unproductive, due in part to Thompson's laziness and distaste for most of the required labor on a farm. Thompson lives with his wife, Ellie, and two small sons, and while Ellie is continually ill, she does her best to perform her domestic duties around the farm. One day, Olaf Helton presents himself at the farm and the taciturn Swede asks Farmer Thompson for a job and is hired on the spot. Helton proves to be an invaluable asset and after nine years pass, the dairy farm is thriving, thanks to Helton's incomparable work ethic One day, an offensive and irritating stranger named Homer T. Hatch shows up at the farm. saying he is there to "locate" Helton. Thompson takes an immediate dislike to Helton due to his grating banter and subtle insults. Hatch eventually reveals he is a bounty hunter, and Helton is an escaped mental patient. Thompson has a vision of Hatch driving a knife blade into Helton's stomach.and rushes to Helton's defense, striking Hatch with an axe blade and killing him. Nenwhile, Helton flees. After a perfunctory trial, Thompson is acquitted on the ground of self-defense/defense of another but Thompson continues to relive the killing, endlessly reviewing possible options, other paths he could have taken. Worse, though he is legally "not guilty," the community regards him as not innocent, and fears that he has become an outcast.. In a climactic scene at home, Thompson realizes that even his wife is afraid of him and that their now nearly grown sons no longer trust him. Dressed in his best, Thompson writes a note of explanation, how he never meant to kill Hatch. Poignantly, Thompson puts no blame on Helton, observing that had Hatch come hunting him instead of Helton, his friend would have done the same for him.
- The show was recorded live, on kinescope and the original masters were thought to be lost
- Aired as part of the anthology series 'ABC Stage 67'