Thursday, March 07, 2013

The Three Stooges--Whoops I'm an Indian

You do not see or hear much about Whoops I’m an Indian these days.  One assumes the short has largely been swept under the rug due to its politically incorrect humor.  Here at The Eye, we are all about being political incorrect , so no problem there. 

The Stooges are caught running a gambling scam in the frontier town of Lobo City.   They are chased into the wilderness by the sheriff and cheated townsfolk, including a tough trapper named Pierre.    The trio evade capture, but must remain in the woods for safety.  They try to survive as fishermen, but prove terribly inept. 

Meanwhile, Pierre has discovered his wife has run off with an Indian chief.  He heads to town to drown his sorrows as the Stooges show up at his cabin in order to disguise themselves as stereotypical Hollywood Indians.  Curly winds up in drag as a squaw.  He plays a woman unusually often, no?

Their disguises fool the authorities, so they decide they can go safely back into town incognito.  They run into Pierre at the saloon.  He naturally has an ax to grind with Indians at the moment.  He threatens to kill Moe and Larry, but immediately falls for the homely squaw that is Curly.   Curly plays along until an escape plan can be devised, but he is eventually exposed.  The stooges run an hide for safety, but wind up inadvertently locking themselves up in jail. 

The fishing expedition is the funniest segment of the short.  A frustrated Curly decies to go into the water with a shotgun after he has no luck.  Moe keeps throwing back larger and larger fish because he is unsatisfied with their size in spite of their being worthy of mounting..  The stooge’s Indian routine takes up very little of the short and is not particularly funny.  Not because the impressions are racist, mind you.  It is more like the jokes are like some kids playing cowboys and Indians.   You can probably already guess the variations of ‘how,’ the war whoops, an goofy face paint jokes without ever seeing Whoops I’m an Indian.

Rating: *** (out of 5)

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