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The Hobo (1917)

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Billy is a hobo who hangs around the train station. He creates disruption in the ticket office, at the lunch counter, and in the lives of some of the customers.


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Credited cast:
Billy West ...
The Hobo
Harold (as Babe Hardy)
Leo White ...
Mr. Fox
Bud Ross ...
(as Budd Ross)
Virginia Clark ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Harry Naughton ...


A tramp who has been hiding underneath a railroad car wakes up while the train is stopped, and follows a pretty girl into the train station. When he flirts with her, the girl's boyfriend becomes angry and provokes a series of confrontations with the tramp. When things calm down, the tramp winds up working at the station's lunch counter, where he soon runs into some new predicaments. Written by Snow Leopard

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

tramp | train | car | pancake | food fight | See All (7) »


Comedy | Short





Release Date:

1 November 1917 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Station Master  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Babe Hardy's gag of eating a long link of sausages in one sitting have obvious stops and starts throughout. See more »


Edited into The Further Perils of Laurel and Hardy (1967) See more »

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User Reviews

A Reasonable Imitation of Chaplin
3 July 2001 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

In the short comedy "The Hobo", Billy West does a reasonable imitation of Charlie Chaplin, using a character very obviously based on Chaplin's famous "Tramp". There must have been a good number of would-be imitators of Chaplin during the era, and West was probably among the best of them. His character is quite similar, and he mimics Chaplin's basic style fairly closely.

In this feature, West plays a vagrant hanging out in and around a train station, who gets into some escapades at the ticket office and lunch counter. West is not bad at this type of material, and there are some good moments, although it is clearly a copy of the real Chaplin. West seems to have been a decent comic in his own right, and could well have had some success with other material if he had not settled into a niche as a Chaplin imitator.

Oliver Hardy also appears here, and he gets the chance to provide a couple of amusing moments. The overall package is certainly watchable, and probably about average for the time and genre.

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