Mickey Mouse Club Serials: Further Adventures of Spin and Marty
When The Adventures of Spin and Marty proved to be a hit, writer Jackson Gillis reportedly wanted to do a film treatment for it. Walt Disney had always resisted doing sequels in the past, saying that there was no point in competing with yourself. With some Spin and Marty actors and Mouseketeers featuring in Westward Ho, the Wagons (1956), already in production, he may have decided to see how that movie fared before committing to a second feature film.
Producer Bill Walsh assigned Lillie Hayward to write the teleplay, with William Beaudine Sr again directing. Tim Considine and David Stollery would reprise their roles as Spin and Marty, this time sharing lead billing with Walt's favorite Mouseketeer, Annette Funicello. A new favorite of Walt's, youngster Kevin Corcoran, also joined the cast, largely eclipsing the five supporting child actors who returned from the original series.
Note: The images here are from just a few episodes of the series; many come courtesy of Kurt Spitzner.
New Triple R camper Moochie is introduced to the returning gang by Freddy. Marty arrives at camp wearing a polo outfit and acting snobby again. It's a put on, though, and he's soon laughing and greeting his pals Spin, Joe, Ambitious, Al, and Speckle. At suppertime Mr. Logan announces that the big competition this year will be a swim meet against North Fork, and that there will be a dance with the girls from the new Circle H camp across the lake. The boys are all enthusiastic, except for Spin, who doesn't know how to dance. A chance encounter while riding leads Marty to invite Annette and the Circle H girls to watch a movie of last year's rodeo with North Fork. The competition for Annette's attention puts a strain on Spin and Marty's friendship, culminating in a near fight at a joint wienie roast with the girls. Spin races off alone on Sailor, getting himself knocked unconscious. Marty, Col Logan, and Bill Burnett rescue him, but Moochie, told to fetch an older boy to rub down Skyrocket, forgets to do it, and the horse catches a chill. Exit Moochie, stage left, until Skyrocket recovers and the tearful lad is brought back.
At the long-awaited dance, it's Marty who misses out, he and Perkins having been stung badly by bees. Spin, taught how to bop by Ollie the Wrangler, makes a big hit with Annette. The strain between the two boys finally breaks out into a fight the night before the swim meet. North Fork has a new camper named Terry Moore, who proves to be a major threat to the Triple R. The Circle H girls cheer on the Triple R boys, while Spin and Marty glare at each other. The meet is tied up at the last race, when Spin is conked on the head by Moochie's toy motorboat. Marty saves his friend from drowning, but the swim meet is lost. Ignoring Annette's tender ministrations, Spin races off to join his retreating pal Marty. At the campfire that night they learn that Marty's Grandmother will buy a ranch, at which they can both work. The boys laugh as they recount their last sight of Annette, paddling away in a canoe with the North Fork swim champion.
|Episode||       ||Orig Air Date||       || |
| ||       || ||       || |
|1.   An Introduction||       ||Nov 15, 1956||       || |
|2.   Back to Triple R||       ||Nov 16, 1956||       || |
|3.   Orders From Grandmother||       ||Nov 19, 1956||       || |
|4.   The First Campfire||       ||Nov 20, 1956||       || |
|5.   The Meeting||       ||Nov 21, 1956||       || |
|6.   The Wild Stallion||       ||Nov 22, 1956||       || |
|7.   Homemade Movies||       ||Nov 23, 1956||       || |
|8.   A Social Evening||       ||Nov 26, 1956||       || |
|9.   Summer Daze||       ||Nov 27, 1956||       || |
|10. The Rescue||       ||Nov 28, 1956||       || |
|11. Perkins Strikes Back||       ||Nov 29, 1956||       || |
|12. A Dancing Lesson||       ||Nov 30, 1956||       || |
|13. The Wienie Roast||       ||Dec   3, 1956||       || |
|14. Sailor to the Rescue||       ||Dec   4, 1956||       || |
|15. Skyrocket in Trouble||       ||Dec   5, 1956||       || |
|16. The Long Night||       ||Dec   6, 1956||       || |
|17. The Runaway||       ||Dec   7, 1956||       || |
|18. Busy Little Bees||       ||Dec 10, 1956||       || |
|19. The Dance||       ||Dec 11, 1956||       || |
|20. Trouble Ahead||       ||Dec 12, 1956||       || |
|21. At It Again||       ||Dec 13, 1956||       || |
|22. The Swimming Meet||       ||Dec 14, 1956||       || |
|23. The Last Campfire||       ||Dec 17, 1956||       || |
Production on this story began July 30, 1956, and wrapped up on September 21, 1956. Once again, the Golden Oak and Walker ranches were used for filming, with additional scenes done at Agua Dulce Lake, northeast of Santa Clarita. Tim Considine and David Stollery were given a $50 raise over their salary for the first serial, to $450 per week, nearly double what Annette and the other Mouseketeers were then making.
Though interesting, this sequel didn't live up to the original serial. A glance at the cast listing below will provide one possible reason: there are more credited adult actors than kids, a reversal from the first series. Where the original serial let the interactions between the boys dominate the scenes, in this sequel scenes with adults predominated. As this was a story crafted for the young teenage level, the adult actors had to deliver juvenile-appropriate dialogue in a muted manner, coming off as very weak tea indeed.
The character of Moochie was just the sort of extroverted persona director Bill Beaudine favored. Hayward gets the credit for this character, having already devised the "Moochie gets in mischief, Moochie runs away, Moochie tearfully confesses" bit in the Adventure in Dairyland serial. This little routine was thrown into the action whenever Lillie's muse waned. Walt loved it, Bill Walsh liked it because Walt did, and Beaudine could shoot it in his sleep.
