powered by AFI
While driving toward Chicago, Dr. Hedy Fredericks picks up three hitchhiking Marines, who coincidentally are named Tommy, Dick and Harry Smith, then makes a stop in Blithefield, her home town. Hedy is startled to find that Blithefield has been transformed from the sleepy little town she knew as a child into a bustling defense plant center. Despite the changes, Hedy recognizes a man standing outside a restaurant as her childhood friend, Smedley Hoover, and waves him over to her car. The man is actually test pilot Morgan Hale and becomes annoyed at Hedy when his lunch date, the jealous Lola Cross, assumes he is flirting and deserts him. Hedy then goes to see her father, Dr. J. H. "Doc" Fredericks, whose office is flooded with patients. Although Doc tries to persuade her to go into practice with him, Hedy insists that she is leaving for Chicago in the morning to take a less demanding job as a medical researcher. Hoping to change her mind, Doc asks Hedy to visit a childhood friend, Stella Livingston, whose face was badly cut in a defense plant accident. When Hedy, a trained plastic surgeon, sees the wounds on Stella's face, she decides to perform surgery on her at once. As soon as the operation is over, however, Hedy declares that she is still going to Chicago in the morning. That night, Hedy and the Smiths drop by a crowded night spot, where Morgan is attempting to romance Lola. After the Smiths trick their way into sitting at Morgan's table, Morgan meets the beautiful Tanya, a visiting Russian pilot whom he has been assigned to entertain. Tanya soon pairs up with Harry, while Lola, eager to punish Morgan, goes off with Tommy. Hedy and Morgan continue to bicker with each other, but when Morgan later crashes his plane while conducting a nighttime test, Hedy stitches his head wounds. Morgan is pleasantly surprised to learn that Hedy is a doctor and tries to make a date with her, but she refuses, saying that she is leaving in the morning. The next day, however, Hedy announces to her father that she is staying long enough to remove Morgan's sutures. Morgan and Tommy, who is romancing Lola, are happy for the delay, but as soon as Hedy takes out Morgan's stitches, she, Harry and Dick head for Chicago. Desperate to keep Hedy in town, Morgan chases after her in his car, and while claiming to need medical attention, recites the hippocratic oath. The distracted Morgan crashes and, although he is not seriously injured, he and Doc decide to use the accident to prevent Hedy from leaving. The next day, on her way out of town, Hedy, who is now traveling only with Dick, as Harry has stayed behind with Tanya, drops by to see Morgan at home. George and Mary Hastings, at whose house Morgan is living, tell Hedy that Morgan has refused to leave his room and spent the night in his closet. After Hedy finds Morgan hiding under his bed, he admits that he is now too scared to go outside. The unsuspecting Hedy confers with Doc about Morgan's condition, which Doc diagnoses as "panaphobia," or the fear of everything, and Doc encourages Hedy to spend as much time with him as possible. Blind to her own feelings about Morgan, the coldly professional Hedy begins to psychoanalyze him. Then when Doc suggests that Morgan might benefit from some romance, she throws a party for him and tries to fix him up with a homely girl. The next day, a frustrated Morgan lies to Hedy that he stayed out all night with Lola. Now jealous, Hedy is relieved to hear that Lola has become engaged to Tommy and realizes that she is in love with Morgan. When she confides in Doc her fear that Morgan will stop loving her once she has "cured" him, Doc finally reveals the ruse. Furious, Hedy interrupts a board meeting at the airplane company to tell the members that Morgan, their top pilot, is almost cured of his mental illness. She then subjects Morgan to a battery of rough "treatments," including an ice bath. After finally admitting that she is on to him, Hedy once again prepares to leave for Chicago, but as she is walking away, she slips on an ice cube and is knocked unconscious. As soon as she revives, Morgan professes his love, and the couple, united at last, kiss.