Title: Uncivil Warriors
Short Number: 8
Release Date: April 26, 1935
Running Time: 15:51
Uncivil Warriors Short Take
Set during the American Civil War, the short begins with a Northern General (James C. Morton) assigning Larry, Moe, and Curly (as Operators 12, 14 and 15, respectively) to sneak behind enemy lines and obtain secrets. Disguising themselves as southern officers and taking the names Lieutenant Duck (Larry), Captain Dodge (Moe) and Major Hyde (Curly), they insinuate themselves into the mansion of a southern officer, Colonel Butts (Bud Jamison).
During preparations for a dinner party at the mansion, Curly, more interested in the Colonel’s daughter, Judith Butts (Phyllis Crane), manages to mistake a quilted potholder for a cake, resulting in a feather-coughing scene. The short concludes with an episode in which Larry and Curly disguise themselves as, respectively, Captain Dodge’s father and wife. This leads to a controversial gag in which Major “Bloodhound” Filbert (Ted Lorch) inquires about Captain Dodge’s baby. Moe runs off and brings in a swaddled infant, which is revealed to be black, thus giving away the Stooges’ charade.
The three goofs run for their lives and hide in a “log” — which turns out to be a cannon — which is fired by the Confederates. The Union General wonders aloud where these three spies are. At that moment, the trio promptly lands on the General from the sky.
Demonstrating The Boys talent for delivery comedic dialogue, Writer Felix Adler wrote one of the best three patterns used in any short:
Moe: I wondah if this is the right place Lieutenant?
Larry: I reckon this is the place, Captain. What do you say, Major?
Curly: Well, if there’s no other place around the place, I reckon this must be the place, I reckon!
Uncivil Warriors Cast & Crew
|Directed by||Del Lord|
|Produced by||Jules White|
|Written by||Felix Adler|
|Music by||R.H. Bassett|
|Edited by||Charles Hochberg|
Uncivil Warriors Trivia
- Curly looks sassy disguised as a Southern Belle. The Boys dress in drag in 17 other shorts. Can you name them?
- It is the first short in which the Stooges mention “Good Time Charlie”. When the Stooges meet a guard, they often reference Charlie. The guard asks who Charlie is, and a Stooge replies that “everybody knows Charlie. He walks like this.” The Stooges then demonstrate a silly walk until they get clear of the guard, at which point they take off running. This is a recurring joke in Stooge shorts. In Uncivil Warriors, they actually meet a soldier named Charlie, who asks The Stooges, “Are you all looking for me?”
- The potholder gag would later appear in the Shemp-era short Three Hams on Rye during a live theatrical production.
- When Moe brings the black baby into the Colonel’s office he attempts to explain how the baby got his dark complexion (“We had him down the beach all summer…he got quite sunburned!”); this is sometimes deleted for U.S. television broadcasts.
- The introductory music over the titles is a medley of “Battle Hymn of the Republic” (most popular marching song of the Union Army) and “Dixie” (which had the same status in the Confederate Army).
- Uncivil Warriors was filmed on March 13–18, 1935.
- The original working title was Operators 12, 14 and 15. This was a reference to Curly’s solo feature film appearance in MGM’s Operator 13 in 1934 where he played a Civil War soldier.