I think the farce here should have been kept in the family/marital realm because those elements are the most illuminating and fun. Seen as a cautionary tale they work beautifully. All the military-related shenanigans and youth culture stuff (all from the book, I know) are generally thin and unfunny. The daughter's explanation of how she woke up and suddenly started "going ape" for boys is great though.
Robin Wood was right, this is one of the greatest american films of the '50s. And I understand why it's so underrated - it dares to be irreverent to way too many of the sacred institutions of the 50s: marriage, the army, and the new rock'n'roll generation. I can't remember another american classic film to end with a scene in which a chimpanzee proves to be cleverer than an army man. Great artist, mister Leo McCarey!