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Thursday, June 15, 2017

How's For A Langdon Revisit ...

Fourth Of The Big Three in Two Shorts

Watched a pair of Harry Langdons from the Mack Sennett Blu-Ray, Saturday Afternoon and Fiddlesticks. It was impulse, not planned, so I came fresh to Langdon after a while of not thinking about him. Michael Hayde does audio on Saturday Afternoon, called it probably Langdon's best short. Blackhawk had several Langdons on 8 and 16mm, this about an only way to see them outside of glimpse in a Youngson parade. Every fan of sight comedy has an opinion on what made Langdon special, and even ones who don't like him will admit Langdon was something special, or at least singular. A 20's public agreed and said so in bought tickets. Langdon was a pet rock of clowns for a short time, worked long past that, was guilty at most of being overexposed, not his fault but more that of once-employer Mack Sennett, who held back shorts against calculation that Langdon was approaching a peak, so why not save bread to dip in richer gravy?

Many have estimated Langdon's impact on other comedians. He made them all slow down. Audiences found that refreshing. Chaplin, Keaton, and Lloyd had applied brakes to features they graduated to, common sense dictating you couldn't run pell-mell for an hour or more. What Langdon did was bring the concept to shorts, of which philosophy had always been faster is better, fastest is best. Harry would stand still or dither for precious minutes of a two-reeler and think nothing of it. Sennett had to be convinced of sense in that. Eventually he was. Comics as result aped Langdon outright, the rest incorporating at least bits of him into their act. Stan Laurel was reborn in Langdon's image. Had there been no Harry, there probably would have been no Laurel and Hardy, or at least not a Laurel-Hardy like two we know. Langdon takes getting used to ... he would have admitted as much, I'm sure ... but once aboard, you're fine. Are shorts a best start? Probably so, as in small quantity to develop taste for anything. To try Langdon is to experience something utterly new. There's not a comedian of a past century like him, unless I've missed a copy or inspiration somewhere. Did any rising star since Langdon's late-20's height call him a role model, or after the 30's, mention him at all? Saturday Afternoon has Harry and Vernon Dent trolling sun-kissed L.A. for dates. There's a wife in the Langdon household, as often was case, even as we can't imagine such a union being consummated. An effective scene at the start has her advised by a "grass widow" (husband having split) that men must be tight-controlled. Bad advise we know from the friend's own circumstance, which the short doesn't make a point of, but subtext is there, and explains why Mrs. Harry softens somewhat later on.

Fiddlesticks has Langdon turned out of a family to which he already seems alien. They don't like him or his bull fiddle, but a junk man knows how to make most of Harry's least talent, gagging from there inventive and not so indulgent of stood-still Langdon as features would be. Most of  current fans have waited lifetimes for lost comedians like Langdon and Charley Chase to be truly found and lionized like they deserve. That is, by a wider public. What we've had instead is a  public continuing to overlook not only Langdon and Chase, but forgetting even Our Gang, Laurel-Hardy, Bill Fields, the lot of those for whom we thought lamps were permanently lit. I'm glad (barely enough) discs can be sold for most all of Langdon's extant silents (Chase's too). It's fan-base, of course, that make this possible, labors being for love, never for profit, as how much cash could there be in comedy so old, wonderful as so much of it still is.


Blogger Reg Hartt said...

I was watching THREE'S A CROWD when a couple of fellows in their twenties walked in. "Can we watch?" they asked.

They had never heard of Harry Langdon. They had not read it is not one of his best. They laughed themselves silly.

6:55 AM  
Blogger Dave K said...

Lovely Happy Birthday post on Harry Langdon (June 15, 1884)! One of my favorites and I think the observation on the Laurel and Hardy influence is spot on. He, of course, shares screenplay credit on four of L&H's best features. And I'm afraid I'm a fan of both THE CHASER and THREE'S A CROWD... weird but funny!

10:02 AM  
Blogger lmshah said...

