The Lonely Hearts Romance Comics Podcast – Episode 3 – Calamity Jane


In our third episode, we use an old western romance comic to discuss the introduction of genre into romance and vice-versa. That story: 1950’s Calamity Jane from Cowgirl Romances #1, which is naturally presented in glorious Romance Comics Theatre fashion. Sorry about the accents, but I did manage to get two genuine Texans in the main role – my sister and brother-in-law on my Texas side!

Listen to Episode 3! (The usual filthy filthy language warnings apply.)

You can play the podcast using the player above or by right-clicking “download”, choosing “Save Target/Link As”, and selecting a location on your computer to save the file (77MB).

Or subscribe to the Lonely Hearts Podcast on iTunes!

The play’s script so you can follow along:theatre3-calamityjane

Further credits :
“Comic Book Romance” (Theme for Lonely Hearts Podcast) by Johnny and the Jokers.

“Here’s to the Losers” (End theme for Lonely Hearts Podcast) by James (Vic Fontaine) Darren.

Relevant teaser clip from “Calamity Jane” trailer (1953) by David Butler, starring Doris Day and Howard Keel.

Additional audio:

Romance Comics Theatre Music: “Old Kentucky Home” by Edwina Travis-Chin, and “Dirty Work At The Crossroads” by Sam Fonteyn

Theatre credits over: “Cosa dice un Saloon ad un altro Saloon” by Welion Mocens

“Secret Love” by Doris Day from Calamity Jane (1953)

Bonus clips from: “Short Circuit” by John Badham, starring Ally Sheedy; “Wonder Woman Theme” by Charles Fox

Thanks for leaving a comment, Lonely Hearts!

8 thoughts on “The Lonely Hearts Romance Comics Podcast – Episode 3 – Calamity Jane

  1. Thanks so much for pointing out that ‘finally men are talking about the Superman/Wonder Woman romance’ is a bit of a headscratcher. I’ve discussed it many times on my blog, and had plenty of friendly exchanges with Zoraida and Veronica Cristina on the subject on Twitter and elsewhere. It’s also been a talking point at Anj’s Supergirl Comic Box Commentary and in other places.

    Anyway, nice job on bringing in some of the women Super-Bloggers.

    Great episode all round, I loved the Calamity Jane story. It must be unusual to have a romance story in which the heroine doesn’t get so much as a smooch.


  2. That’s a good point. Maybe she was meant to be unlucky in love, or they were going to make her grow, understand what she really wanted and then only share a kiss with the right man. If they ever reprint issues 2 and 3, we’ll have a better idea.


  3. Interesting story. I really like this Tony. She seems like someone I would pine for from a distance thinking someone as vibrant as her could never fall for a geek like me. (Huh, that shows a lot of my own self-loathing!)

    Anyways, I enjoyed the romance/genre discussion as well. Some thoughts.

    The Audition, dir Takashi Miike.
    This is a movie from Japan which is a completely terrifying movie. The movie starts as almost an arthouse love story, an older man who is a widow decides to start dating again. He is a movie producer and meets a young actress during an audition. Their courtship is sweet and awkward. The first hour is almost ponderous. Then a scene happens which changes to feel of the movie entirely and you descend into horror from then on. But Miike follows up that scene with more of the romancy stuff. Except now we, as the audience, know it isn’t all sweet and rosy. It makes the suspense almost sickening as you wait for the horror to unfold. Brutal, graphic, shocking ending.

    Deadly Friend, dir Wes Craven.
    Much much goofier than Audition. High school nerd resurrects the girl he loves as a sort of android/cyborg. The programming goes wonky and she goes on a killing spree including a terrific scene where she explodes Anne Ramsay’s head by throwing a basketball at it. Still, nerdy love gets a showcase here.

    Solaris, either dir Tarkovsky or Soderbergh
    A space explorer is on a station over a planet called Solaris. The planet is either sentient or empathic or something else. The explorer is confronted with a simulacrum of his dead wife. He then has to sift through his memories of their relationship. The ups and down, their courting and marriage, their romance, and the way their relationship ended … that relationship is remembered in the context of a stark, cold, sparse station. Both movies have different ways to show how alone the explorer is, playing it off the weight of that romance. I highly recommend them.


  4. Will answer your comments in full in the listener mailbag section of episode 4, but I endorse your recommendation of Audition fully. It’s an amazing, ambiguous film, and yes, romance before horror, for sure.


  5. I would like to say that *I* can ride a horse guys… Come one!! Also yes Andreanne rides horses and yes she climbs tree on a regular basis Bass. That’s where she reads three books a day!

    For the Romance/Horror discussion, it’s not a movie (actually just found out that one is on its way for 2016 and HOLY WHAT A CAST!) nor a comic but I think we have to consider Pride and Prejudice and Zombies as being more of a romance novel with horror parts than the opposite. Quite the enjoyable one as a matter of fact :-p

    Congrats for the “I have a snake in my boots” moment Marty! The whole pain-panel sequence is solid gold! Really enjoyed everything about this podcast. Good job guys as always 🙂


  6. Hey guys, great work so far. Ugh, the Superman/Wonder Woman thing. It’s just not good for either them. In the case of Superman it severs that tie to humanity that the relationship with Lois grants him (which you guys kind of touched on in a way.) However since I’m a bigger Wonder Woman fan than a Superman fan I HATE this pairing because he is literally the only man in the DC Universe who would be the strength in the couple over her. And that’s just wrong. It goes against the fundamental core of the character. And if this is writers indulging in juvenile pandering why not at least have the guts to pair her off with Power Girl?

    Anyways, in regards to your question of genre films that are romances first, the film that immediately leapt to my mind was Darren Aronofsky’s “The Fountain.” It’s one of my favorite romance stories and it is also a bit of a blowing sci-fi on top of that.

    This comic was fun and cheesy, and as noted with a surprisingly strong and even progressive heroine. Normally the flightiness would bother me, but for a 16 year old it’s actually much more appropriate than the “teen love is eternal” angle of something like Disney’s “The Little Mermaid.”

    Keep up the great work on this funky little podcast.


    1. “Funky” is probably a good epithet for it, thanks Nathaniel.

      The Fountain is certainly a love story first, yes! It also features Montreal as the “future”, which is funny to me for personal reasons.


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