Cast & Crew
When outlaw Dan Cass robs a train in Texas and then flees across the border to New Mexico, Texas Ranger Kip Allen requests a leave of absence so that he can pursue Cass and retrieve the $100,000 in gold coins that he has stolen. Some time later in Long Bend, New Mexico, Cass finds himself bedeviled by a masked rider known as The Durango Kid, who appears whenever he attempts to spend the gold. Lucky Thorpe, the crooked owner of the town saloon, suggests that Cass rob the bank for spending money. That night, as Cass enters the bank, he is confronted by The Durango Kid. From the street, Lucky, who wants to secure the gold for himself, shoots Cass in the back and then accuses The Durango Kid of murder. When Cass, with his dying breath, affirms that The Durango Kid was his assailant, Cannonball, the sheriff's brother, enlists Lucky and his henchman Nevada to pursue The Durango Kid. Following the rider's tracks to a mining compound owned by Tex Harding, the three enter the office and find Tex talking to his old friend, Kip Allen. After Lucky and the others leave, Kip explains that he was posing as The Durango Kid in order to apprehend Cass and return him to Texas. When Kip asks Tex's help in locating the missing gold, Tex directs him to an abandoned mine, which he believes may have served as Cass's hiding place. Meanwhile, Lucky, suspicious of Kip, orders his gang to follow him. As the gang decoys Tex and Kip with gunfire, Nevada sneaks into the mine and removes the gold. In the hail of gunfire, Kip shoots and kills one of the gang. When Tex identifies the man as Lefty Deanes, a dealer at the saloon, Kip and Tex ride to town to question Lucky. After Lucky denies any involvement with Lefty, Tex and Kip leave the saloon. Nevada then sneaks into Lucky's office to inform him that he has hidden the gold in the closet. Later that day, Grubstake, an old, eccentric prospector whose real name is Horace Higginbottom, receives a letter from his granddaughter Gail Radford, notifying him that her father has died and she is coming to live with him. Distraught because he has portrayed himself to the girl as a prosperous prospector, Grubstake turns to Lucky for help. Realizing that he can use Grubstake as a "front" to disseminate the gold, Lucky decides to make it appear that Grubstake has uncovered a rich vein of gold and then melt down the stolen coins and pass them through Grubstake's mine. When Kip hears that Grubstake has suddenly found a bonanza, he becomes suspicious, especially when the old man refuses to divulge the location of his mine. At a party held in Gail's honor, Lucky enters Grubstake's study and finds The Durango Kid rifling through the desk. The Durango Kid then flees, with Cannonball and the others in pursuit. Afterward, Tex examines one of Grubstake's nuggets and realizes that it is made from smelted coins. The next day, Gail, alarmed that Grubstake has ridden to his mine alone, asks Kip to follow and make sure that he is safe. At the mine, Grubstake is assaulted by a masked rider disguised like The Durango Kid, who steals a bag of gold and flees. Spying the masked figure galloping away, Kip follows him and reveals him to be Tex. Back at the mine, Tex, who has fallen in love with Gail, admits that he stole the gold to protect Grubstake from scandal and was intending to ship it back to the treasury. Finally recognizing Lucky's duplicity, Grubstake offers to trick Lucky into revealing the location of the remainder of the gold. When Grubstake asks Lucky to lead him to the gold, Lucky, who has overheard the scheme, sets an ambush. Disguised as The Durango Kid, Kip follows Grubstake and Lucky, while in town, Tex searches Lucky's office. When Grubstake detects the ambush, he tries to warn Kip and Lucky kills him. In the ensuing shootout, only Kip and Lucky survive and Lucky gallops back to town. Shot in the back by Lucky, Nevada, with his dying breath, gasps that the nuggets are hidden in Lucky's safe, sending Kip back to town. As Tex searches the office, Lucky bursts into the room and shoots him in the hand. After arranging with his musician friends to sing a warning song to Kip, Tex allows Kip to out draw Lucky and arrest the gang. Proud of her grandfather's part in apprehending Lucky and the others, Gail leaves with Tex to be married, while Kip rides back to Texas with the stolen gold.
Edward M. Howard
James T. "bud" Nelson
The working title of this film was Texas Rifles. The film opens with the following written prologue: "The early railroads of the West were raided and plundered by a band of daring lawless men. The Texas Rangers fought valiantly to bring these outlaws to justice. In 1880 their fight for law and order was aided by a mysterious masked rider known as the Durango Kid." Although the character played by Charles Starrett was listed as "Kip Hardy" in CBCS, he is called "Kip Allen" in the film. A comparison viewing of this film and the 1947 Columbia picture Last Days of Boot Hill reveals that some scenes from Both Barrels Blazing were used in the 1947 film. Modern sources add Dan White and Mauritz Hugo to the cast. For additional information on "The Durango Kid" series, please consult the Series Index and see the entry below for The Return of the Durango Kid.