Saturday, June 4, 2022

Episode 47: Bert & Harry Go West (featuring Scott Alexander)

Official description: "Not a fan of the Marxes' Go West? Wish it had been done by the guys who wrote Duck Soup? Well, it almost was. Acclaimed screenwriter and friend of the Council Scott Alexander joins us to discuss the film’s early scripts, penned by the legendary team of Bert Kalmar and Harry Ruby.

"Groucho as a leering divorce lawyer, Chico as a phony fortune teller, Harpo acting like Harpo...who couldn’t love that? Apparently, MGM couldn’t, because they ended up changing everything, including the century the film takes place.

"Scott theorizes on why Kalmar, Ruby and their work were discarded…and portrays Margaret Dumont in a possible career-changing turn. Need we say more?"

Note for early birds: When a new episode is released, it might not appear at all of the locations below right away. If you visit your favorite podcast provider and the previous episode is still the most recent one you see there, be patient! And above all, don't worry.

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Footnote: Read Scott's original "term paper" covering his Go West investigations at the Academy's Margaret Herrick Library.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Well, this page was released a fortnight ago and there's officially No Comment. I guess that says it all!
    All seriousness aside, this 'cast is absolutely fascinating, and almost equally frustrating -- what if Harry and Bert's original script had been filmed, and their last MGM film (baseball, please) had been its equal? Then their only truly sub-par film as a true team would be At the Circus.
    I assume they if they'd known Marx Nation, 82 years later, would be wringing our hands at all this, they'd have thought us nuts.

  3. Any chance of Noah doing a stage version of Bert and Harry's original script?


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