Saturday, June 29, 2019

Episode 16: (After) The End of the Marx Brothers

The picaresque career of the Marx Brothers had many beginnings and many endings. Just as the three decades beginning in 1905 were filled with various "this is our big break!" breakthroughs, there was a repetitive, meandering quality to their final efforts as a team. Their "farewell picture," The Big Store (1941), was followed not just by two more Marx Brothers movies, but by a ragtag series of film and television projects which occasionally succeeded in putting more than one Marx Brother in the same place at the same time.

In this sixteenth episode of the Marx Brothers Council Podcast, we examine the Brothers' joint efforts following the release of what was technically the last Marx Brothers movie.

Official description: "Though the Marx Brothers stopped performing together after 1949’s Love Happy, that didn’t stop the constant stories, rumors, and plans of future projects. This month we take a look at the Marxes' 1950s post-career, which included a few moments when they did reunite. Bob comes up with a unique (and probably stupid) theory about The Incredible Jewel Robbery, while Matthew admits to a Marx appearance that he can’t be bothered to watch. Later, we are joined by Marx and Re-Marx author Andrew T. Smith for a closer look at the aborted Deputy Seraph project."

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Footnotes for this episode:


  1. Thank you for another hit, gentlemen.
    RE" Matthew's comment toward the end about how Harpo's solo work on TV building on the premise that he CAN'T talk. Was it with Milton Berle or Spike Jones where he does his impression on windshield wipers. He whispers into the host's ear what he's going to do. Hardly presenting as one who CAN'T but more as one who WON'T.

  2. Good point...but I think unless it served the purpose of a specific moment (like here), he was more often than not presented as an actual mute after Paramount. In reality, I don't think it was a big deal to him to be consistent.

  3. Do we know if, on the Tonight Show, Chico used his Italian accent? I would assume that Harpo did not speak. And when you talk about historical film being lost, remember that NASA erased (accidentally they say) their original film of Neil Armstrong stepping off the lunar platform.


Episode 50: The Gods Look Down and Laugh (Our Animal Crackers Deep Dive featuring Heidi Gassel)

Not every Marx Brothers fan would name  Animal Crackers  when asked which film is their favorite, but as it happens, all three of your hosts...