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The Apple Dumpling Gang stars Bill Bixby as Russell Donovan, a slick frontier gambler. In Runyon-esque fashion, he is compelled to look after three precocious oprhaned kids. He can't handle the responsibilities alone, so he agrees to an in-name-only marriage to hoydenish stagecoach driver, Magnolia Dusty Clydesdale (Susan Clark). Fortuitously, they discover that a mine belonging to the kids' late father is worth millions. This brings several disreputable characters into the storyline: bumbling "nice" bandits Theodore Ogelvie and Amos (Don Knotts and Tim Conway), and deadly "bad" bandits headed by Frank Stillwell (Slim Pickens).

Tim Conway and Don Knotts, mere supporting characters in the original Apple Dumpling Gang, are promoted to starring roles in the 1979 sequel The Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again. Once more cast as clumsy, soft-hearted western outlaws, Conway and Knotts come to the rescue of cavalry private Tim Matheson. The villain, lieutenant Philip Pine, is undermining the authority of Matheson's commander Harry Morgan, and Matheson wants to find out why. Featured performers include Jack Elam as Big Mac and Ruth Buzzi as Tough Kate.

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WD56745 Apple Dumpling Gang/Apple Dumpling Gang Rides Again DVD (1975/79/Don Knotts) $15.99