19 June 1897-4 May 1975

OTD in 1955…

The comedy world lost one of the funniest men to ever grace the screen. He didn’t have to say a single word…once he walked into the shot, you felt like laughing, even if he didn’t do anything.

He was also one of the first “sploitation” actors–if you’ve heard the term “Fake Shemp,” this is what they mean. There were four films created with the Fake Shemp (Joe Palma), and since Jules White could direct and produce a film in a matter of HOURS with footage of Shemp from an old short, throw in some new footage of Moe and Larry, and voila! You’ve got a new film to fool theatre managers made for the fraction of the price of a new one! It’s win-win…until Moe and Larry (and even Harry Cohn) realized they couldn’t run the Shempsploitation Express forever…so along came EVERYONE’S favorite Stooge replacement, Joe Besser!

(I actually liked Besser–he was such a totally different comedian that you just went “WHAT?!” when you saw him with the rough and tumble Moe and Larry. No, I’m not giving up my Stooge card–I’ve had it since 1975!)

March Movie Madness & Mayhem (Day 18!)–Queen of Outer Space (1958)

via Queen of Outer Space – 1958 – 80 Minutes

Ah, Queen of Outer Space! Not only does it have a degree of Stoogeration (director Edward Bernds), it also has the late, great Zsa Zsa Gabor as said Queen! I’ve seen this movie many moons ago (about the same time as that other great Gabor film Picture Mommy Dead). This one involves the usual “Women Iz Useless Unless Men Around” trope that seemed to be so popular back in the day. Of course, you wonder how there are women of varying ages (but not TOO old, of course!)

Anyhoo, take a look around the B-Movie Graveyard…it’s quite a site!