Michael Sauter
December 10, 1993 AT 05:00 AM EST

If you watch one after the other, Return to Lonesome Dove can’t help but suffer in comparison with the much-admired original. The surprise is that the sequel measures up as well as it does. Some vivid new characters add to the epic sprawl, but Return is best when sticking to the stories of Capt. Woodrow Call (Voight, replacing Jones) and homesteader Clara Allen (Hershey, replacing Huston). Whenever these two cross paths, they stake out some memorable territory all their own.

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