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Children need heroes. Boys in particular need stalwart men of boldness, to inspire their own manly inclinations. Although the common challenges of family living require courage and imagination, young people seldom have the life experience to recognize or appreciate this fact. They want more obvious heroism.

To fill this need comes Third Lieutenant Stanley, the hero of Paul Rhymer's parody of the formula adventure stories for young adults. This unstoppable young Lieutenant, and his incapable sweetheart, face unlikely foes, all described in unbelievable prose! In these stories, all villains are counterfeiters, teeth can glitter hoarsely, and Lady Margaret is always ready with a kiss, a hug, or a titter, smirk, chuckle or rude guffaw. These cascades of cliffhangers are far from great literature, but they are unquestionably "vigorous fiction!"

The stories taught their readers patience, oratory (for they are frequently read out loud),and, above all, vigilance. As with Third Lieutenant Stanley, one never knows when the next group of clowns, snake charmers, piano tuners, headhunters, or clarinet virtuosos one meets might turn out to be counterfeiters! - by Sarah Cole

In an interview from 1970, Bill Idelson tells where the idea of Third Lieutenant Clinton Stanley came from: {{{HEAR}}}

Third Lieutenant Stanley is a shining example for every American boy to follow 

+ In episode 38-xx-xx Books, several Third Lieutenant Stanley books are mentioned:

Third Lieutenant Clinton Stanley on the Campus or Winning Laurels for Old Alma Mater - in this book, he plays football for both Harvard and Yale - at the same time - because he attends both universities!  He even scores a touchdown for both teams on the same run because:
They line up the two gridirons in a row.  Third Lieutenant Stanley gets the ball an' runs the length of one gridiron an' then keeps right on going an' runs the length of the other gridiron.  Two touchdowns at one an' the same time.
Later, he hazes 15 college freshman single-handed!
You better watch out, said one big lubberly freshman.  But Third Lieutenant Stanley only smiled.  His hand darted out with the speed of lightning an' a moment later his victim lay writhing on the campus with a broken leg.
Another exciting part of the book involves the Lieutenant landing in his airplane right on a baseball diamond where Yale is playing out in the field.  He times it just right where he makes a catch of a high fly that wins the game for dear ol' Yale.

Other Third Lieutenant Stanley books are mentioned as well: Third Lieutenant Clinton Stanley's Big Love Affair which he had borrowed from Blue Tooth Johnson.  One of the more unusual things that happens in the book is that the Third Lieutenant assassinates a sheik by hitting him in the head with a... camel!  Another is Third Lieutenant Clinton Stanley as President of a South Sea Island Republic.  And yet another volume is called, Third Lieutenant Clinton Stanley in the Tropics or Twenty Years among Savage Cannibals.

A bit in one book (not mentioned which one) had the Lieutenant's mother walking across a tightrope over Niagara Falls.

Artwork by Coni Dowden
These books were apparently before his nemesis became involved in counterfeiting.

+ Title mentioned: Third Lieutenant Stanley, President of the South Seas (unknown episode)

+ Title mentioned: Third Lieutenant Stanley Among the Man-eating Sharks or Defying the Finny Fiends of the Caspian Sea

+ Title mentioned: Third Lieutenant Stanley's Big Affair

+ Title mentioned: Third Lieutenant Stanley Amid the Frozen Alps or Mystery of the Poisoned Moccasin

+ In episode 38-08-01 Vic Needs New Neckties, Rush reveals the fact that Third Lieutenant Stanley hits a counterfeiting Arab over the head with a necktie rack.

+ In episode 39-03-10 Sade - a Slick Operator, Rush reads about counterfeiting Eskimoes and Third Lieutenant Stanley hypnotizing a crazy polar bear.

+ In episode 39-06-19 Nicer Scott Has a Ten Dollar Bill, Rush mentions the title of a book: Third Lieutenant Stanley on the Campus or The Thrilling Capture of the Bank Robbing Professors at Yale College.

