Film: This is the 5th film
in the series. It is one of the few Blondie movies where you do
not see Dagwood's boss. There's no Mr. Dithers or Mr.
Radcliffe. In other words, it's not one of those
"Dagwood-gets-fired-and-tries-to-get-his-job-back" films. This
movie is EXCELLENT! Rita Hayworth's prescence really adds a lot
of magic to the movie. She's drop-dead gorgeous AND fully
clothed. There aren't very many actresses like her anymore.
She was sexy without doing or saying anything sexual. As much as
I admire Penny Singleton, I'd have to say that Rita was definitely the
scene stealer in this Blondie entry.
Blondie is going through the Bumstead
family budget. She comes to
the conclusion that she cannot buy an expensive fur coat that she's had
her eye on. At the same time, Dagwood wants to join the Trout
Club (a fishing club) where the membership costs about as much as
Blondie's coat. Just then, Dagwood's sexy ex-girlfriend (played
by the sensational Rita Hayworth) comes to visit. It's not meant
to be a social visit. Rather, the company Joan Forrester
(Hayworth) works for is doing business with Dagwood's company and she
is simply coming over to give him some papers. But Joan is still
sweet on Dagwood and Blondie gets jealous. Blondie coaxes Dagwood
into going fishing. Joan offers to drive Dagwood to the lake, but
really takes him to Lover's Lane...their old romantic spot!
Joan is not
really trying to seduce him, but rather talk to him about
Blondie's unhappiness. When she learns of Dagwood's financial
troubles...she offers to give him some money. He refuses.
Just then Joan's car breaks down. They're towed into town and
while the car is getting fixed, Dagwood and Joan go to a movie.
Dagwood's fishing buddy Marvin Williams drives Dagwood home and covers
for him...lying to Blondie about his "fishing" trip. Eventually,
things keep popping up that prove Dagwood's story to be false.
Blondie gets jealous and begins to think that Dagwood is fooling around.
Late at night, Dagwood answers the phone
and learns that he has won a
large money prize from the movie theater that he had gone to earlier
that day. He keeps it secret, because he intends to buy Blondie
the coat she wants. Dagwood calls Rita the next day to help him
pick it out so he gets Blondie the right size. Blondie catches
the two of them together and thinks that her husband is buying it for
the "old flame". A big misunderstanding, Blondie plans to leave
home with Baby Dumpling and contemplates getting a divorce (a common
theme in the Blondie films). When a lawyer with a heart (now you know this movie was made a
long time ago) convinces Blondie that jealousy has gotten the better of
her, she returns home. There are a few more misunderstandings
along the way, but the movie ends with Blondie seeing the error of her
ways and making up with Dagwood.
There are some funny scenes worth
mentioning in this film. One is
of the black man (played by character actor Willie Best) delivering
newspapers. Although his character might be considered
stereotypical by today's critics, just take it for what it is. This particular black man just
happens to be slow. Another scene is where Dagwood starts seeing
every woman in the theater as Blondie, and pictures Blondie and Baby
Dumpling as Chinese! Even Daisy turns Chinese! Speaking of
Daisy, there is a very funny moment where she gets drunk on
champagne! You have to wonder how animal trainers taught the dog
to act intoxicated. Overall, this is a highly enjoyable film that
fans of the series will enjoy. I hope I didn't spoil it too much
for you if you haven't already seen it, but there is much more that
wasn't included in this summary.
Extra Stuff: Don
Beddoe, the actor who plays Dagwood's best friend and neighbor Marvin
Williams, was also Walt Wallet in the Gasoline Alley movies. For
those who don't know, "Gasoline Alley" was a popular comic strip for
most of the 20th century. He appeared in three Blondie movies in
all, but only two as Marvin Williams. The other was Blondie for
Victory (1942) where he plays a man named Mr. Larkin.
This is only one of two movies where you
see Alvin's father Mr. Ed
Fuddle. In this movie he is played by John Qualen. The
other movie where Mr. Fuddle makes an appearance is Leave it to Blondie
(1945) as played by
actor Arthur Space. In Blondie
on a Budget (1940), Mrs. Fuddle is seen and played by Fay
Helm. She has also played Alvin's mom in three other Blondie
movies including Blondie (1938), Blondie Brings Up Baby (1939), and
Blondie Has Servant Trouble (1940).