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I have remembered this, since I was young. I remembered that Alfalfa, was having a big bubbling trouble. Alfalfa, took a drink, and something started to happen badly, his stomach swelled tremendously, and his legs and face could've followed but no. It was fun to watch!!!
This M-G-M comedy short, Bubbling Troubles, is the one hundred eighty-eighth entry in the "Our Gang" series and the one hundredth talkie. Alfalfa is once again pining for Darla as he spells her name alongside his in his alphabet soup and sees her face in it...alongside his rival Butch! His father, not knowing why his son is feeling bad, subscribes some "Settles-itt Powders" to cure his stomach ailment. Meanwhile, Butch shows the gang his "concoction" for dynamite and when Alf arrives, he recognizes the same box of what he just had as the ingredient but when he drinks it, his stomach swells up! Turns out he didn't properly mix it when he drank it. So now the gang tries to find help...The authors of the book, "The Little Rascals: The Life and Times of Our Gang", Leonard Maltin & Richard W. Bann, recognized some elements of this short as the same as previous Hal Roach comedy Sneak Easily which starred Thelma Todd and was directed by former OG helmer Gus Meins. They said this short was very good at comedy externals to which I certainly agree especially when the finale comes. They also said that the gang gave lifeless performances which took the edge off, which I definitely didn't agree with since I didn't notice. So on that note, I definitely recommend Bubbling Troubles. P.S. This was Tommy Bond's twenty-seventh Our Gang comedy, his fifteenth as the bully Butch. It was also his very last but he continued to make film appearances-such as Jimmy Olson in a couple of Superman serials and reuniting with real-life pal Alfalfa in a couple of Gas House Kids movies after both had left the gang. Then after graduating college in the early '50s, he went to the other side of the camera working at a couple of TV stations in California as well as hit shows like "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In" and "The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour". He married a former Miss California-Polly Ellis-and had a son, Tommy II. Late in life, he went before the cameras again as himself. I remember being delightfully surprised seeing him on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" during the '90s publicizing the VHS set of the talkie Little Rascals shorts. Then I read his book, "Darn Right It's Butch" and liking knowing he was one of the few from the gang to live such a good life. I saw him again on another Little Rascals VHS tape introing the shorts showcasing Pete the Pup alongside a dog looking like that animal. It was during this time he became reacquainted with Porky. He eventually died on September 24, 2005. So long, Butch!
Bubbling Troubles (1940)
** (out of 4)
Alfalfa grows tired of Butch always impressing Darla. When Butch is mixing a special "potion," Alfalfa decides to call his bluff by drinking the potion, which soon has Alfalfa bloating up. Soon he and the gang fear that he's really got dynamite in his stomach. BUBBLING TROUBLES certainly has a lot of trouble but then again so was the entire MGM series by this point. It's easy to see why the series was starting to lose fans because it seems each new episode is just so poorly done that you can't help but wonder why the studio even bothered. You've also got to wonder why some people still enjoyed the shorts because it's clear the writers weren't trying to do anything other than get something on the screen no matter how little there was to it. This short here isn't horrible but at the same time there's just nothing all that interesting going on. The only highlight of the film is when the gang thinks that Alfalfa has exploded and they go to tell his parents that he won't be home for dinner. The rest of the film just contains bad gags (like Alfalfa's brothers) and scenes that just drag on (in Butch's laboratory). Only the die-hard fans of the series should try this one.
Alfalfa drinks one of Butch's concoctions and tings that he's going to
blow up at the slightest touch.
Nicely put together film has a great build up and funny pay off. This is one of the better of the MGM films that I've run across and its also one of the even fewer ones that I would show to anyone. This is one of the few of the series where everything comes together, its the right amount of time to tell the story, it has good gags, reasonable performances and a funny premise.
I really liked this film.
7 out of 10
An OUR GANG Comedy Short.
After drinking unmixed digestive powders, Alfalfa gets BUBBLING TROUBLES. When his abdomen swells tremendously, Spanky and the Gang are certain he's swallowed some of Butch's `liquid dynamite'. Now if they can only get Alfalfa home without his exploding...
Few real laughs in this otherwise innocuous little film. Made after MGM got direct control of the Gang, and with the kids themselves noticeably growing up, it bears scant resemblance to the Rascals' classics of yesteryear.
The "plot" of this short, such as it is, involves Alfalfa drinking
Butch's "dynamite" which swells his belly in an unconvincing special
effect. Of course, it's not really dynamite, but some strange stomach
medicine which works via some strange unlikely-even-for-a-cartoon
logic. There are no laughs in this short at ALL, and the punchline is
Spanky and Alfalfa were too old for this stuff, and it's no wonder that this was Tommy Bond's final short. Everybody's acting is horrendously forced and stilted, particularly Darla and Spanky. And let's not even talk about Robert Blake, who keeps shoving people aside so he can stay in camera view. MGM really was on their way to destroying this series, despite occasional decent efforts like "The Big Premiere."
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