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Elmer, the Rainmaker Recap

The circus arrives in the middle of a draught, and Corky and Elmer go up in Elmer's balloon to try and spot water. Tim admits to Joey that they have no idea if they're going into drought country. He has a worker pull down the hot-air balloon, and Corky tells Tim that everything is dried up as far as they could see. Pete pulls up and says that the local town has a reservoir but they're not parting with the water. The sheriff, Hicks, wouldn't even let Pete water his horses.

Tim and Joey take the tanker wagon to the reservoir and Tim offers to pay whatever they ask. Hicks says that they can't spare any water, and points out that the ranchers have already lost half their livestock because of the drought. If the townspeople learned that he was giving water to outsiders, they'd panic. Hicks tells them that there might be some water north at Mineral City, and offers them a couple of barrels.

Back at the circus, Tim puts Joey in charge of rationing while he rides to Mineral City. If there's no water there, he'll keep riding until he finds some. Once he leaves, Elmer and Corky come over to get some water. Corky starts to give his water to Bimbo, but Elmer stops him and warns that the water isn't enough to make any difference to the elephant. Elmer finally realizes the solution to the problem and tells Corky that they have work to do.

Later, Pete joins Corky and Elmer. Elmer explains that he's whittling a diving rod that is guaranteed to find water, They convince Pete to come with them and dig, and they start searching for water. Elmer finally locates a spot and Pete can hear the water gurgling under the dirt. Hours later, Pete is still digging and Elmer says that he has to dig another ten feet. He finds a pump handle

That night back at the mess tent, Elmer insists that they gave up too easily. Pete doesn't want to hear it, and Elmer realizes that it's humid. He finally works out a way to built a "humidity condenser" by seeding a cloud with chemicals and draw out rain, and tells them to wear their rubbers for the rain that's coming in the morning.

Later, Corky prays to God for rain and promises not to complain if he gives them some. Later, Elmer reaches in through the window and wakes Corky up just before dawn. Being careful not to wake Joey, Elmer takes Corky to his condenser. He went into town and got chemicals from the druggist, and insists that it has to work. They get into the balloon and Elmer has Corky cast off the line. Pete runs up and tries to stop them, but Elmer dumps a bag of sand ballast on him.

Once the balloon is in the clouds, Elmer starts seeding the chemicals. Tim returns to camp and tells Pete to load up because Mineral City can spare them enough water to keep them going. Pete tells him about Elmer's plan, and Tim goes after the balloon as it drifts away.

Hicks and his deputy Jeff are handing out water from the reservoir when the balloon drifts overhead and the chemicals land in the water. Jeff figures that they poisoned the water and prepares to shoot the balloon, and it comes down on its own before he can fire. Hicks rides over just as Tim arrives and explains about Elmer polluting the reservoir. The sheriff isn't impressed with Elmer's claim, and warns that the local ranchers won't be as understanding as he is. He advises them to get the circus out of the area as soon as possible, and Tim says that they'll ship back some water when they get to Mineral City.

The circus prepares to move out, and Pete rides up to warn that the townspeople are heading their way. Meanwhile, Bimbo starts howling. Elmer comes over and apologizes to Corky, and realizes that the wind isn't coming from the reservoir. Bimbo smells water and Elmer tells Corky to untie the elephant so he can lead them to the water. Corky reluctantly does so and as he walks off, Tim tells Joey to get Bimbo back.

The townspeople ride up, while Joey, Elmer, and Corky follow Bimbo. Tim sends Pete to get them and tells him to abandon Bimbo if necessary. Meanwhile, Bimbo stops at a crevasse in the rocks. Elmer goes on ahead into the brush and finds a cave, and goes in first. After a moment he comes out soaked and says that there's an underwater stream inside.

The ranchers arrive and demand that Tim pay them for all of their livestock. Corky and Elmer run back and announce that they've found water, and Joey tells the townspeople to come with them. Once they see the spring, they take all of the water they need. Corky gives Bimbo his water, and Pete tells Tim that the townspeople are so happy with them that they're all coming to the show. Tim tells Elmer not to do any more of his crazy stunts, and Elmer wonders why his formula didn't work. As Pete insists that no one can make it rain, it starts raining.

Written by Gadfly on Jul 6, 2017

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