I had just finished watching Her Husband’s Affairs (1947) in which he stars opposite of Lucille Ball.
Margaret Weldon (Lucille Ball), bride of advertising man William Weldon (Franchot Tone), finds her honeymoon constantly delayed by her husband’s marketing schemes. Their latest planned trip is postponed when the Tappel hat account rejects Bill’s slogan and insists on a celebrity endorsement instead. Bill hurries to the baseball stadium to win Mayor Dandy Jim Harker’s endorsement, but the mayor refuses to try on the hat until Margaret tricks him into repeating Bill’s slogan, an event that is trumpeted by the press.
When Bill’s boss, J. B. Cruikshank (Edward Everett Horton), gives Margaret credit for landing the account, Bill accuses his wife of meddling in his affairs. As Margaret and Bill head for the travel agent to pick up their tickets to Jamaica, Professor Emil Glinka, a mad inventor whose crazy schemes Bill is intent upon promoting, asks for an advance to develop an embalming fluid that can convert people into glass.
When Glinka hands Bill a sample of his formula and claims that it will also remove whiskers without shaving, Bill convinces Cruikshank to sell the product to shaving cream tycoon Peter Winterbottom.
To promote the cream, Bill stages a grandiose banquet at which all the town’s dignitaries will demonstrate its miraculous abilities. Bill’s plan backfires, however, when the cream is discovered to stimulate abnormal hair growth, causing Mrs. Winterbottom to grow a mustache overnight and the governor to sprout a full-length beard. When Winterbottom demands Bill’s arrest, Margaret saves the day by suggesting that the cream be sold as a hair restorer for bald men. Resentful of his wife’s interference, Bill insists upon perfecting the compound as a hair remover.
As a hair restorer the formula proves to be a fiasco, after the governor eagerly smears it on his bald pate, causing his head to turn to glass. When the governor orders the arrest of Glinka and Bill, Margaret warns her husband of his peril. Hurrying to Glinka’s tool shed lab, Bill discovers that the professor has just created a fluid that gives flowers perpetual life by turning them into stone. Glinka then flees out an open window just in time to avoid the police, but Bill is apprehended.
Mistaking a corpse that Glinka has procured for one of his experiments for the professor himself, the police arrest Bill for murder, and when the tool shed explodes in flames, all evidence of Bill’s innocence is destroyed. Realizing that his murder trial would serve as a stupendous publicity stunt to promote the “forever flower,” Bill later arranges with Glinka to stay out of sight until the day the verdict is to be rendered.
During the trial, Bill focuses on the virtues of the forever flower rather than on his innocence, prompting Margaret, who is unhappy with her husband’s defense, to testify that he is insane. As the judge deliberates the merits of committing Bill, Bill and Margaret argue and Margaret slugs Bill with the forever flower and finds that it has turned to stone. Realizing that Glinka must be alive, Margaret locates the professor and drags him to court.
After the case is dismissed, Bill extols the virtues of the forever flower to the press, at which time it wilts and dies. When Margaret is hailed as a hero, Bill makes her promise once again to stop interfering in his affairs.
While this film is not one that Franchot Tone is really know for, it is cute and he and Lucille do have good on-screen chemistry (pun intended). While he does have his own zany moments he is really the “straight man” of the couple and this movie does showcase the zaniness to come from Lucille Ball later in her career.