Perhaps the problem with today's "culture" not tuning into much of any of the great comedians is that we have raised several generations of pretty damn humorless people.

I knew we were in trouble when I heard W.C. Fields being described as "politically incorrect", and "glorifying alcoholism". Takes someone clueless beyond words (and certainly nowhere near irony) to be able to only take away that from Fields' comedy.

Same with Langdon, I've heard too many say he "creeps them out" too much to watch him, and that just tells me they're not even in the same universe as the point. He is supposed to make an audience feel uneasy in his comedy, he gets his laughs by causing tension and then relieving it. One must watch him with a detachment most people can't even achieve in viewing their own lives anymore, so how can they do it watching comedy?

I love your description of Langdon as the "pet rock" of comedy, that does hit the nail on the head with quite some accuracy, he is the most absurdist of all the comedians, trying to cxplain him does nothing but kill the comedy. It is a much better description of him that the very inaccurate "Little Elf" moniker unfortunately propagated by the Harter and Hayde book, "Little Elf" was a Capra phrase, and is one I certainly doubt would have been used by Langdon himself, his own vision of the character was darker and more surreal than Capra's, which is why their creative relationship was doomed at some point whatever happened.


5:09 PM  
Blogger DBenson said...

Recently watched "When Comedy Was King", which takes the old line of Langdon going for an offbeat comedy "full of pathos". The narration also asserts he was as clueless as the character he played, which was provided for him by others -- the legend credited to former colleague Frank Capra. That's like saying Keaton was a failed tragedian because he never smiled and didn't know he was making comedies because he'd react with surprise to things.

In the mostly excellent "The Silent Clowns", Walter Kerr somehow thinks "The Chaser" is going for pathos and sentiment. Watching now, it's clearly a straightforward, sometimes heavy-handed comedy about the henpecked husband of one o' them there Liberated Wimmin.

Perhaps it was the "baby" image that made audiences resistant to comedy they'd accept from Chaplin's Little Tramp, a grown man who was clever and often cynical even when being sentimental.

11:51 PM  
Blogger Kevin K. said...

Langdon' performance in the Hal Roach talkie "The Head Guy" made me think that Andy Kaufman studied him quite judiciously.

1:46 AM  
Blogger DBenson said...

The shot of Harry with the two presumed streetwalkers raises some questions.

The joke is that Harry's too innocent to recognize how their expressions, poses and wardrobe (salacious or merely vulgar in 1926?) flag them as women too low even for pickup artist Vernon (He's smooching with a girl he just met in short order, and he fixes up her friend with married man Harry. For all we know he's married too. And the two pert "heartbreakers" are cheating on their jealous, thuggish boyfriends).

Now, the assumption is that a typical small-town audience DID recognize the ladies as Soiled Doves, and reacted with laughter rather than outrage. Was the line between decent and indecent women so clear? That the sequence goes on for a bit suggests it survived preview audiences and -- intriguingly -- censors.

It also points up that while Langdon's character was innocent, Langdon's films sometimes weren't. In "The Strong Man" a crook's vampish moll tries to retrieve a bankroll from the lining of his coat; he thinks she's going to assault him (later, he demonstrates for the heroine how he fiercely defended his honor). In "The Chaser", henpecked Harry wears an apron while housekeeping; a repo man decides that's good enough and makes a pass (does he think Harry's a woman, or that he's gay?). And "Long Pants" ... where to begin?

3:36 AM  
Blogger John McElwee said...

Dan Mercer considers comedy contributions of Harry Langdon:

I very much enjoyed your take on the Harry Langdon phenomenon, especially your insight into Langdon’s influence.

No Langdon, then no Stan Laurel and no Laurel and Hardy.

There are differences, of course, between Langdon and the Laurel of Laurel and Hardy. The beatific moon of Laurel’s innocence is always fixed in space by the massive self-regard of the rotund Hardy. Their mechanics function along the lines of Newtonian physics in the every-day reality of this world.

