The Big Valley (1965–1969)
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The Challenge 

A plot is hatched to use an innocent photo in an embarassing way. Victoria and a U.S. Senator are the targets of the smear campaign.


Virgil W. Vogel


Margaret Armen, A.I. Bezzerides (creator) | 1 more credit »


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Episode cast overview:
Richard Long ... Jarrod Barkley
Peter Breck ... Nick Barkley
Lee Majors ... Heath Barkley
Linda Evans ... Audra Barkley (credit only)
Barbara Stanwyck ... Victoria Barkley
James Gregory ... Senator Jim Bannard
Harold Gould ... Judge William Daggett
Regis Philbin ... Reporter
Lincoln Demyan Lincoln Demyan ... Drunk
Eddie Firestone ... Jack Gill


A plot is hatched to use an innocent photo in an embarassing way. Victoria and a U.S. Senator are the targets of the smear campaign.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis








Release Date:

18 March 1968 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound Recording)



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Victoria's horse is a black mare named Misty Girl. See more »


A scene where a man holds up a silver dollar shows it to be a "Peace Dollar", a design used from 1921 - 1935. A more appropriate design for this time period would likely be the "Morgan Dollar", which was used from 1878 - 1904, and 1921. See more »


Heath Barkley: Where you going?
Nick Barkley: Into town.
Heath Barkley: At this hour? Business or pleasure?
Nick Barkley: Business. But uh, somehow I think it could turn out to be a little pleasure.
Heath Barkley: Like breaking into Daggett's office? Try to find those pictures?
Nick Barkley: And the plate that made 'em.
Heath Barkley: You know what Jarrod said about direct action.
Nick Barkley: Well now, Heath, you know I'm no politician. That doesn't apply to me.
Heath Barkley: His office is in the middle of town. That's pretty risky, Nick.
Nick Barkley: Then stay home.
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User Reviews

A set-up picture cause problems for a Senator and Victoria.
14 August 2012 | by kfo9494See all my reviews

In the final episode of season three we are treated again to the under-estimated James Gregory. In this show, Mr Gregory plays Jim Bannard a state senator running for re-election in the late 1800's California. Senator Bannard is an old flame of Victoria and is supported by the entire Barkley family in the bid for re-election. His support is strong even with a local lawyer/Judge William Daggett also seeking the office occupied by Bannard.

When some racy pictures are taken of Senator Bannard and Victoria, it will lead to allegations of corruption from Candidate Daggett unless the Senator agrees to drop his bid for re-election. But the Senator is not one for backing down to problems and even challenges Daggett to a public duel of honor.

When Daggett refused, the Senator is left with having to take matters into his own hands to save his state seat and Victoria's reputation. But with the hot-headed Senator, it will be difficult to separate honor from possible murder.

Even though the acting was good and the story interesting, I found it difficult to agree with the ending. But perhaps that was what the writers wanted- to add more flavor to the episode. Agree or disagree with the ending- the story was interesting. Barbara Stanwyck has some rough scenes in this show but holds up well to the challenging activities. Good watch.

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