Spanky's mother's pushes him to join a local theater amateur night.




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Credited cast:
Spanky (as Our Gang)
Matthew 'Stymie' Beard ...
Stymie (as Our Gang)
Scotty Beckett ...
Scotty (as Our Gang)
Buckwheat (as Our Gang)
Jerry Tucker ...
Jerry (as Our Gang)
Eileen Bernstein ...
Our Gang member (as Our Gang)
Alvin Buckelew ...
Alvin (as Our Gang)
Sidney Kibrick ...
Our Gang member (as Our Gang)
Cecelia Murray ...
Our Gang member (as Our Gang)
Donald Proffitt ...
Our Gang member (as Our Gang)
Merrill Strong ...
Our Gang member (as Our Gang)
Marianne Edwards ...
Daisy Dimple (as Our Gang)
Pete the Pup ...
Pete (as Our Gang)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ernie Alexander ...
Audience member
The Cabin Kids ...


At her afternoon tea social Spanky's mother has her son recite for the assembled ladies. It is easily seen they are bored to death as he has no talent. After he finishes the mother shocks everyone ,including her mother and son, by announcing she has signed him up to appear at a local children's talent show. The Grandma tries to intervene to no avail. The gang come up with a plan to sabotage his performance with peashooters and noise makers. Spanky is overjoyed but must keep his mother from finding out. At the theater Spanky meets a little girl who needs the prize money to buy her dancing costume but fell victim to stage fright. Spanky's mother has run afoul of the Master of Cerimonies by showing up with her son not ready to go on then saying he was too much of an artist to open a show. He is a real hard boiled type and well able to deal with the mother. He has kept Spanky's act for last. Spanky has decided he'll win the prize for the little girl but he must tell the gang. As he is ... Written by Harveyweinpop999

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Short | Comedy | Family

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

23 February 1935 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ungerne optræder  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


It was thought though out the industry that slap-stick and especially sight gags didn't work well using female actors. This short certainly shattered that concept. The scene where Spanky's grandmother is raising the curtain with her daughter's dress attached as Spanky's mother fights to keep her dress on combined with the scene after her dress is gone and she is kneeling on stage looking up at her torn dress hanging on the curtain hook and how she looks when it is shown how she looks with her head on top of the stage prop with her head on an animals body is perfect and hysterical. See more »


When The Cabin Kids finish their number they exit the stage and are seen waiting in the wings during Daisy's number. Then they vanish from the rest of the short. When the curtain is raised at the end, all the other performers are there, not the Cabin Kids. They should be there with the other performers, especially since they were in the running to win the prize. There is no reason for them to have left. See more »


Spanky's mother: [She finds Spanky backstage talking to Daisey] Ok Spanky you're on next.
Spanky: Mom if I win the prize can I do anything I want with the money?
Spanky's mother: Why certainly Spanky all I want is that you are a big hit!
Spanky: [Spanky turns to Daisey and says ] Don'y worry girlie the dress is in the bag !
[Spanky and his mother walk towards the stage wings when he pulls on her hand and says ]
Spanky: Wait a minute Mom I have to talk to the gang.
Spanky's mother: [She is totally surprised and says to Spanky ] You can't go out there now, you have to win ...
See more »


Referenced in Sliders: The Java Jive (1999) See more »


Swinging The Blues Away
Music by Marvin Hatley
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

"Beginner's Luck"
5 May 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Beginner's Luck is a hilarious victory over a stage mother by the gang.It is a rascals classic.

The scene opens with Spanky's obnoxious stage mother signing him up to recite Shakespere at a local children's talent show.The gang comes to the rescue with a plan to disrupt his act with peashooters and noisemakers and put an end to his acting days.

Spank's mom has annoyed the MC so much with her line "My son is too much of an artist to open a show"he pushes Spanky's act for the finale.And it turns out to be a grand finale with no one expecting an ending so outrageous especially Spanky or his mother.While awaiting their turn a young girl rushes off the stage from fear as the audience erupts with vicious laughter ,Spanky's mom can be seen saying something to the grandmother probably referring to the hostile crowd,little does she know then how really vicious they will treat her when she makes her unintentional stage debut.

