Why Marshal Matt Dillon Always Won
Those who react in a duel are faster than those who start it
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Feb 4, 2010 3:14 AM CST
Marshal Matt Dillon always let the bad guy draw first, and he always won.   (taylorjonescuts)
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(Newser) – Marshal Matt Dillon won all of his gunfights with Dodge City villains because he was a fictional hero—and was faster because he drew second, after the bad guy. Scientists have made the surprise discovery that those who react in a duel are faster than those who initiate the duel. Subjects in their study had to race against one another to push a series of buttons rather than draw guns. Those who reacted to their opponent were on average 21 milliseconds faster than those who initiated the movement.

Researchers were inspired to study the phenomenon by watching gunfights in American Westerns. Sadly, they pointed out, the extra speed by a gunfighter probably wouldn't be enough to save his life, unless he was fictional. But they're hoping lessons they've learned in the study may help them unravel problems underlying some movement disorders, reports the BBC.