Having worked with her on Adventure in Dairyland, director Beaudine was neither impressed with Annette's acting abilities, nor in awe of her position as Walt's favorite. Despite her billing status in this serial, she had far fewer camera shots and close-ups than Moochie. This actually worked to Annette's advantage, for with her, less was more. Hayward's teleplay had Annette registering annoyance, disdain, and later, astonishment at Spin's abandonment of her, making her character seem more lively and natural than would be allowed in later serials.
Though all the returning child actors had grown since the previous summer, none had so drastically altered as David Stollery. From a cute tow-headed youngster he had become a tall, slightly gawky teenager. The change in his physical appearance may have affected his confidence, for at times he seems hesitant and unsure where the action doesn't call for it.
David Stollery wasn't the only actor in this serial to display some awkwardness in delivering lines. Bill Beaudine's illness was causing uneasiness even among the adult performers. It's hard to concentrate when the guy who should be leading you is grimacing in pain two feet away. Production was suspended on Sept 4, 1956 when Beaudine was hospitalized for peritonitis, and resumed a few days later with dialogue coach Fred Hartsook taking the helm. To expedite finishing the serial, Bill Walsh and Hartsook decided to discard six pages of the shooting script.
For Brand Stirling (Al) and Roger Broadus (Freddie) this would be their third and final project with Disney and director Bill Beaudine. However, Disney newcomer Melinda Plowman (Peggy) would rejoin Beaudine and others of his MMC serial alumni (Harry Carey Jr, Roy Barcroft, Lennie Geer, and Chuck Courtney) in the campy horror-western Billy the Kid vs. Dracula (1966). Though this was her first job at Disney, Melinda already had an impressive array of acting credits, as did the only other credited Lakeview girl, Bonnie Kay Eddy. Rose Constance Gilchrist, who played Marty's grandmother, was a Brooklyn-born stage, film, and television actress who would appear in three Disney movies during the sixties. Joyce Holden played a variety of roles in "B" flicks during the fifties, but rarely a "good girl" part like counselor Helen Adams in this serial.
|Tim Considine||       ||"Spin" Evans|
|David Stollery||       ||Martin "Marty" Markham|
|Annette Funicello||       ||Annette|
|Roy Barcroft||       ||Col. Jim Logan|
|Harry Carey||       ||Bill Burnett|
|Lennie Geer||       ||Ollie|
|J. Pat O'Malley||       ||Perkins|
|B. G. Norman||       ||Ambitious|
|Tim Hartnagel||       ||Clarence "Speckle" Smith|
|Roger Broaddus||       ||Freddie|
|Sammy Ogg||       ||Joe Simpson|
|Kevin Corcoran||       ||Montgomery "Moochie" O'Hara|
|Melinda Plowman||       ||Peggy|
|Brand Stirling||       ||Alfred "Al" MacGrath|
|Tim Ryan||       ||Jason|
|Robert J. Anderson||       ||Terry Moore|
|Charles Morton||       ||Freddie's father|
|Joyce Holden||       ||Helen Adams|
|Connie Gilchrist||       ||Mrs. Markham|
|Jesse B. Kirkpatrick||       ||Meet Official|
|Tom Hennesy||       ||North Fork Counselor|
|Sammee Tong||       ||George1|
|Robert B. Williams||       ||Dr. Bradley (Veterinarian)|
|George Eldredge||       ||Dr. Spaulding|
|Kelli Green||       ||Speckle's mother|
|James Horan||       ||Speckle's father|
|Bonnie Eddy||       ||Lakeview Girl|
1 - As with the first serial, the credits list him as "George" but the character is referred to throughout the serial as "Sam".
|Bill Walsh||       ||Producer|
|Louis Debney||       ||Associate Producer|
|Tommy Walker||       ||Associate Producer|
|John Grubbs||       ||Production Manager|
|Lillie Hayward||       ||Writer (teleplay)|
|William Beaudine Sr||       ||Director|
|Fred Hartsook||       ||Dialogue Director, Director|
|Jack Cunningham||       ||Assistant Director|
|Bill Finnegan||       ||Assistant Director|
|Tommy Foulkes||       ||Assistant Director|
|Russ Haverick||       ||Assistant Director|
|Gene Law||       ||Assistant Director|
|Eric Von Stroheim Jr||       ||Assistant Director|
|William Lava||       ||Theme Song, Music|
|Stan Jones||       ||Songs (uncredited)|
|Jimmie Dodd||       ||Song: Sweetshop Rock (uncredited)|
|Buddy Baker||       ||Music|
|Joseph S. Dubin||       ||Music|
|Franklyn Marks||       ||Music|
|Oliver Wallace||       ||Music|
|Bruce Bushman||       ||Art Director|
|Marvin Aubrey Davis||       ||Art Director|
|Gordon Avil, A.S.C.||       ||Director of Photography|
|Walter H. Castle, A.S.C.||       ||Director of Photography|
|Cotton Warburton, A.C.E.||       ||Film Editor|
|Joseph S. Dietrick||       ||Film Editor|
|Jim Love||       ||Film Editor|
|Robert O. Cook||       ||Sound|
|Bertram Granger||       ||Set Decorator|
|Emile Kuri||       ||Set Decorator|
|Chuck Keehne||       ||Costumes|
|Dave Newell||       ||Make-up|
|Ruth Sandifer||       ||Hair Stylist|
|Ben Harris||       ||Facilities Coordinator|
|Charles Dargan||       ||Production Coordinator|