Sunday, January 14, 2018

The Lieutenant Wore Skirts

I saw that The Lieutenant Wore Skirts was on FXM Retro today, and it will be on again tomorrow morning at 7:40 AM. It'll be on again on Friday, as well as being available courtesy of Fox's MOD scheme.

Tom Ewell plays Air Force Maj. (Ret.) Gregory Whitcomb, who served with distinction in World War II and, having been retired from the service (OK, technically it wouldn't have been the Air Force in WWII but by Korea it would have been), is now working as a TV writer in Hollywood. He's married to Katy (Sheree North), who is a retired Air Force Lieutenant from having served in whatever female auxiliary force the Air Force had back in Korea. Or maybe by then women served in the regular forces; it doesn't much matter for the story. Anyhow, on the day of their third wedding anniversary, Gregory gets a letter calling him up to serve again in the reserves. What's poor Katy to do?

She thinks about going to live with him wherever he's called to serve, but eventually decides against that and comes up with a better idea: she's going to re-enlist! Now, with both of them back in the service, she's able to rent out the house as well. It solves a whole bunch of problems, as she prepares to do her two years of service in Hawaii.

Ah, but there's one thing Katy forgot to think of: the possibility that her husband might not pass his physical. After all, he's much older than her. Gregory now has a bad knee, which means that he can't serve, and he's got a wife in the Air Force whom he can't get out.

So Gregory does the next best thing, which is to move to Hawaii and live with his wife, doing his part as a military "wife" who does all the housework and all the things the women married to military guys do. Of course, all of this causes problems of its own, and the relationship between the Whitcombs starts to get tense. Ultimately, Gregory's agent Hank (Les Tremayne) comes up with the oh-so-brilliant idea of having Gregory try to get Katy declared mentally unfit (which of course she isn't) so she can be medically discharged. You'd think she'd be aghast at the idea, and of course she isn't told of it.

The Lieutenant Wore Skirts is one of those comedies that has a good idea, but goes off in a wrong direction somewhere. Gregory comes off as a jerk once he follows his wife to Hawaii, and the way he tries to drive her "insane" is not only unfunny, but something you'd think she could never forgive him for. And the resolution is abrupt and unlikely.

The Lieutenant Wore Skirts isn't something I'd stop to watch again, but I'm sure there are other people who will find it interesting.

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