Langdon’s universe is oriented by quantum mechanics, with the comedy flitting in and out of existence with no more predictability than Schroeder’s Cat. Half of it seems to consist of setting up gags that lead to nowhere. A distracted Langdon might put spoonful after spoonful of sugar into a cup of coffee, then move on, the coffee forgotten. Or perhaps he was following the custom of the ancient Hebrews, for whom the recitation of the first line of a psalm was taken as the incorporation of the whole of it. If we already know the gag, do we really need the payoff?

Had the Three Stooges followed this approach, their shorts would have run perhaps a minute at most, and their features somewhat less.

I was once shown Langdon’s “Three’s a Crowd”—I think that that’s a better way of putting it than that it was imposed or inflicted upon me—and was not reduced to a state of hilarity, unless frustration and incredulity are forms of hilarity, but I was awfully interested from beginning to end in what he was doing. If it wasn’t necessarily funny, it was always strange and wonderful.

Some months ago, I watched an early talkie short Langdon made for Hal Roach. I was struck by the trouble they went to in finding a voice and dialog for the Langdon character that would complement his approach to comedy. What they came up with was a kind of off-beat patter song rendered in a querulous, keening voice, a little like Jack Mercer’s ad-libs for Popeye but with a certain nascent poetry. It was surprisingly effective, suggesting that someone had a keen appreciation for how the character worked.

If that someone was Langdon himself, contrary to his legendary incomprehension, it would not be the oddest aspect of his comedy.

12:03 PM  
Blogger John McElwee said...

Richard M. Roberts shares some additional thoughts on Harry Langdon (Part One):


This was too long to post directly:

It was indeed Langdon and Langdon only who created his characters odd vocal style, he had been working on that character in vaudeville for decades before he came to films, and if you watch him in silents, you realize he is babbling along the same way in his silent films as he does in his sound films.

And yes, with Langdon, frustration and incredulity are indeed forms of hilarity, it's pretty much the basis of his whole schtick. In vaudeville, Langdon discovered that if one can create continual rising tension in an audience by the comic situation, then the slightest reaction or movement from the comic will break that tension and get a laugh. In other words, Langdon pulls the audience's string so tight, that he merely has to flick it to touch the right note. Tha Andy Kaufman analogy is correct, it's the same sort of humor, and it was essential for Kaufman to keep the audience off-base and kilter, never knowing if what he was doing was a joke or whether he was serious, same with Langdon. Just like Kaufman, he is basically working against the standard comedy tropes, whereas a standard comedian should act wild, crazy and strange to set himself apart from the reactions of a "normal" world, Langdon makes his comic world so strange, wild, and crazy that if he works to do as little as possible and be so ineffectual in his reaction to what is going on around him, the audience who is waiting for him to do something to get himself out of whatever danger is before him is surprised by his inaction and gives him the laugh.

Ths classic Langdon mastershot in his films is the big bully, Vernon Dent, Bud Jamison, whomever is playing his wife, etc. to be in picture foreground, back to camera, standing down Langdon in a threatening manner, then Langdon is on opposite side, in the background, doing all he can in his performance to anchor himself in that place when in all logic, he should take off and run, you can imagine this set-up working just as well in a proscenium arch. The other Langdon comic set-up is to place him in a dangerous place, hanging off a cliff, the middle of a busy street, the midst of a shootout between cops and criminals, and what does he do, he stays put, he may flutter about a little, dodging bullets as they fly past him, but whatever he tries to do, he doesn't get out of the way. All of the laughs are in Langdon's inappropriate response to whatever is going on, which is why so many of his "gags" lead to nowhere, the gag is meaningless, all of the laughs are in his reaction.

2:18 PM  
Blogger Michael said...

"Was the line between decent and indecent women so clear?"

In Hollywood stereotyping it was, not so sure about reality.

