The Duck Is Relaxed (1990)

Double D/Twin Towers' next project was the whodunitanwhatdideydo The Duck Is Relaxed (1990). Billed as the first Dick and Dora mystery, and by far the most professional of the DD/TT productions, it was filmed in a whirlwind weekend on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. The first DD/TT production to feature off-line editing, it is rumored to also be the first in which scenes were actually shot out of sequence and assembled later in the edit. Unfortunately, Darnell and DeRux's unfamiliarity with this technique resulted in several fantastic continuity problems, including a really muddy night-for-day beach sequence.

Cram DeRux stars (naturally) as down-on-his-luck-gumshoe Dick "Duck" Duckweed. In a recurring sight gag, Dora, the ingenue, utters his nickname, Duck, and DeRux jerks his head down and skitters like a crab on a string of firecrackers. The plot is standard whodunit fare: Dora hires Duck, who has been reduced to living out of his car, to find the author of a threatening note sent to Dora's pet lobster, Little Claw. The pair clumsily pursue clues to Bob's Busy Beach Barnacle Bunker, where they encounter a number of odd characters, including kitchen scullions Zeno ("L'Imigra, L'Imigra!") and Achmed ("I believe I'll have an Orangina"), and barfly/vamp Kit E. Kitty.

The film's title comes from the fumblethumbed detective's lame attempt at concocting a discreet password: "Dora, remember, I'll just say, 'The duck is relaxed.' Got it? 'The duck is relaxed.' Remember that." There are many theories as to the true origin and meaning of the phrase, but none that may be mentioned in a family publication.


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