+ In episode 40-01-22 R. J. Konk's Improved Portrait, Rush reads from an unnamed Third Lieutenant Stanley novel, about the circus, with the Lieutenant fighting four lions:  {{{HEAR}}}

+ In episode 40-03-19 Bess Letter; Grocery List on Top, Rush reads from Third Lieutenant Stanley in the United States or Outwitting the New York Stock Market Plungers: {{{HEAR}}}

Third Lieutenant Stanley's girl in this book is "The Countess", rather than Lady Margaret.

+ In episode 40-04-17 - Vic's Heart-shaped Face, Rush reads a bit from a Third Lieutenant Stanley book, which is all about counterfeiting South Sea Islanders: {{{HEAR}}}

+ In episode 40-05-06 Working Out Hank's Indebtedness, Rush reads a bit from a Third Lieutenant Stanley book, which concerns counterfeiting cannibals (edited): {{{HEAR}}}

+ In episode 40-06-02 Teaching Cigar Smoking to Chinbunny, Rush reads a bit from an unnamed Third Lieutenant Stanley book: {{{HEAR}}}

+ In episode 40-06-17 Mr. Sludge to Sleep Overnight at Gooks, Sade reads a bit from an unnamed Third Lieutenant Stanley book: {{{HEAR}}}

+ In episode 40-07-13 Short Bio of Little Dipper, Rush reads a bit from an unnamed Third Lieutenant Stanley book about a new character: Jack Woodward, who is described as, "A sturdy, well-built lad of 15 who loves the great out of doors." Also, "Has straight, even teeth, the color or rich cream. There was a streak of mischief in his makeup and he loved to play boyish pranks."

The book goes on to say he has four brothers, all who are feeble-minded.

"Jack is well-versed in Indian lore and knew all the secrets of the forest. Rabbits and squirrels were his playmates and even the birds in the trees responded..."

+ In episode 40-10-xx Shake Hands With R.J. Konk Rush reads about counterfeiting South American Pygmies (edited): {{{HEAR}}}

+ In episode 40-11-22 Third Lieutenant Stanley - Bright Kentucky Hotel, Rush reads from an unnamed Third Lieutenant Stanley novel: Third Lieutenant Stanley gave the villainous crew of counterfeiting smugglers one supercilious glance. Then his eyes softened as he turned and gazed at the oval face of Lady Margaret. The beautiful woman smiled bravely, revealing twin rows of perfect teeth the rich color of old ivory. Her hand trembled slightly as she twirled her dainty pink parasol and her small foot in its fashionable French spat tapped nervously. Third Lieutenant Stanley touched her arm. "Let us share a hug an' kiss before we fight these miserable wretches," he grunted. Nothing loath, the beautiful woman lifted her veil an' thrust her lovely head forward. Jabbering amongst themselves, the counterfeiting smugglers watched the exchange of tender caresses an' there was a burst of rude laughter as Third Lieutenant Stanley began to cry. "Sweetheart," he blubbered, "Five minutes from now I may be dead. But, sweetheart, I want you to know that my love for you transcends everything in...   The handsome young officer faced death valiantly. "You fellows can go jump in the creek, I'm not scared," he growled to the leader of the counterfeiting smugglers. But for Lady Margaret he had a sweet smile an' eyes that twinkled merrily. "Give me one more kiss an' one more hug before I kick the bucket, sweetheart," he gloated. The beautiful woman simpered and coquettishly pretended that the mother-of-pearl buttons on her fashionable French spats had come unbuttoned. Finally, blushing furiously, she lifted her veil an' thrust forward her lovely head. "Just one hug an' one kiss now," she warned an' Third Lieutenant Stanley howled loudly his satisfaction an' approval.

Later, Rush tells about a section that lies deeper inside the book: The counterfeiting smugglers try to murder Third Lieutenant Stanley by tying him to a tree an' smearing melted marshmallow all over his clothes an' releasing two grizzly bears from a cage. Grizzly bears are very fond of melted marshmallow so it looks like curtains for Third Lieutenant Stanley. 

