Man's Favorite Sport? (1964) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • The author of a best-selling fishing guide is actually incredibly inexperienced when it comes to the sport, which causes mayhem when he is entered into a competition.

  • Roger Willoughby is considered to be a leading expert on sports fishing. He's written books on the subject and is loved by his customers in the sporting goods department at Abercrombie and Fitch, where he works. There's only one problem however: he's never been fishing in his life. When the store owner enters him in a fishing contest, mayhem ensues.

  • Roger Willoughby works at a sporting goods store and is the author of a best selling guide to fishing, even though he has never fished. However Abby inveigles him to enter a fishing tournament.


The synopsis below may give away important plot points.


  • Roger Willoughby (Rock Hudson) arrives late to his work because a lady has occupied his parking space. He tries to move her car but he only succeeds in getting a parking fine by a police officer (James Westerfield), who doesn't believe his weird story. Roger is a fishing tools expert and shop assistant who has even written a book about the sport. He teaches Major Phipps (Roscoe Karns) how to use a rodding cane at the department store where he works in, at Abercrombie and Fitch, in the fishing sports department. Roger gives him advice which he has heard from somebody else.

    Roger's customers, Abigail Page (Paula Prentiss) and Isolde 'Easy' Mueller (Maria Perschy), want Roger to participate on the fishing competition in lake C..... Easy is a public relations officer, and Abigail is an important person of the community. Roger will compete against Major Phipps. However, Rock tries to get out of the idea, as he has not idea about fishing. His boss, William Cadwalader (John McGiver) pushes him to win the competition.

    Abigail and Easy are both interested in Roger, although they realise fast that he has no idea about fishing. They pay John Screaming Eagle (Norman Alden) not to say anything about Roger being useless with fish. John is also a small conman. He isn't unable to put up even his net. Roger's boss pushes Roger to go, so he can't say no. Both girls watch him doing stupid things, and during a lunch together they laugh about a caterpillar which fell onto his salad, and his eating it subsequently.

    Abby helps Roger, explaining things for him. For example, she recommends him to use a scooter, but it ends up being driven by a bear. Also, when she tries to teach him how to drive a boat to go to the location of the catch, he ends up almost drowning and inside a safety balloon-like trousers, which he doesn't recommend his boss for selling.

    Roger can't even swim, but Abigail is attracted to him anyway. The frist time Abigail makes him use a fishing cane, he catches a fish. Roger feels disgusted by the slimmy fish. He loses his catch and pushes her into the water. He catches another fish with his baggy clothes after falling to the river. Roger is made to hold a fish for hours as part of his training.

    Easy tells them that another champion, Filroy from Chicago, is going to compete, so that he can quit. However, Roger knows that he can't say his boss that, so the girls plot to put one of his arms in plaster so that he will have an excuse not to participate. They put the plaster after he has seen her breasts due to the heavy rain. The girls go to meet Filroy, but he is with a broken arm in a plaster, so they can't have Roger hurt at the same time. So now they need to take the plaster out.

    Roger waits for the call of his girlfriend. Abigail asks for a pill at night as she is interested in him. No surprise, she tries to entice a kiss from him, but he says he has no time. She takes a pill and falls asleep in Roger's room. Furthermore, nobody tells him that Tex Connors (Charlene Holt) is about to arrive the following morning. When she arrives the day of the contest, she sees Easy trying to get Roger out of a stuck sleeping bag. He says that he was trying to try the new equipment. Tex also sees Abigail going out of Roger's room so she almost splits up with him.

    To win, Roger reads his own book. The book is useless for him. Screaming Eagle watches him as he fishes a fish without even noticing it. Roger is also lucky the second day, when he catches one falling from a tree: a fish commits suicide when the thread gets tangled on a tree brunch. After that, he decides to kiss Abigail, but she pronounces it of poor quality.

    The third day, the bear scares him causing him to catch another fish. He wins the competition and promises himself never to fish again. He doesn't want to celebrate his win with his boss. A weeping Abigail tells him to "come out" and tell the truth. Mr Bagley (Regis Toomey) and Mr Skaggs (Forrest Lewis), the organizers, hear his confession. He renounces because a bear helped him. Major Phipps has won and Cadwalader fires Roger.

    Abigail has left. Easy doesn't want to tell him where she is, but he pays to Screaming Eagle to tell him and take him there. Abigail tells him to go away, but she doesn't really want so. A storm is about to break in. Roger finally splits up with Tex. It starts raining, so he gets into her huge sleeping bag.

    Major Phipps gives Cadwalader an idea: to annouce that if Roger could win with the right equipment, anybody can.

    It rains so much that Abigail's sleeping bag floats by with them both deeply sleeping on it. Cadwalader even gives a pay rise to Roger.

    Roger kisses Abigail.


    A sepia-coloured scene: Marcia (Kathie Brown) tells John (unnamed) that he doesn't need to kiss her as the film has already finished.

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