Tuesday, March 29, 2022

Episode 45: That En-cy-clo-pidia! (featuring Glenn Mitchell)


It speaks well of the Marx Brothers and their fans that there's such a massive shelf of outstanding books about the team and their work. At or near the top of that list is Glenn Mitchell's ambitious work of reference, The Marx Brothers Encyclopedia. This month, the man himself joins us for a discussion of his work.

Official description: "If you prefer your film history told alphabetically, then this is the episode for you!

"Glenn Mitchell, author of The Marx Brothers Encyclopedia, as well as similar volumes on Laurel & Hardy and Charlie Chaplin, joins us to not only tell the story of his fact-based books, but also grace us with some actual opinions. We learn his favorite Marx films, his least favorites, and the one he likes but can’t sit all the way through. 

"Glenn details how his books came to be, why they stopped, and what the next one would have been. He reveals rare discoveries made in the days of pre-internet research, as well as his take on the current state of Marx fandom…including an encounter with a guy who couldn’t comprehend the team’s name. 

"Glenn also touches on the uncut version of Horse Feathers, answers questions from the Facebook group, and gives Bob a surprising answer to his predictable manicurist inquiry."

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5 comments:

  1. Another fascinating episode. But throughout, I thought I was listening to George Martin dissecting the Marxes rather than the Beatles.

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    Replies
    1. You are not the first to make that observation.

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  2. Sorry I'm late to this podcast but it was well worth the wait. Glenn Mitchell must be an absolute treasure trove of information about early film comedy. Please have him on again in the not too distant future.
    One point he was unaware of is that Our Gang was actually shown on British TV some time in the late 1950s - before he was born. I distinctly remember laughing at Alfalfa and Buckwheat. I have no idea why it was never repeated.

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  3. Glad that Glenn picked Show Me a Rose as the closing song. While “not” profound, there is a melancholy to the number which I think profoundly suits Groucho. It’s funny, but somehow disappointed, too.

    Excellent episode!

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    Replies
    1. Well put! I always think of it as Groucho's "September Song."

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