There were originally 3 versions of this film. Version #1 was a half-hour television pilot that never aired. Versions 2 and 3 were one-reel cutdowns of this television pilot that were distributed to theaters in 1963. I am basing my comments on the version of "The 3 Stooges Scrapbook" that I own a color print of, which is one of the 14 minute (not 8 minutes as this database claims) one-reel theatrical cutdowns. The cartoon subject from the pilot ("The Spain Mutiny") was used for the 2nd theatrical cutdown, which was also released as "The Three Stooges Scrapbook". The complete half-hour pilot is considered lost.
The particular version that I am commenting on begins with Stooges rehearsing for their television program when they are evicted from their apartment for violating the "No Cooking" policy. They seek refuge at the home of a professor who believes his plans for a new invention are in danger of being stolen by men from space. The Stooges agree to spend the night there so they can rehearse for their program, but it turns out to be a sleepless night when the spaceman arrives.
I highly recommend the film, as it is a lot of fun. Some fans may not enjoy the fact that the slapstick brand of humor the Stooges are famous for has been toned down some in favor of family oriented humor, but there are still some stooge moments that shine. Also, another complaint that some may have about this film is that there is a laugh-track, but it is not as obtrusive as one would think. It actually works well with the boys (as does the brilliant color). For me, the music track was more annoying, as was the fact that the film does have a bit of an abrupt ending, but it still comes to a logical conclusion.
NOTE: If this storyline for "The Three Stooges Scrapbook" sounds familiar, it's because it was used, along with approx. 90% of the entire television pilot, for the beginning portion of the feature "The Three Stooges In Orbit" (sans laugh-track and color). Some scenes were re-filmed, but by using the footage from "Scrapbook", the producers were able to save some money.
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