Slapstick Steps Up

Time for a celebratory pratfall? Over-the-air channel Decades will run a four-day salute to slapstick superstars The Three Stooges next week, complete with a nine-part documentary, classic shorts and four feature films.

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Don’t know a pratfall from a poke in the eye? Then maybe you should sign up for Painfully Funny, Turner Classic Movie’s free online course in slapstick comedy that gets underway this Sunday, August 28, and runs through October 8. You don’t need to receive TCM’s cable channel to enroll in the course; non-TCM subscribers will be able to access links to free online public domain films in addition to being emailed short video clips of slapstick gags each day, Monday through Thursday.

Coincidentally, this coming Monday through Thursday, August 29 to September 1, also marks Decades’ Stooges celebration. The salute features the nine-episode documentary series Hey Moe! Hey Dad!, with three episodes daily, Tuesday through Thursday. In addition, on Monday, you can catch Stooges shorts along with their feature The Three Stooges Meet Hercules (1962); on Tuesday, another feature The Three Stooges in Orbit (1962); on Wednesday The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze (1963), also a feature; and on Thursday the 1960 compilation Stop! Look! And Laugh!

One other feature, Have Rocket, Will Travel (1959), will be the only Stooges film included in the 56 classic slapstick films being showcased in the TCM course, which is offered in partnership with Ball Street University. Those same 56 films will also be featured every Tuesday and Wednesday during September on TCM itself, under the umbrella title Ouch! A Salute to Slapstick.

Here’s a list of stations where you can watch Decades without a cable, satellite or telco subscription.

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About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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