Series: Paul Parrott
Director: Jay A. Howe
Producer: Hal Roach
Titles: H.M. Walker
Stars: James Parrott, Katherine Grant, Noah Young, George Rowe, Mark Jones, Wallace Howe
Company: Pathé Exchange
Released: 08 July 1923
Length: 1 reel
Production No.: D-16
Filming dates: May 7-15, 1923
The Uncovered Wagon
BEST DVD VERSION
Um, okay this is how it goes... Paul is driving along a track in a wagon with a goat on board when he stops. The stubborn goat who is attached to the back by a rope is refusing to budge so Paul gets out of his truck. For some unknown reason this irritates 'Hard-boiled' Jackson (Noah Young) who is standing by the side of the track. After Jackson begins to manhandle Paul, little George Rowe steps in and smacks Jackson down onto the ground. Paul then spends an age trying to load the goat onto the back of his open-back wagon. Paul and his troupe pull up to a river where they meet Kid Carson (Mark Jones). After some more pushing and shoving, Paul tries to find a way to get all the wagons across the water so he jumps into the river (see favourite bit) to find out how deep it is. This is followed by all the wagons driving through the river up to their roofs in water.
Weeks later the travelling wagons arrive at a trail where they are confronted by native American Indians. They park up and using their wagons as shields they begin unloading their ammunition in the Indians' direction. During the shooting, Jackson takes aim at Paul but his sneaky attack is thwarted by George Rowe (there is a long running gag where Rowe repeatedly outsmarts Noah Young's character). Paul takes aim at the enemy with a bow and arrow and knocks a guy off a unicycle (I know, random, right?) Paul then stuffs a piece of wood down the back of Sammy Brooks' trousers and entices the Indians to shoot their arrows into his arse before picking them out and using the weapons back at the Indians. A big fight breaks out, Paul rescues the girl and flees on a train... or tries to before the Indians jump out of it and chase him down the track and into the distance.
Actually quite a dangerous stunt to dive head-first into such a shallow amount of water. Balls.
• Copyrighted June 9, 1923.
• Also known as Uncovered Wagons.
• Reiussed April 25, 1926.
• Did they really just drive a live caged bird in the car under the water?
• It's a spoof of James Cruze's THE COVERED WAGON, similar to Stan Laurel's THE SOILERS, satirizing characters and particular situations, using anachronisms to make fun of the original (the Model T Fords "ford" the river). E.g. Skingate=Wingate, Bunion=Banion, Woodskull=Woodhull. The Hal Roach Studio treadmill gets a good bit of use in the climactic scenes. It's a lot more entertaining when you just see the excerpts used in the video for Iron Maiden's "Run To The Hills".
What the experts say
• "It's just another awfully boring ten minutes watching a Paul Parrott film without any desire to want to carry on living afterwards." ~ Lord Heath.
The guy who decks Jackson
Robert Winslow (trivia)
This page was last updated on: 08 July 2019