Cast & Crew
Al "fuzzy" St. John
When Tom Farrell introduces a stagecoach line to Mesa City, Fuzzy Q. Jones and Billy Carson, partners in a pony express operation, fear that their business will be superseded by the stagecoach. Farrell has also been commissioned by the government to build new roads, which will go through an area known as the Badlands, an outlaw hideout. Crooked attorney Jim Higgins and rustler Del Stone, who controls the Badlands territory, plot to destroy Farrell's business, because new roads will bring in not only more people, but more law as well, and will ultimately break up their criminal organization. When four masked riders, commissioned by Stone, attack the first stagecoach, Billy singlehandedly drives them off, thereby ensuring the safe arrival of Tom's daughter Sally. Later Billy makes a friendly wager with Farrell to compete for the government's mail contract, and Stone decides to heighten the competition in order to drive a wedge into their friendship. He sends his outlaws and Jed, one of Farrell's hired hands, to rustle Billy and Fuzzy's herd of horses. Jed is shot and killed, and suspicion falls on Tom. Before Billy and Tom can talk, Tom is shot and wounded by an unseen assailant. However, after Tom clearly states that Billy was not his attacker, both men realize that someone is trying to pit them against each other. Billy offers to take over direction of the roadbuilding until Tom recuperates. Billy and Fuzzy then track down their missing horses in the Badlands, and after a gunfight, Billy succeeds in taking one of the outlaws hostage and turns him over to the sheriff. When Sally's men refuse to work because they have not been paid, Billy is forced to use his fists to convince them to work, and then lends Sally money. To cement the loan, Sally makes Billy a partner in the mortgage to cement the loan, and has Higgins draw up the papers. Stone and Higgins plot to ruin the stagecoach line once and for all, and send gunslinger Steve Lacey and their gang of outlaws to wreak havoc. After murdering the Pony Express relay rider, driving off the horses, attacking the stagecoach and dynamiting a section of cliff over the road workers, the outlaws finally overtake Billy and demand that he turn over the money he is carrying for Sally. During Billy's struggle with one of the outlaws, Steve accidentally shoots his own man. Billy captures Steve and brings him to the sheriff, now realizing that Higgins and Stone must be behind the mayhem as they were the only two who knew he was carrying money. Billy and the sheriff proceed with a plan to entrap Higgins by sending Steve into his office while they listen through the door. When Higgins reveals his illicit affiliation with Steve, they burst in and arrest both. Stone escapes by forcing the stagecoach driver to drive at gunpoint. After a chase and a gunfight, Billy overtakes Stone, and he and his gang are arrested. Billy and Fuzzy then rush the stagecoach, which is carrying a special serum, to the next town, in order to prevent an epidemic. The two-time heroes then go into partnership with Farrell.
Al "fuzzy" St. John
A Hollywood Reporter production chart includes Karl Hackett in the cast, but his appearance in the released film has not been confirmed. A modern source includes the following actors in the cast: Al Ferguson, Bert Dillard, Bud Osborne, Artie Ortego, Herman Hack, Roy Bucko and Buck Bucko. Devil Riders was the first of twenty-three films in the "Billy Carson" series. All of the films were produced by Sigmund Neufeld and were directed by him under the name "Sam Newfield." All starred Buster Crabbe as "Billy Carson" and Al "Fuzzy" St. John as his sidekick, "Fuzzy Jones." In some of the pictures, the cast credits include photographs of Crabbe and St. John, captioned with the words "Our Old Pals Al 'Fuzzy' St. John and Buster Crabbe." The last film in the series was Overland Riders, released in August 1946. For more information on the series, consult the Series Index.