2B - Thursday, October 2, 2008
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
'THREE LITTLE PIGSKINS' (1934), 'BEER
BARREL POLECATS' (1946) AND 'PUNCH
The Daily Arts guide to
upcoming events in Ann Arbor
and the surrounding area.
Haiti: Photography by Jane
At thelane Hall Exhibit Space
At Border's (612 Liberty)
Platanos and Collard Greens
In the Modern Languages Building
Sidewalk Etches and Other
Odd Anecdotes: An Evening
of Dance, Music, Poetry and
At the Duderstadt in the Video and
The Arts of Iraq Roundtable:
Artists in Diaspora
At the Performance Network Stage
(120 E. Huron)
10th Annual Jam Contest
At Downtown Home & Garden
(210 S. Ashley)
Heather Raffo's 9 Parts of
At the Performance Network Stage
(120 E. H uron)
$30/ $20 with student ID
Please send all press releases
and event information to
Sarah Palin challenges Joe Biden to Alas-
kan Chili Cook-Off in place of debate.
Congress proposes $20 million bailout
plan for Michael Jackson.
Following Paul Newman, Hurley from
"Lost" sells "Hurley's Own" beef jerky.
Success of new film "Choke" prompts
rash of fake restaurant chokings.
ScarJo's marriage lasts longer than next
"So, did you see the Gargoyle today?"
becomes popular pick-up line on
Britney Spears's sex tape actually hot.
The original kings
By BLAKE GOBLE
Daily Film Editor
While watching the shit-show that
was the Michigan versus Notre Dame
game something familiar happened.
Chuck Weiss tore some ligament. Players
repeatedly fumbled. And the rain made
player coordination look similar to that
of a screwball comedy. Amidst the slip-
ping, sliding, tripping and stumbling that
happened in South Bend, a revelation
occurred that made the game a bit easier
It wasjust like the Three Stooges short,
"Three Little Pigskins."'
It's the one where Curly hides a football
in his jersey that sports a question mark
for a number. Larry brags about studying
Pig Latin, not dissimilar to the popular-
ity of modern kinesiology. And Moe just
throws the ball away, afraid to get tack-
led by the opposing team. Sounds vaguely
familiar, doesn't it?
The Three Stooges have been viewed
in some capacity by almost everyone.
They're nothing new, and if you don't like
them now, you probably never wilL But
the appeal of the Stooges is how well their
acthas aged.Youhave a"nyuk-nyuk" here
and a "wiseguy" remark there. Slapping
sounds are mixed with surprisingly vio-
lent pratfalls. Even if you don't find their
antics amusing in the slightest, you prob-
ably at least know who these guys are.
They're still relevant, and they can still
entertain. "Three Little Pigskins" was
a small testament to that. Covering the
entire Stooges catalogue requires encyclo-
pedic knowledge, and lord knows there's
enough written on these goofs. Their
handful of two-reel short films helped
create a popular vernacular for slapstick
and screwball comedy. So think of this
like a greatest hits briefing.
Three great Stooges films include the
aforementioned "Pigskins," "Beer Barrel
Polecats" and "Punch Drunks." All are
available on Hulu and all can be cathartic
in stressful times.
"Pigskins" is about the Stooges run-
ning from mobsters, only to hide out on
a college football team and be mistaken
for heroes. Some classic bits include the
seltzer-water-shots and various goofy
football theatrics. At 18 minutes, their
promise of gags beats plot any day.
In "Beer Barrel Polecats" we see the,
uh, real dangers of alcohol. Making your
own liquor is about the dumbest, if not
funniest, thing you can do. Spilling a pip-
ing hot batch of alcohol on a friend is in
poor form, even if it is hysterical. And
never try to sweet talk the police when
alcohol is present. It's moronic now, and
it was in 1946. But at least here it's done
in good spirit. It's almost like a pre-MIP
With "Punch Drunks" we get classic
Stoogery, still worthy of study and notori-
ety because of its simple antics. When sap
waiter Curly hears "Pop Goes the Weasel"
played near him, everything goesblank as
he turns into a killing machine. Larry and
Yes, they're still
Moe, being the good Samaritans that they
are, push Curly into the professional box-
Curly screams and whoops and slaps
his face in glee as he sports spandex
with a Stradivarius across his tummy -
clearly the mark of a psycho fighter. But
that's what makes the Stooges so funny.
By making everyday events like sports
and school, or going to work or court,
preposterous, the Stooges became easily
identifiable to any person who watched
Without these guys, we'd likely have no
"Something About Mary" or "Blazing
Saddles." The Three Stooges left behind
a true wealth of comedic film that seems
to have been fading in remembrance in
recent years. So do yourself a favor and
re-introduce yourself with these three
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