+ In episode 40-12-31 Howard has a New Harness, Rush reads aloud from an Third Lieutenant Stanley book. The Lieutenant's foes are once again counterfeiting South Sea Islanders (edited): {{{HEAR}}}

+ In episode 41-03-25 Muddled Shopping Money Rush rehashes what's read from Third Lieutenant Clinton Stanley Among the Counterfeiting Left-Handed Natives of the Orange Sea or How Luck and Honesty Won Fame and Fortune.

In the book, Third Lieutenant Stanley faced death by drowning but escaped through a secret tunnel. Later, he is bound and gagged and all he can do is flex his muscles. He gets Lady Margaret to put a bullet on his arm. He flexes his muscle and the bullet shoots across the river and kills a counterfeiting, left-handed native of the Orange Sea!

+ In episode 41-05-30 Five Men from Maine, Rush borrowed a Third Lieutenant Stanley book from Vernon Peggles.

The book starts out with Third Lieutenant Stanley and Lady Margaret under the power of counterfeiting deep sea divers.

+ In episode 41-10-14 Vic Declines Cornet Lessons, Rush wants to read aloud from a Third Lieutenant Stanley book that deals with coat and hat thieves in the Sahara Desert, but no one wants to hear it.

+ Rush tells about counterfeiting parachute jumpers in episode 41-12-09 Hank Appointed Lodge's Best-Looking Man.

+ In episode 41-12-xx Left and Right-handed Stacey Yopp, Rush reads about counterfeiting coffee ground fortune tellers.

+ In episode 42-08-xx Washrag Collection, Rush is reading from a Third Lieutenant Stanley novel at the beginning of the program but neither does he mention the title nor the plot.

+ In episode 42-02-24 Rawhide Shoestrings, Rush reads briefly about counterfeiting voice teachers.

+ In episode 43-10-26 Honorary Lodge Member, Russell reads about counterfeiting snake charmers.

+ In episode 44-07-20 Uncle Fletcher Talks Business, Russell reads from an unknown Third Lieutenant Stanley novel at the beginning of the program but does not mention the title: {{{HEAR}}}.  Lady Margaret has her arm wrenched by Third Lieutenant Stanley and also plays the guitar. The Third Lieutenant is also attacked by a boa.

+ In episode 44-08-21 Turtle Soup, Russell reads from an unknown Third Lieutenant Stanley novel at the beginning of the program but does not mention the title. The passage read is about kissing.

+ In episode 44-07-25 Mr. Donahue Hates Vacations, Russell reads extensively from an unnamed Third Lieutenant Stanley book about counterfeiting headhunters. Other than the mushy stuff with Lady Margaret, the Third Lieutenant has his hands full with two mountain lions, a lizard and head-hunting counterfeiters. His weapon arsenal is very impressive: two automatic revolvers, a dagger, a pound of dynamite, a pile of poison, a length of stout twine, a sealed drum of deadly gas, a flask of acid, a basket of [unintelligible], a jar containing a black widow spider and a leather case full of straight-edged razors.

+ In episode 44-09-11 Honeymoon Guide, Russell reads from an unnamed book: {{{HEAR}}}

+ In episode 45-12-03 A Slow, Dull, Tiresome Evening, Rush reads aloud from a volume of Third Lieutenant Stanley. The Third Lieutenant is attacked by counterfeiting natives and oddly, is wearing a yellow uniform.

+ In episode 46-07-04 Women's Auxiliary, Rush reads aloud from a volume of Third Lieutenant Stanley. The Third Lieutenant is battling counterfeiting clothes manufacturersHe has a solid gold revolver in a mink holster.  He also has twin rows of teeth(!) - of course, the color of old ivory.

+ In episode 46-07-25 Moving to Peoria, Rush reads aloud from a volume of Third Lieutenant Stanley.  This one is about counterfeiting diesel mechanics.

+ In episode 46-08-22 Sade and Mis' Kessler Fight, Rush reads aloud from a volume of Third Lieutenant Stanley fiction and the villain is a counterfeiting clarinet virtuoso.  

