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The villainous Ms. Shepard

Ms. Shepard (Debi Fares) is the mistress in the 1986 film, “Happy Hour”, which is also known as “Sour Grapes”. It is revealed at the very end of the film, that she was a villainous spy working to get vital information from her employer. She accomplished this by playing the ditsy blonde secretary.

Ms. Shepard is an employee and mistress of Jack Marshall (James Newell), the owner of Marshall Industries. Two scientists, Blakely Teegarden (Richard Gilliland) and Meredith Casey (Deborah Gates) in a lab experimenting with mice, discover some type of secret ingredient that makes beer very addictive to all. As a result, Marshall Industries, begins to sell this addictive beer and their sales go through the roof. The magical secret ingredient is stored in two different vials. One of these is stolen by Meredith, the disgruntled female scientist that found it. Meredith takes the vial to El Macho, who is Marshall’s beer competitor.

Ms. Shepard is first seen as the secretary to Mr. Teegarden, who has been promoted to VP of Research for Marshall Industries. She is wearing a cream color dress, and humming in a high pitch octave. Ms. Shepard is definitely the blonde bimbo type, with not much smarts going on upstairs. Blakely tells Mr. Marshall, that he isn’t sure of his new secretary, since she is illiterate. Mr. Marshall assures him that she has all sorts of talents. 

Ms. Shepard is then shown laying out at the pool, wearing a pink bikini. When Jack Marshall, her boss and lover, who is lounging nearby, has a guest. He tells her “Doll face, time for a swim”. With this, Ms. Shepard complains about the water being too cold, but complies and jumps in. She screams in the icy water, and Marshall responds “Hey cupcake, see how long you can hold your breath under water”. He does this so that he can have a private conversation. The underwater camera shows her comical face as she struggles to keep stay down. Eventually, she can no longer hold her breath, and has to come to the surface. Mr. Marshall, makes the comment, “Jesus Christ, with lungs like that you should be able to live down there. Try again”. In this meeting, he makes plans to hire Crummy Fred (Jamie Farr) and Misty Roberts (Tawny Kitaen) to steal the vial back from El Macho. In a counter-effort, El Macho has their spy, Mr. X (Rich Little), try to infiltrate Marshall.

Next we see Ms. Shepard pecking one finger at a time on a typewriter in Blakely’s office. She is wearing a blue dress while sitting at her desk. A few days later, she is wearing a red blouse with a short white skirt, and while sitting at the same desk, has a number of male office employees crowded around her listening to her belching. When Teegarden heads to lunch, Mr. X, the spy visits Ms. Shepard at her desk. He is disguised as being employed as a painter in the office, and Ms. Shepard is obviously attracted to him right away. Mr. X is able to get some information from her on Teegarden.

Ms. Shepard is then shown at the golf course. She is wearing a white low-cut blouse with grey miniskirt, a red thick belt and pink high heels. When Misty comments to her that “The Marshall guy isn’t too shabby is he”. Ms. Shepard gets very protective of her man, and responds “Hands off honey, he’s all mine”, and walks away. This confrontation lays the ground for a comical catlike encounter between the two. 

Debra Fares5
Later, when Ms. Shepard is ordered to go retrieve Mr. Marshall’s golf ball that has been hit into the water, we see her attempting to fish it out using a club. She is seen biting her bottom lip as she is concentrating while trying to locate the ball with the club. Misty takes this opportunity to get even with Ms. Shepard. Using her cart, Misty drives toward the bent over girl near the bank, and nudges her with a club. This ends up toppling Ms. Shepard into the pond. When she gets up, she is absolutely ticked off. She flings the club up on the bank, and continues to walk out of the water. We later see the still drenched young lady, sitting in the golf cart as Mr. Marshall drives to the next hole.

Next, Ms. Shepard is seen wearing a sparkly black dinner gown in a hotel room with Mr. X. She is giving him office secrets without knowing it. This is only a short encounter in the movie, and they sip wine together.

We next see Ms. Shepard sitting on the lap of Mr. Marshall in his office, wearing a white bikini and matching white high heels. When he hears that Teegarden was kidnapped he tosses her off his lap and onto the floor. She attempts to crawl toward her clothes on a nearby chair, but Marshall orders her out.

Later we see Ms. Shepard waking up from the sound of an alarm. She is in bed with Mr. X, who is wearing a black tux. She asks him where he is going, and he responds he has an appointment at midnight. She then asks, “wait, you never told me your name”. All he does is shrug his shoulders and says “didn’t I?”. With that he left the hotel room, and Ms. Shepard with a smile fell back to sleep.

Mr. X is then shown blowing up Marshall Industries lab which harbors the formula for the secret ingredient. When he is asked by Meredith, “So tell me, your instructions were to steal the bottle, not blow upthe building. Isn’t this a bit ostentatious?” Mr. X responded, “This my dear, was a special favor to a rather determined young lady”. Mr. X is referring to Ms. Shepard, who is immediately shown on the top of a roof looking through some binoculars. She turns to the camera and with a monologue says, “Don’t you just love happy endings? I do. Such a fitting climax to an esoteric fable of moral turpitude and conflicting social values. Yet of course, viewers with a limited intellectual capacity, may find our message somewhat oblique. It is to those I say, Sour Grapes. See ya”. 

Obviously, her whole character was a façade in order to garner her undercover access to Marshall Industries. Ms. Shepard played the dumb blonde bimbo to a T, and in the end, we find that she was a spy working to destroy the formula.



Henchwoman Ms

Henchwoman Ms.Shepard

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