Series: Our Gang

Director: Nate Watt
Producer: Hal Roach
Story: Jack Jevne
Photography: Art Lloyd
Editor: William H. Ziegler
Sound: Oscar Lagerstrom

Stars: Carl Switzer, Darla Hood, Darwood Kaye, Billie Thomas, Eugene Lee, George McFarland
Company: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Released: 26 March 1938
Length: 1 reel
Production No.: K-18
Filming dates: February 9-18, 1938
Rating: -/10

Three Men In A Tub

Available on DVD:

Alfalfa, Spanky, Porky and Buckwheat are having a picnic but Darla is absent. Alfalfa is under the false impression that she is at home looking after the baby but he is incensed when he discovers that Darla is actually enjoying a leisurely ride on the lake with Waldo in his boat. Alfalfa instructs Porky and Buckwheat to deliver a message to Waldo, issuing him a challenge to a boat race on Toluca Lake, with the winner getting Darla. Buckwheat delivers the hand-written challenge to Waldo from Alfalfa as Waldo tends to his boat after a ride on the lake with Darla. Whilst Waldo is distracted, Porky notices watter pouring from underneath Waldo's boat and sabotages it by placing a cork in the small hole to temporarily plug the leak.
The next day the group of kids gather around the lakeside to watch the race. Waldo not only declares that he will win the race but also beat the record for the fastest time on the lake. Waldo is in one boat with Darla, whilst Alfalfa mans his boat with Buckwheat and Porky. The two boys race, each taking the lead at different times, and Waldo almost going over a waterfall but saving himself and Darla in the nick of time. Eventually Waldo's boat begins to sink when the previously-placed cork bursts and fills the boat with water. The victorious Alfalfa dives into the lake, swims over to Waldo's boat and rescues Darla just as the boat sinks.

Favourite bit
There is one rather funny moment when the kids watching the race walk onto a plank overhanging the lake to cheer on the racing boys. One of the kids (Harold Switzer) gets a pat on the back from Spanky, but the slight nock sends him into the lake!

This was the 165th film in the series to be released.
The first line of the film is spoken by Spanky.
When Porky is swinging the hammer he almost smashes the horse in the face with it when he misses a swing.
Waldo's long speech where he tells Buckwheat and Porky to relay his message back to Alfalfa lasts for 51 seconds.
When Spanky reveals Alfalfa's boat to the crowd of kids, the plank is seen directly opposite the lake in the background.
John Collum fires the gun to signal the start of the race. Usually when this happens the shooter fires straight up, but he fires in the direction of the boats!
Many of the shots of the boats on the lake during the race were shot in front of a rear-projected screen. It is easy to tell which shots because there is a noticeable echo with the kids' acoustics as they speak, which indicates the dialogue was recorded not in the open air but on a sound stage.
Alfalfa names his boat "Darla the 4th".
When Bessie (the horse) first starts to walk (carrying Buckwheat and Porky) you can see a thin fishing line behind it in a horizontal position.
The film has been released onto DVD in a colorized form by a German distributor.
There are no adults seen during the film.
Spanky is not referred to by name in the film.
Toluca Lake doubles for Malibu Lake, which is part of the Lake Malibu Club in the Santa Monica mountains.
My opinion
Enjoyable, except for the annoying performance from the fickle Darla.

Carl Switzer
Darla Hood
Darwood Kaye
Eugene Lee
George McFarland
Billie Thomas
John Collum
Boy who starts the race
Gary Jasgur
Race starter
Sheila Brown
Spectator [back row, third from left]
Audrey Carol
Spectator [back row, second from right]
Tommy McFarland
Harold Switzer
Boy that Spanky pushes
Jerry Tucker
Spectator [back row, far right]

CREDITS (click image to enlarge)

(click any image to enlarge)

(click any image to enlarge)

The Little Rascals: The Life And Times Of Our Gang by Leonard Maltin & Richard W. Bann (book) (Robert Demoss/The Lucky Corner)

This page was last updated on: 26 March 203