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Who Done It? (1942)

Approved | | Comedy, Mystery | 6 November 1942 (USA)
Two dumb soda jerks dream of writing radio mysteries. When they try to pitch an idea at a radio station, they end up in the middle of a real murder when the station owner is killed during a broadcast.

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(story), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Chick Larkin / Voice of Himself on Radio
...
Mervin Q. Milgrim / Voice of Himself on Radio
...
Jimmy Turner
William Gargan ...
Police Lt. Lou Moran
Louise Allbritton ...
Jane Little
...
Col. J.R. Andrews
...
Detective Brannigan
...
Art Fraser
Jerome Cowan ...
Marco Heller
...
Juliet Collins
Ludwig Stössel ...
Dr. Anton Marek
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Storyline

Two dumb soda jerks dream of writing radio mysteries. When they try to pitch an idea at a radio station, they end up in the middle of a real murder when the station owner is killed during a broadcast.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Mystery

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 November 1942 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Deux nigauds détectives  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

| (Western Electric Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Contains two references to Bud Abbott and Lou Costello's classic baseball routine, "Who's on First." Lou's exclamation, "Next you'll be telling me Watt's on second base," tops off his watts/volts exchange with Bud. When they later turn on a radio and hear "Who's on First" they promptly turn it off in disgust. See more »

Goofs

Costello running in fright in the radio station crashes through a glass partition, leaving a hole in his shape in the glass. Abbott, following, breaks away part of the glass to get through. Later, we see the hole in the partition in its original form. See more »

Quotes

Chick Larkin: [talking about Juliet Collins] She's only got a couple of buck teeth.
Mervin Q. Milgrim: Why do I care what she paid for them?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Abbott and Costello Meet Captain Kidd (1952) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Murder At Midnight
25 October 2007 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Who Done It finds our intrepid duo as soda jerks who want to be mystery writers and work on the Murder at Midnight Show. Bud and Lou go to a broadcast just in time to witness the real murder of the head of the network, Thomas Gomez.

So what do our two geniuses think to do? They decide to impersonate police officers and try and capture the criminal themselves. Interfering with a police investigation is an offense unto itself, but when Abbott and Costello do it, it's strictly for laughs.

The two cops who don't think it's that funny are William Gargan and William Bendix. Supposedly Costello was not happy with Bendix playing the dim bulb detective because he was getting more laughs than him. Mary Wickes who plays the secretary of Thomas Gomez also said she did not get along with Costello on the set.

The actual murderer turns out to be a very peripheral character who only had a couple of inconsequential lines before he's unmasked at the end. I tend to think there was probably more of his part, but it was edited out. Not that there are not a host of suspects like Patric Knowles, Jerome Cowan, Don Porter, Ludwig Stossel, and even Wickes and Louise Allbritton.

One actor who did not get any billing, but should have because he was very funny constantly getting the better of poor Costello was Walter Tetley who played the fresh mouthed young elevator operator. What he did to Costello bordered on sadism.

Who Done It is a fine slapstick burlesque of all these mystery films that all the studios were putting out back then. I guess it said that if even Abbott and Costello can solve a case anyone can.


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