Three Stooges Books

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Is everyone excited about the new upcoming Three Stooges movie? Is anyone excited? Are you excited? I’m trying to stay positive about the whole thing, but … pretty much everything except for the original shorts has been pretty awful. The Three Stooges movies were pretty awful, The New Three Stooges television show was pretty awful, the made-for-television 2000 film about the Stooges was pretty awful … so even through the trailer for the new Three Stooges movie looks pretty funny, I’m still viewing it with reserved optimism.

As a kid I used to watch the Stooges every night on “Comedy Court,” a half hour show that followed Benny Hill and showed two Three Stooges shorts. Both my Dad and moreso my Uncle were/are fans of the Stooges, which is probably where my love for the group came from. Over the years I’ve collected several Three Stooges-related books. Here are a few of my favorites.

My all time favorite Three Stooges book is Moe Howard & The 3 Stooges, written by the man himself, Moe Howard. This book contains a ton of behind the scenes pictures of the Stooges both on and off the set. It is filled with trivia and anecdotes, and tells the story of the Stooges starting with Moe and Shemp hitting each other as small children and going all the way through the Stooges’ retirement and eventual passing. If you’re remotely a fan and can only afford to buy one book covering the Stooges, this is the one I would recommend. New copies of this out of print book command a premium, but used copies can be had for $5-$10. (Amazon Link)

My second favorite Three Stooges book is The Three Stooges Book of Scripts, compiled by Joan Howard Maurer, Moe’s daughter. The book contains scripts for only a few Stooge shorts (my favorites are “Men in Black,” “Punch Drunks,” and “Three Little Pigskins”), but also contains several pictures of personal artifacts (photographs and notes) and more anecdotes. It’s presented more like a reference book than a book you would read from cover to cover like Moe’s autobiography, but it’s still a great book to have around. According to Amazon a sequel (Volume 2) was released, which appears to have all the same scripts with new information added. If you can track down a copy of either one at a reasonable price, I’d pick it up.

This is The Official Three Stooges Encyclopedia, which I believe I got as a gift several years ago. The good news is, this encyclopedia contains a lot of facts about the Stooges and the shorts they starred in. The bad news is, if you’re a Stooge fan at all, you probably know everything contained between this book’s covers. The worse news is, everything in this book can be found via Google. Perhaps if you live in Shmowland or Slap Happia and don’t have Internet access you will get some use out of this book, but anyone else should probably pass.

Stoogemania contains puzzles, pictures, and a price guide to some collectibles. This book was released before any of us had heard of the Internet, and I can’t imagine rebuying it now. (Link)

There are a few other Three Stooges books I’d like to pick up. I have heard good things about the Three Stooges Scrapbook, One Fine Stooge: Larry Fine’s Frizzy Life In Pictures, and The Three Stooges: The Triumphs and Tragedies of the Most Popular Comedy Team of All Time. If you’ve read any of those (or would like to send me your old copy!), please let me know.


6 Responses to Three Stooges Books

  1. I’m a huge Stooge fan and had Moe Howard and the 3 Stooges and Stooge Mania. I read those constantly when I was younger.

  2. The Retroist says:

    I want to be excited about the movie, but so far I have not been able to muster anything. Maybe I am just trying to keep my expectations low?

  3. Dar says:

    I rceall many years ago watching this movie, modern one (80’s?) about this guy who keeps hallucinating the Three Stooges and it affects his life.

    It was a God-aweful movie.

  4. Drahken says:

    I loved the stooges when i was a kid, but can’t get into them in more recent years.
    I was reading up about the new movie & I think it’s likely to be a mess. The concept of having the stooges in the modern day is bad enough (I have yet to see a “X in the modern day” rendition of any old classic turn out good), but on top of that they’re apparently going to be in a friggin reality show in the movie. *facepalm*

    I’ve never read any books about the stooges (wasn’t even aware that any existed, although I figured there were probably some biographical type ones out there, there are biographies of every famous person). However, I did watch the various 3 stooges cartoons. There was the robonic stooges, the scooby doo episode they co-starred in, and the “new” 3 stooges (low quality animation, similar to bullwinkle or the original chipmunks show).

  5. Atari Adventure Square says:

    I was more of a Laurel and Hardy boy.
    Loved their silent and spoken comedy and it resonated more with my family than Chaplin and the rest.
    So when I caught the 3 Stooges a bit later on in cartoon format, didn’t know what to make of em.
    And I guess you had to grow up with their broad comedy to have that pure escapist connection.

    Saw the rather depressing TV bio movie in 2000 (with Michael Chiklis as Curly) and the backstory of how these Hollywood legends ended up in the poor house from studios robbing them throughout their lives weighs more than the uplifting comedy you get from their films and memories.

    Eh, I dunno. Seeing Mel Gibson use that slapstick mojo in the Lethal Weapon movies was an indicator that brute force comedy is an acquired taste.

    Still, I’m all for comedy, so I hope this makes people laugh.

  6. MrPachynema says:

    I was not aware of a new 3 stooges film! thanks for the info.
    please tell me we will get Curly in the film; no shemp, no joe besser, no joe derita?

    did a quick search and Yes! it is Curly! awesome!
    :)

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