Here’s ‘Gents In A Jam’ from 1952, written and directed by Edward Bernds. The best of the Shemp shorts were for the most part Bernds-helmed–his scripts were tighter and the jokes and sight gags better planned and delivered than the increasingly mechanical Jules White films of the period. I was talking with my friend, journalist/historian Marc Myers, about ones preference re: Shemp V. Curly. I said that I thought it all had to do with your age–Curly appeals to the uncontrollable manic energy of our childhoods whereas Shemp speaks to the befuddled, accident-prone and fearful middle-aged being that we seem to become. Marc put it more succinctly: ‘Curly is swing, Shemp is bop.’
I had the pleasure and honor of knowing Ed Bernds–if you’d like to hear an episode of my podcast devoted to the Stooges and to my friendship with Ed click here and scroll down.