So You Want to Be a Paper Hanger (1951) Poster

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Worth seeing so you can get a look at Arthur Q. Bryan
MartinHafer27 October 2010
While this is far from the best of the Joe McDoakes shorts, it is worth seeing for a few of the jokes and in order to see Arthur Q. Bryan in the flesh. Who IS Arthur Q. Bryan? Well, he was the man who provided the voice for Elmer Fudd in the Looney Tunes cartoons and, oddly, he sounds EXACTLY like this character....and looks a bit like him, too!

Joe's wife (the first TV Lois Lane, Phyllis Coates) wants him to wallpaper the room--and have it done by this afternoon for her tea party! Joe (George O'Hanlon) gets his dopey friend to help him. Together, they work sort of like Laurel & Hardy or the Three Stooges but with less finesse or grace. Still, despite this there are some decent laughs--particularly at the end. So PLEASE keep watching and you'll see what I mean. Not great but worth seeing.
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A wall paper hanging comedy to end all wall paper comedies...
jlewis77-126 December 2009
Warning: Spoilers
We've seen this plot many times before... in previous comedy one and two reelers as well as animated cartoons. Yet, it is doubtful that you've seen layer upon layer of gags like this. This is the type of comedy that has Marvin bumbling away in the background with various mishaps, while Joe, in the foreground, is trying to keep the wallpaper from a-rollin' up. You have to watch this twice to catch many jokes.

Then there are the witty one-liners. Of course, Marvin makes his entrance the "hard way" and Joe quips "When are you gonna learn to use the front door?" Ah... speaking of doors... after the job is done, Alice asks the obvious: "Joe, what happened to the front door?"

**spoiler alert**

That ugly scenic-design wallpaper, so fashionable in the forties, not only makes windows and doors disappear. When the FBI arrives to file a missing person report and Joe notices that the wallpaper designs look "bumpier" than usual, he panics and (after three weeks of no "movement") insists that Alice keep the Christmas tree parked EXACTLY where it is...

Add Arthur Q. Bryan (of Fibber McGee/Great Gildersleeve fame and a regular in this series, filmed at the same studio as the Elmer Fudd cartoons he voiced) as a door to door potato-peeler who bugs Marvin three times and you have a black comedy that is too funny to be "disturbing".
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Twisting, Turning, Feigning and Fooling (not a Law Firm)
John T. Ryan15 February 2016
AFTER STARTING OUT looking as if it was a variation on a previous series entry from that period, this one took several sharp turns. So instead of a reworking of SO YOU WANT TO BE A HANDY MAN, it really struck out on its own, bold and trailblazing path.

BY THIS PERIOD, the use of the Narrator had been largely relegated to a highly diminished role; if not eliminated. In this and several from around the same chronological period,. there is no sign or sound of our old friend, Art Gilmore; who had so handily performed the role so well. Art, you were missed.

WE ALSO FIND that Joe's neighbor and comic foil, the nearsighted Marvin (Rodney Bell) had replaced and filled that niche formerly filled by Joe's pal Homer. Homer (Clifton Young) had passed away at age 33 that previous year and did leave a hole in the regular story lines.

AS FOR THIS story's being unique and full of plot twists, we can only say that so much of the story as it unfolds is totally unexpected and hits many different targets. The range is phenomenal and varies from the stuff of an Edgar Allen Poe to Mack Sennett.

ALL OF THIS variable cinematic behavioural meandering came as a real surprise; albeit a very pleasant one!

WE VOTE TO give it a ****+ rating, right Schultz!
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Fun Short
Michael_Elliott24 February 2009
So You Want to Be a Paper Hanger (1951)

*** (out of 4)

Another entry in the long running Joe McDoakes series this time finds the husband being pressured into putting up wallpaper for his wife (Phyllis Coates) who has been invited to host a club of women. With the help of his neighbor Marvin (Rodney Bell), Joe gets going but soon things start to go wrong. This is yet another strong entry in the series with non-stop laughs right from the start and all the way to the closing joke, which had tears running down my eyes from laughing so hard. The subplot of the film deals with the men trying to finish the room so quickly that Marvin gets caught behind the paper and soon the police are investigating his disappearance. I won't spoil the outcome but it's a very funny one. Arthur Q. Bryan, best known for the voice of Elmer Fudd, appears here as a door-to-door salesman and nearly steals the film. And yes, he uses his Fudd voice.
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