Spanky comes to the aide of the little girl and promises to win the prize and give her the money to buy a special dress.But now he must inform the gang and his mother won't let him leave the stage .She insists she will tell the gang he wants to win,but she just gives them a quick "remember boys we want Spanky to win" and rushes back with a big grin as her little darling is about to go on.Unaware that her actions have just sealed her fate .

When Spanky starts his act the gang goes to work and the audience begins to laugh at him.Spanky's mother won't have this and insists he be taken off.She informs the MC " I WON"T HAVE MY SON LAUGHED AT".She is ignored by the MC who refuses her request.She then decides to go on stage and drag him off but she is quickly grabbed by the MC who tells her he won't allow her to break up his act.

Spanky's mom then attempts to go behind the back stage curtain with a pole and drag him off.While Grandma sees her chance with her daughter down on all fours and totally obsessed with her rescue.Spanky's mother hooks him and starts to reel him in ,just at the point where he is close Grandma begins to raise the back curtain snagging the mother's dress.The grandmother is trying to deliver Spanky's mother a message for putting Spanky on stage and make her daughter the laughing stock and the "icing on the cake "of this embarrassing act.

Spanky's mom squeals with fright as she realizes her predicament .She jumps to her feet in an attempt to free herself,as she squirms around looking to free the hook caught on her dress. Now the audience shifts their attention from Spanky to his mother, as she frantically tries to save herself,her dress and her dignity she is greeted with hoots ,howls and catcalls emanating from the audience.Spanky's mother finds herself in a most undignified position ,as an adult and a mother and an authority figure having her dress hiked by a rising stage curtain, hoisted by her own mother, as she was rescuing her son at a children's talent show!

With a rip her dress is torn off her throwing her to her knees.Clad only in her slip.She is immobilized either from shock or petrified with fear looking up at the theater rafters to see where her dress went.If this poor "damsel in disdress" thought the audience was cruel to Daisey,they erupt with vicious laughter at Spanky's mother's expense.

Spanky looks on in disbelief at what has happened .His mother is sitting back on her heels ,paralazied on stage ,unsheathed from her dress,all to the total enjoyment of the theater audience and everyone on the stage wings who laugh without mercy at this pretty girlie who has been suddenly stripped! Spanky must be thinking how ironic it is he went on to win a dress for a little girl and now his own mother has lost her dress.He quickly grabs a stage prop to shield his now degraded mom and save her T and A from the audience view.This gesture only leads to a further humiliation as the prop has the caricature of a squatting dogs body on it with her head fitting on the top.The audience erupts in howls of laughter at the spectacle of Spanky's mother.Even as the prop goes into place the gang are still using their noisemakers and one sounds like a chicken cackling ,making it look like Spanky's mother is laying an egg!In a sense the gang foiled her attempt to make an actor out of her son ,so the gang made Spanky's mother lay an egg!

Spanky's mother is made a total laughing stock of in her humiliating stage performance.Her failed rescue results in one of the funniest endings in rascals history.It is wonderful to see this pushy stage mom have the tables turned on her by the gang and wind up mortified.

Spanky's mother had these grand ideas about her son becoming a Shakespearian actor only to have him made a laughing stock of on stage, and her not allowing her son to be laughed at which results in her getting her goose cooked in a most embarrassing manner. Spanky's mother degrading humiliation is hysterical to say the least.It is worth watching Spanky's mom get her well deserved due justice.One of the best aspects is Spanky has already won the prize as a comedy act and the viewer is informed of this just as his mom starts her back stage rescue ,so her stripping and her"Giving head " from behind the prop are all unnecessary.The title "Beginner's Luck "is a cruel twist of fate for Spanky and especially his mother who has really gotten the works!Her complete humiliation is so outrageous that the viewer actually feels sorry for this poor silly girl as they howl laughing at her.

12 of 14 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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