The book tells of the Lieutenant waving a crimson pennant. When asked by Vic why the Lieutenant would do this, Rush states that it's done by the Lieutenant to show he liked the kisses from Lady Margaret. If he doesn't enjoy the kisses, he "whips out a green pennant and waves it." He also has a brown pennant he waves if he enjoys a hug she gives him and a purple pennant if he doesn't enjoy the hug. He also has a grey pennant if he enjoyed the kiss but not the hug. There's also a burnt orange pennant to wave if he enjoyed the hug but not the kiss. If he enjoyed both the hug and the kiss, there's a maroon pennant to wave. There's also a striped pennant.

+ In episode 38-01-10 Hawaiian Islands Itinerary, Rush reads silently from a 3rd Lieutenant Stanley novel, but does not give the title.  The only detail revealed is that of a 15' rattlesnake.

From an unknown episode:

Third Lieutenant Stanley stopped a rushing locomotive with his bare hands, although it traveled 12 additional feet.  Third Lieutenant Stanley was unhurt, although bruised.  In the very next chapter of the unnamed book, he hopped over a 50 foot cliff, thanks to the fact that he stringed several live rattlesnakes together to form a rope. (source)

  • Harvard college's football squad
  • Yale college's football squad
  • Yale college's baseball squad
  • Sheik
  • Savage cannibals
  • Sharks
  • Crazy polar bear
  • Bank-robbing professors of Yale college
  • Four huge lions
  • Stock market plungers of New York City
  • 4 circus lions
  • Comanche Indian chief
  • 16 Comanche braves on horseback
  • Grizzly bears
  • Rattlesnake
  • boa
  • 12' boa constrictor 
  • 15' Rattlesnake
  • Coat and hat thieves of the Sahara Desert
  • Mountain lions
  • Lizard
  • Counterfeiting Arabs
  • Counterfeiting Eskimos
  • Counterfeiting South American Pygmies
  • Counterfeiting smugglers
  • Counterfeiting South Sea Islanders (for the second time)
  • Counterfeiting left-handed natives of the Orange Sea
  • Counterfeiting deep sea divers
  • Counterfeiting coffee ground fortune tellers
  • Counterfeiting cannibals
  • Counterfeiting voice teachers
  • Counterfeiting snake charmers
  • Counterfeiting headhunters
  • Counterfeiting natives
  • Counterfeiting clothes manufacturers
  • Counterfeiting diesel mechanics
  • Counterfeiting clarinet virtuoso 
  • Counterfeiting lion-tamers  
  • Counterfeiting animal trainers

  • THE COUNTESS - She is lavished with expensive gifts, including a bicycle made of solid gold. 
  • COL. ARTHUR B. UPSTART - a man of soldierly bearing and undaunted courage (in an unknown episode.)
  • SECOND LIEUTENANT BOB WAMBOLT - predecessor to Third Lieutenant Stanley in books read by Rush in mid-1930's (many unknown episodes)
  • CAPTAIN CHALMERS - from unknown episodes, mentioned in articles and by fans

1 comment:

  1. My two favorite things on Vic & Sade are anything to do with the Lodge and the Third Lieutenant Clinton Stanley books. I'm a fan of the type of books being spoofed and have read many of them. I think the ones that come closest to the Clinton Stanley books is the Rover Boys. Even the official title of The Rover Boys: "The Rover Boys Series For Young Americans" recalls the "Third Lieutenant Stanley is a shining example for every American boy to follow" at the beginning of every Third Lieutenant Stanley book. The best is "Third Lieutenant Stanley in the United States or Outwitting the New York Stock Market Plungers" because there is a Rover Boys books "The Rover Boys in New York, or, Saving their Father's Honor" which deals with stock market plungers and other similar things. The Third Lieutenant Stanley excerpt sounds like it could have been lifted directly from the Rover Boys book, with the heavy jowelled villain with the Irish name and checkered suit. It doesn't even sound like a spoof, which makes it even funnier if you're familiar with what it's spoofing. Too bad Paul Rhymer didn't actually write a complete Third Lieutenant Stanley book instead of just the brief excerpts we get in the broadcasts. it would have been sensational