Rascal (1969)

Time was, this country was one great big expansive opportunity to do whatever a person wanted to. There weren’t any rules and quotas set up by feminists, liberals, and activist judges because Big Government knew what was best for you. You needed to drive all over the upper Midwest during the summer to sell real estate and leave your kid at home by himself? Knock yourself out, bub! Just make sure you bring a big ass turkey home for Thanksgiving!

If this happened today, some butched-up prune with a college degree would be hauling your kid away to juvie while your butt got put in the pokey for endangering the welfare of a child. But back when this country was God’s most awesome creation ever? You’d turn up just in time to help win the big horse vs. automobile race!

It’s the last day of school for Sterling North and his class. Their teacher is interrogating them about what they’re going to be doing during the summer break. One drip is going to mess around with a sewing machine. Another tool brags about going to New York and Bunker Hill. And Sterling? He’ll be doing what most neglected kids do over the summer – working on his canoe.

Sterling’s real summer adventure though begins when his dog Wowser scares off a bunch of raccoons, but one gets left behind and Sterling’s dad is so freaking rad that he just gives Sterling a look that says “that coon is part of the family, go on and take him home!”

The neighbors aren’t as excited to have a racoon (Rascal) living near them as Sterling and his dad are. They’re whining about their chickens, their gardens, and this horse named Donnybrook who’s prone to be real wild.

Here’s the thing about Rascal that no one knew though – he’s a frigging horse whisperer! Seriously! Whenever Rascal is riding in the chariot the horse pulls, Donnybrook is all kick ass and fast! It isn’t until Rascal makes a surprise appearance at the horse vs. car race that Donnybrook beats all the odds and wins!

It was good for Rascal as well because he was on the verge of getting his butt dropped back into the woods after he single-handedly destroyed most of main street when he got loose in the general store! There’s nothing like a big win in sports though to make people forget what a turd you were!

Unfortunately for Rascal, Sterling, and his father, they had busybody broads who knew what was best for everyone, even back then! This time, it’s Sterling’s tight ass sister Theo. She thinks that some old hag was hired to take care of Sterling while she was at her job in Chicago and while their father was out on the road. The old hag didn’t like Wowser and Rascal though, so she didn’t get the job.

When Theo comes home for Thanksgiving and finds out the woman was never hired she gets real pissy and makes everyone’s life hell, telling their father that he needs to grow up and laying a guilt trip on him for leaving Sterling with only a yellow dog and a racoon.

Uh, let me tell you something little missy. If I was in a tight spot with my back against the wall, fighting off Charlie is some dead end tunnel, there wouldn’t be two guys I’d rather have at my side for that knife fight than that yellow dog and that racoon. There are just some bonds that transcend species!

Except for when Rascal goes into heat! Then its every horny coon for himself!

Rascal hits puberty, bites Sterling in an effort to break out and get his paws on some racoon jugs, and the next thing all of us know, Sterling is using his canoe to sail away with Rascal so the little fellow can finally get some action. And be set free in the woods. But us guys know, it was mainly about the action.

Look, I won’t lie to you. All in all, this was a pretty sissy movie that even went so far as to have some Wonder Years-style narration by an adult Sterling to make sure we got all the life lessons he learned (coons like to screw) and it’s a pretty standard Disney animal movie set in the early 20th century which means you’re going to be seeing that same residential street you always see in these Disney movies.

Sterling (Bill Mumy of Lost In Space fame) is just about the nicest twerp you’ll ever meet (it helps that Sterling wrote the book, I imagine) and you can’t help but roll your eyes that the only trouble he got into when his old man was gone was when Rascal stole an egg and an ear of corn. Still, you’ll probably never have another opportunity to ever seen a racoon drink root beer straight from the bottle.

© 2013 MonsterHunter

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