On the first stage, there is a popcorn stand at the end of the walking stage, right before you get onto the bars which you have to cross to get to the sumo wrestler at the end.  The bars are tough for beginners, but there’s a leap of faith you can take to avoid the bars entirely.  Do not destroy the popcorn machine.  Kill all the enemies, and then hop on top of it.  Pull down until you are on the lower half of it (this is just to insure that the people on the bars can't hit you).  Now, walk forward until the machine takes control (there is a point at which, if you let go of the joystick, you continue walking forward.  This is what you are trying to do).  Note that you don't fall when you walk off the popcorn machine.  Do NOT jump at this point (a vertical jump is suicide.  Normal forward jumps might be safe, but there’s no guarantee).  When you finally float within range of the final level, you can get off by jumping straight up, or by moving down on the screen until you 'fall off' of the popcorn machine.



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