Monday, January 10, 2011


The Live Ghost Laurel & Hardy

It's no secret that Laurel & Hardy are not only my favorite comedy team, but also my favorite comedians of all time. They are responsible for some of the funniest scenes ever committed to celluloid - including some prime entries in the horror-comedy genre.

This month, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) is paying tribute to Hal Roach Studios by airing many of the wonderful shorts and features the company produced. Starting Tuesday night, January 11th at 8PM and running through the evening of Wednesday, January 12 the focus will be on Stan Laurel & Oliver Hardy.

Included in the mirthful marathon will be some Stan & Ollie's short subject forays into horror-comedy from their "talkie" years, and if you've read this far, you'll no doubt want to tune in. Here's what's on tap (Mark Evanier has done us all a great service by posting a schedule - and his comments - on all the Laurel & Hardy films TCM is showing in this marathon- I encourage you to check it out by clicking here. Of course, to stay on-point for this blog I'm just listing the horror-comedies here):


9:30 PM: "The Live Ghost" (read my review of this classic short by clicking here).

11:00 OM: "Oliver the 8th" (aka "The Private Life of Oliver the 8th").

11:30 PM: "Dirty Work" (not really a horror-comedy per se but it does feature a benevolent mad scientist with a wacky scheme that comes to play in the film's finale).


9:30 AM: "The Laurel-Hardy Murder Case" - this is the short (soon to be reviewed here) that my dear departed friend and fellow "Son of the Desert," Allen Schottenfeld cited as his favorite Laurel & Hardy film, calling it "a wonderful spoof." The book edition of "Scared Silly" will be dedicated to Allen.

Special bonus: Wednesday at 11:00 AM also brings the Roach-produced "Topper Returns," the second entry in the "friendly ghost" series and the only one that truly has a "horror-comedy" element to it, with spooky going-ons in an "old dark house."

The Roach marathon runs throughout the month and there are more entries ahead including Charley Chase and Taxi Boys shorts - I'll blog on those as the air dates get closer. Until then... here's something to whet your appetite for Stan & Ollie - enjoy!


  1. I had the privilege of being able to watch "Oliver The Eighth", even though I don't have cable. While I love the Boys and their features/shorts, I think that "Oliver The Eighth" suffers from a lack of rhythm and, quite frankly, good supporting acting. Even just having James Finlyason would have been a great improvement!

  2. Thank you for your comment, Jake. It's been years since I've viewed "Oliver the 8th" but I don't recall it being one of my favorites. When I re-watch it for this project we'll see where I currently stand. :)