Paladin (played by Richard Boone) is a gun for hire. Not your typical ruffian gun for hire, though. A cultured and well-bred man, who, due to a gambling problem, was shunned by his family and as a result had to find a means of supporting himself. Quick on the draw and an excellent marksman, Paladin settled in San Francisco and set up his business. His business card, sporting a chess piece (fittingly the knight), is well known throughout the West of the United States. Though he is very good at his job, which is why he can charge an amazing $1,000 for his services, Paladin is a man who prefers a good game of chess or glass of fine brandy to a gunfight. These were the last episodes of the three-time Emmy nominated truly adult Western series.
Episode 1: Brotherhood: Paladin finds himself in the middle of a feud between two Indian brothers.
Episode 2: Bob Wire: A barbed wire salesman hires Paladin to escort him to the town of his next delivery. Salesman does not tell Paladin exactly what they are in for and the gunslinger finds himself in the middle of a range war.
Episode 3: The Debutante: A rich older woman hires Paladin to find her long lost granddaughter, who is about to be married.
Episode 4: Unforgiving Minute: Paladin becomes involves in a marital fight between a peasant man and his wife, who yearns for a more sophisticated lifestyle.
Episode 5: American Primitive: Helping his friend Sheriff Backwater (played by Harry Morgan), Paladin is on the hunt for a dangerous fugitive who wants to find the killer of his son.
Episode 6: The Burning Tree: A man who has seen his seven wives die is now going to stand trial for their deaths. Paladin is hired to bring him to his trial.
Episode 7: Cage at Mac Naab: A woman, whose husband is facing the death penalty, hires Paladin to prove the man’s innocence. What happens next no one, most of all Paladin, could have predicted.
Episode 8: The Caravan: After making it out of a civil war, an Indian Queen hires Paladin to escort her and her subjects to the middle of the desert.
Episode 9: The Walking Years: Paladin is drugged via a drink in a bar and wakes to find himself in chains in a warehouse. He is held there with a woman and a man he has not seen for years.
Episode 10: Sweet Lady of the Moon: Paladin is hired to escort an insane murderer from prison to an asylum. He has to keep the man safe from the vengeful family members of his victims.
Episode 11: The Savages: Hired by an art collector, Paladin is to lead him to the hidden forest sanctuary of a reclusive but incredibly talented sculptor. The real reason for finding the sculptor comes to light once they find him.
Episode 12: Eve of St. Elmo: A wheelchair bound colonel hires Paladin. Once the reason comes to light Paladin is not sure he wants the job no matter what he is being paid.
Episode 13: Lady of the Fifth Moon: A young Chinese heiress needs Paladin’s protection due to threats from assassins as she attempts to travel back to her native land.
Episode 14: Two Plus One: On his way to meet up with a French woman, Paladin is diverted when he has to save a young Indian woman from two criminals. After he saves her she is in his debt and will not leave his side making his romantic rendez-vous a little tricky.
Episode 15: The Black Bull: A retired matador from Paladin’s past tricks the gun for hire to his house and there he keeps him chained in the basement. The matador’s intention is to make Paladin into a bull he will attempt to kill.
Episode 16: Face of a Shadow: A bank hires Paladin to find a rancher and collect $10,000 from him. Paladin finds him but the rancher is dead and the money is missing.