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Mar 142014
 

There have been many movie versions of Snow White over the years. Snow White and the Three Stooges features Moe (Moe Howard), Larry (Larry Fine), and Curly Joe (Joe DeRita) as a group of performers who are house sitting for the seven dwarves.

The bigger focus, of course, is on Snow White (Carol Heiss). She is very kind and sweet to everyone she meets, which makes her a wonderful princess who will one day rule the happy Kingdom of Fortunia.

The happiness was not to last after Snow White’s father King Augustus (Edgar Barrier) dies and her stepmother the Wicked Queen (Patricia Medina) imprisoned her the first chance she got. Oddly, the Wicked Queen’s name is not revealed in this version.

Even though the Stooges are featured in the intro, they don’t appear until much later and as an added twist the Prince Charming in this story is actually a performer named Quatro (Edson Stroll). Quatro lost his memory 14 years earlier and the Stooges took him in. Quatro also uses a puppet called Quinto. It’s interesting to know that Mel Blanc voiced the role. I though he sounded familiar.

Soon Quatro finds out that he is Prince Charming, who was once betrothed to Snow White after the Wicked Queen’s soldiers seek him out and arrest him. What a way to discover the truth. Now it’s up to Snow White and the Stooges to rescue Quatro, but the Wicked Queen is after them too.

Afterwards, the story goes in a whole new direction. With the prince presumed dead, Snow White and the Stooges escape and head far away… in the snowy mountains?

Another new item featured in this fairytale is the sword of power, which was created by Count Oga (Guy Rolfe) the Wicked Queen’s magician. The sword grants wishes to whoever holds it. Power like that is unpredictable, especially if say one of the Stooges had it.

Meanwhile in Fortunia, it’s revealed that the prince didn’t die and he leads a rebellion against the Wicked Queen. The battle was exciting, but where did Prince Charming learn to sword fight? He certainly didn’t learn it from the Stooges.

This movie is an oldie, but a goodie. There are also musical numbers that take place on the ice, which would explain why the role of Snow White was played by an Olympic gold medallist figure skater. However, they tend to run long at times and leave me wondering when the Stooges will return to do their funny shticks.

Mar 112014
 

We all remember the 3 stooges, Moe (Moe Howard), Larry (Larry Fine), and Curly (Curly Howard) as a trio of slapstick buffoons that bumble every job they’re given. The stooges had many short films over the years, but right now I’d like to focus on the animated series The New Three Stooges (1965-1966).

Now this takes place during the Curly Joe era. For those of you unfamiliar, after Curly passed away in the early 50s, there were a couple of fill-ins for the third stooge. One of them was Curly Joe (Joe DeRita). I admit that he wasn’t as hilarious as Curly, but still funny nonetheless.

This series of cartoon shorts features Moe, Larry, and Curly Joe traveling the world while bumbling their various jobs and it usually ends with the three of them running for the hills. The only major difference is that there isn’t as much face slapping and poking at each other. I guess the purpose was to keep it “child-friendly”.

There were also live action segments that went with the cartoons, which I also found enjoyable. However, the show tended to use the same segments with different cartoons. It was confusing sometimes, especially if the intention was for the cartoons and live action segments to coincide as a full episode.

This wasn’t the only time The Three Stooges became an animated series though. There was another version called The Robonic Stooges (1977-1978). This Hanna-Barbera series featured the stooges as bumbling robot heroes with various contraptions to fight evil. Many of the contraptions were inside the big letters on their chests, which I found fascinating. However, unlike the 60s series, the stooges did not voice their own characters. It was confusing at times because Curly returns and it left the impression that Curly was still alive in the 70s, since it sounded a lot like him.

The same voice actor (Frank Welker) also voiced Jabberjaw, whose persona was very similar to Curly.

The stooges also made appearances on The New Scooby-Doo Movies, but didn’t provide their own voices on this show either, unlike other celebrity guest stars that have done so.

The New Three Stooges is truly a classic cartoon series. Even though this was before my time, I still think the stooges were great to watch growing up. They always left me laughing.