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(1938 b 65')

En: 6 Ed: 5

Based on the comic strip by Chic Young, Dagwood needs a raise to pay debts and is suspected of having a love nest.

Dagwood Bumstead (Arthur Lake) predicts that his wife Blondie (Penny Singleton) is going to buy something. Dagwood runs over the mailman, scattering the mail. Blondie orders new furniture and signs a contract for $22.80 per month. Dagwood hides his lunch under his hat and tells his boss J. C. Dithers (Jonathan Hale) that he signed a note for former secretary Elsie Watson. Hicks tells Dagwood he has to pay $563 by tomorrow. Dagwood asks Dithers for a raise, and Dithers offers a bonus and a raise if he makes a big sale. Blondie learns her neighbor got a raise. C. P. Hazlip (Gene Lockhart) avoids salesmen, and Dagwood waits to see him in the hotel lobby. They watch a porter (Willie Best) repairing a vacuum cleaner and take it to Hazlip's suite to work on it. Dagwood meets Hazlip's daughter Elsie (Ann Doran) and leaves to find Hazlip, who calls him to bring bolts.

At home Dagwood finds Baby Dumpling (Larry Simms) in a corner, because he ran away. Dagwood and Blondie dance happily. Dagwood brings a tall sandwich to bed but can't get his mouth over it. Both Dagwood and Blondie look in on Baby Dumpling. Dagwood calls on Hazlip, and Chester sees Elsie let him in. Hicks calls on Blondie about the Elsie Watson note. Blondie calls Dagwood, and Elsie Hazlip answers, making Blondie jealous. Dithers reads the housing project was canceled and fires Dagwood. On the bus Dagwood is told his explanation won't work, and Blondie calls him a liar. Blondie surprises Dagwood with new furniture, and he faints. Chester comes in with flowers. When Elsie calls Dagwood, Blondie cries. Chester hits Dagwood and leaves. Dagwood explains there are two Elsies. He takes the car of Blondie's mother, and the furniture is re-possessed. Dagwood asks Hazlip and Elsie to help. They take the vacuum cleaner to explain, but Dagwood drives into a police car and is arrested for stealing the car and the vacuum cleaner. At the police station Dagwood hits Chester and is locked up. A judge lectures Hazlip and Dagwood; but Blondie pleads for Dagwood and blames herself. The cases are dismissed, and Hazlip gives Dagwood the housing deal. Blondie tells Dithers that Dagwood could go into business and gets him to give Dagwood much more money.

This is the first in a series of movies that ran to a record 28 with the same cast. The bumbling Dagwood and the tolerant Blondie represent the foibles of many middle-class families. In this story Dagwood is framed by circumstances that belie his innocence. Their wholesome humor in practical predicaments provides wide audiences with safe amusement.

Copyright © 2001 by Sanderson Beck

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