The Bootleg Files: The Three Stooges in Stupor Heroes

BOOTLEG FILES 796: “The Three Stooges in Stupor Heroes” (2012 fan film).

LAST SEEN: On YouTube.


REASON FOR BOOTLEG STATUS: Unauthorized production that borrows copyright protected material from the Three Stooges and DC Comics.


There seems to be a surplus number of fan films based on “Star Wars,” superhero flicks, James Bond adventures and popular horror franchises. But how come there is a deficit of Three Stooges-inspired fan films?

Fortunately, the lack of quantity is balanced by a work of quality – a 2012 short created by a group called The Chublin Brothers titled “The Three Stooges in Stupor Heroes.” This work mashes up the Stooges with the Justice League into a cute and highly amusing romp.

The film finds Moe, Larry and Curly (or three very unreasonable facsimiles) in Happy Harbor, where the trio are janitorial workers sent to clean a house. But Curly read the map upside down and they wind up on the other side of town – inside the cave that is the headquarters of the Justice League. They meet Martian Manhunter – who looks more like one of the aliens from “Santa Claus Conquers the Martians” than the DC character – who is seated at a desk with an old-fashioned radio and a microphone. Martian Manhunter is playing cat’s cradle with string when the Stooges volunteer themselves to be sidekicks for the superheroes – but after Moe accidentally dumps the contents of a water bucket on Martian Manhunter, the Stooges are blacklisted from Justice League entry.

Mercifully for the threesome, Martian Manhunter leaves before a radio transmission seeks help to rescue Wonder Woman, who has been kidnapped by Gorilla Grodd and his gang. The Stooges exit to a nearby costume shop to dress like superheroes – Moe becomes Superman, Larry is the Flash and Curly is initially Santa Claus before his comrades force him to take off the red-and-white suit and dress like Green Lantern.

The Stooges burst into Gorilla Grodd’s hideout in a warehouse – the place is full of boxes marked “Bananas” and “More Bananas,” which makes sense because Gorilla Grodd is a talking gorilla in a striped jacket; the big ape has human henchman who look like they’re still in high school. The Stooges make a dismal attempt at pretending they’re real superheroes, but after some knockabout (including the dropping of bowling balls on the henchmen’s heads), the unlikely tri save the day – only to be triple-smacked by an angry Wonder Woman who is angry she was rescued by impostors.

“The Three Stooges in Stupor Heroes” is clearly a labor of love, complete with sound effects and Curly’s vocal mannerism borrowed from the original two-reelers and expertly placed on this soundtrack. While the actors’ resemblance to the legendary knuckleheads is iffy, George Doerr IV’s Moe, Jeff Peeler’s Larry and Kevin McCameron’s Curly capture the spirit and style of the slapstick icons. Thomas Hayes’ script and direction offer a worthy tribute to the peak work of Del Lord, Edward Bernds and Charley Chase when they were at the steering wheel of the two-reeler classics.

Now, you may be wondering – who are the Chublin Brothers? From what I can gather, they appear to be a comedy squad who’ve created comic videos intermittently over the past 11 years. Their Stooges film seems to be the most elaborate of the bunch – and if this is any indication of what they were capable of creating, it is a major shame they have not been more active.

Of course, the film makes an unauthorized use of multiple trademark-protected characters, so any commercial home video release is out of the question. But the film can be seen on YouTube, and it is a delightful little gem that deserves to be seen. N’yuk, n’yuk, n’yuk, indeed!

IMPORTANT NOTICE: While this weekly column acknowledges the presence of rare film and television productions through the so-called collector-to-collector market, this should not be seen as encouraging or condoning the unauthorized duplication and distribution of copyright-protected material, either through DVDs or Blu-ray discs or through postings on Internet video sites.

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