Harry Shelby longs for romance, but all of his knowledge, we are told, has been garnered from romance novels from the local library. One day, Harry whistles and waves at a passing girl. She admonishes, "Little boys should be seen and not heard." Harry looks down at his knickers and longs for the day he can wear long pants.
Coincidentally, his father and mother are discussing that very subject, and, against his mother's wishes (she says the short pants are keeping him off the streets and out of trouble), the father gives him his first pair of baggy, long pants.
One day, Bebe Blair's limousine has a flat tire in front of Harry's house. While waiting for her chauffeur to change the tire, she reads two letters, one telling her of the long prison term she faces for her illegal activities, and another from her crook boyfriend who says he hasn't forgotten his "Baby Face" and will marry her as soon as he gets back.
In the meantime, Harry comes along, and is immediately smitten by Bebe. He rides his bicycle around and around the limousine performing various stunts. She finally invites him into the automobile, kisses him, and he falls backward out of the car onto the ground. While Harry is in his house talking to Priscilla, who is in love with Harry, Bebe leaves without a word. However, he finds the letter written by Bebe's boyfriend and thinks she left it for him.
Soon we see Harry and Priscilla's wedding day, but Harry hasn't forgotten Bebe. When he sees a picture of Bebe in the newspaper with an accompanying article about her being sent to jail, he vows to go to her side. His father chides Harry trying to get him to forget Bebe. As for the wedding, his father asks, "How are you going to get out of it now. It's too late." Harry spies his father's pistol and begins to imagine a plan to take Priscilla into the woods and shoot her. Later, he goes to her window and invites her to take a walk with him. He in his tux, and she in her wedding gown, stroll through the woods. Although Harry fully intends the shoot her, a series of mishaps and a lack of resolve on his part make the plan fall through. Next we see Priscilla and Harry's mother on the porch. He has called off the wedding, gone away, and not revealed where he is going.
At the county jail, Bebe has made her escape. She runs into Harry outside the jail, and he helps her elude the police. Over the coming days, he is duped into assisting her with several robberies, although Harry somehow remains clueless that what they are doing is illegal.
At a nightclub, we see the featured entertainer on the phone with her boyfriend. The boyfriend tells her Bebe has escaped, and she knows they are the ones who "squealed" on her to the cops. Later, while the girl is out, Bebe and Harry come into the dressing room. When the girl returns, the two women fight. Bebe beats up the girl and throws her out. Harry suddenly realizes the type of woman he has become involved with and says it's over between them. Before he can get out the door, the boyfriend comes in, and he and Bebe have a shootout. A crowd swarms in with Harry caught up in the melee.
We then see him in jail, arm in a sling, apparently from a stray bullet. An officer releases him, and Harry walks home. As he enters the house, his mother, father and Priscilla are at the table, heads bowed, eyes closed, saying grace. Harry sits down and bows his head. As they open their eyes and see Harry sitting there, they jump up, embrace him and welcome him.
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copyright 2000 by Tim Lussier, all rights reserved