Plot: We open on yet another courier trying to reach Senor Verdugo, only to be chased down and robbed by bandits. Fortunately, this one survives to reach the inn at Monterey, where his arrival interrupts Diego's attempts to come up with a plan to find the man he shot in the left arm in the last episode. Learning of the courier's plight, he rides to Verdugo's home, where he spies Verdugo talking to Lee van Cleef's buddy from last week about some matter. And Verdugo's left arm is in a sling. Diego's attempt to gain an audience with the man is stymied by Anna Marie, who claims her father is laid up with an old injury and can't see anyone. Diego refuses her demand he leave, and the two sit in silence in the parlor until the old man comes along. He seems surprisingly happy to see Diego, and is happier still when Diego tells him that not only did he arrange for two soldiers to deliver the money from Los Angeles, he told them to take the less traveled Guadalupe Valley Trail instead of El Camino Real. It's around that point Verdugo's servant, Pablo, brings the wine and the old man and Diego share a toast.
As it turns out, Diego was lying, and Sergeant Garcia and Corporal Reyes will be coming by the El Camino Real, while Zorro waits at the way station on the Guadalupe Trail in a trap. Sure enough, the bandits arrive at the way station, including Pablo, but Zorro opts to do nothing. Instead he heads for El Camino Real to ensure the money gets there safely. Unfortunately, Garcia had the bright idea to take the road less traveled to throw off any would-be robbers (and to pass by a famous winery), and so he's coming down the Guadalupe Trail. Zorro tries to warn him, but since he isn't on Tornado (since it would have been hard for Diego to bring him along), the soldiers book it for the way station, where they are promptly captured, and Reyes is wounded. Then the sergeant is forced to dig graves for both of them, as Zorro tries to signal him of a plan, which eventually succeeds, sort of. Before Zorro and Garcia can challenge the two remaining bandits, Verdugo arrives, and it turns out he's innocent. He had hired the bandit on Pablo's suggestion, to watch over the soldiers. He tries to fight them alone, but with only one good arm, he's having some trouble until Zorro crashes in through a window (the sergeant's attempt to follow is somewhat less successful). Pablo is able to escape, and Zorro takes off into the countryside.
Quote of the Episode: Diego - 'So even the innkeeper knows how much money Los Angeles is sending Senor Verdugo.'
Times Zorro marks a "Z": 0 (0 overall).
Other: We had one "baboso" this week, when Garcia asked Reyes what everyone expects them to do with this large sum of money they're delivering, and Reyes responds, 'Steal it?' Well, yes, Corporal, they probably do expect that, no more often than you guys gets paid, but that's not the point.
Pablo had some good turns of phrase. When he explained why they had to bury Garcia and Reyes, he said if it was known they killed soldiers, they'd hang like so many dried peppers. Whoever is behind this plot - and I'll just mention Anna Marie says Senor Romero of Santa Cruz is away on business this week - is hiring some erudite goons, to be sure.
In all the time Zorro wasted trying to pantomime his plan to Sergeant Garcia, he could have just snuck up and kayoed the bad guy 5 times over. That said, I laughed at the part where Zorro mimics hitting the guy over the head with the pommel of his sword, and Garcia responds out loud, 'But I haven't got a sword.' It's like, you cannot be that dumb, sergeant.
I have to assume it was because Zorro wasn't riding Tornado that Garcia and Reyes ran from him. Garcia actually mentions that Zorro rides a black horse, so the implication is he thinks it's a common robber impersonating Zorro, that's all I can figure.
Now that Senor Verdugo is cleared of suspicion, the search for the one behind the robberies will have to continue.