Film / Calamity Jane

"Excitement? Why, I got more arrows in the back of that coach than a porcupine has got stickers!"
Calamity Jane

A 1953 movie musical based on the famous gunslinger, Calamity Jane starred Doris Day as the title character and Howard Keel as Wild Bill Hickok. One of the film's songs, "Secret Love", became an Oscar-winning hit song for Day.

Calamity Jane comes to the town of Deadwood, South Dakota one day. She decides to revitalize the local saloon by bringing them Chicago star Adelaide Adams. Unfortunately, she instead brings them Adelaide's maid, Katie Brown, whom she found trying on her costumes. Katie becomes a hit with everyone, including Jane's secret love, Lt. Daniel Gilmartin. A rivalry for his affections with Katie ensues.

This film features examples of:

  • And I'm the Queen of Sheba: The small-town theatre hall owner in Deadwood sarcastically says this when Calamity asks why he doesn't send for Adelaide Adams.
    Calamity: Why don't you send for her?
    Henry: Sure. Why don't I send for the Queen of Sheba?
    Bill: Yeah.
    Calamity: ...No good. They want Adelaide!
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Jane and Bill have this.
  • Beta Couple: Katie and Danny.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: When Katie does a big talk on how she has to go no matter what and heads to pack, a baffled Jane turns to the camera.
    Calamity: I got me the strange feeling someone's getting hustled!
  • Does Not Like Men: Jane has a song about this in the Screen-to-Stage Adaptation.
  • Dragged into Drag: Francis Fryer appears on stage as "Frances", but not willingly.
    Wild Bill Hickock: She ain't very good lookin'.
    Calamity Jane: That ain't all she ain't.
  • Historical Beauty Update: The Real Life Calamity Jane didn't look like Doris Day at all. In fact, photos of the time show she looked more like Howard Keel. No, really; Martha Jane Cannary looked more like a man than a woman.
  • Lady Looks Like a Dude: Due to her masculine appearance, Katie initially mistakes Jane for a man.
  • Love Triangle: Jane and Katie over Danny.
  • No Man of Woman Born: When Bill is forced to dress like a female Indian at the saloon, everyone laughs out loud. Angered, Bill pulls out a gun and warns he'll "put a bullet in the next man who laughs." Instant silence...except for Calamity, who keeps laughing hysterically.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Everyone reacts this way to seeing Jane in a dress.
  • The Savage Indian: Jane brags about the many she has fought and killed.
  • Tomboy And Girly Girl: Jane and Katie.
  • Weddings for Everyone: Katie and Danny, along with Jane and Bill.