I watched Three Comrades with a friend once. At the end I said something about it being an early film about the Nazis vs Communists and my friend said, what, where did you get that? Well, because the Nazis all had high waists and belts across their shirts, and Robert Young had a worker's cap. Obvious-- to 1938...

But anyway, back to Langdon, interesting question about whether anybody else has ever done comedy by slowing way down. Obviously not in the same way as a silent comic. But think of that first batch of Saturday Night Live comedians, all getting frantic and edgy... and then Bill Murray comes along, takes it deadpan and then increasingly mournful, even. The same instinct for a different time in comedy.

2:18 PM  
Blogger John McElwee said...

Part Two from Richard M. Roberts:

Langdon is the one who discovered this way of doing comedy and made it work for him, his "legendary incomprehension" of his comedy style was just that: legendary, or in other words,as most "legends" actually are: bulls**t. It was Frank Capra who didn't understand Langdon's character, but he managed to get his licks in and get even for Langdon's finally firing him when Langdon was long gone, and unable to defend himself, and the film buffs and historians, who are always much happier to parrott something they once read in a book somewhere rather than actually go out and research and learn for themselves, spread the nonsense. Langdon was no broken-down bumbling uneducated vaudevillian as Capra tried to paint him, he was much like Buster Keaton, a self-educated and multi-faced creator (Langdon could play many multiple musical instruments, and was also an accomplished artist and sculptor)who had formed his life-view growing up in the very rough world of medicine shows, touring companies, and low-end vaudeville, a life in which he ran away from Council Bluffs, Iowa to join when he was barely a teenager, and managed to work his way up through to become a major Broadway and Variety headliner by the time film companies were fighting for his services to hire. Langdon knew what he was doing creatively, and he fought Mack Sennett, Frank Capra, and whomever else he had to do it.

This is why Langdon was always pretty much a comedian's comedian, his fellow comics knew how original his way of working was, and he influenced all of them, Chaplin on down, but it was a rather dangerous style of comedy, he was really walking a tightrope from which one could easily fall, and Langdon did. The creative split between Langdon and Capra was not because Harry wanted to do pathos, it was because Langdon's comic view was so much darker than Capra's, who wanted to do the "Capracorn" that he later became famous for on his own. Langdon was more interested in making a gag sequence out of the rowboat murder in Dreiser's AN AMERICAN TRAGEDY as he sets out to do in LONG PANTS, the film which caused Capra's firing and started Langdon's downfall. Langdon knew that his character's comic world had to be dark and strange to get laughs, but when he made it too dark and strange, he finally alienated his audience, and just like Keaton, Langdon was a total right-brainer, brilliant creatively, but no damn good as a business man, and just like Keaton, he finally damaged his career.

Yet also just like Keaton, it didn't destroy him, Langdon kept on working, most don't realize that Langdon made more sound films than he made silents, and he continued to create more strange comedy in sometimes less-than-perfect circumstances, but continue to create he did, right up to his too-early death in 1944.


2:19 PM  
Blogger John McElwee said...

I'd like to add here that the most rewarding aspect of doing Greenbriar Picture Shows is getting such thoughtful analysis on topics at hand from folks like Dan Mercer, Richard M. Roberts, Donald Benson, Kevin K., Reg Hart, and others. GPS would be a lonelier place without the wonderful contribution all of you make, and I thank you for it.

2:24 PM  
Blogger DBenson said...

Apropos of Mr. Roberts's comments about the "comedian's comedian": Kerr proposes in "The Silent Clowns" that Langdon was funny to audiences familiar with silent comedy and with the rules he was breaking. In another context (here?) there was a quote from Kerr about always showing a more conventional silent comedy before showing a Langdon, as even brief exposure to what was "normal" heightened Langdon's impact on modern viewers.

Also, a 2014 interview with Harry Langdon Jr, which is mostly about his own life and career but the interviewer steers him onto the subject of his father a few times:

6:43 PM  
Blogger Scott MacGillivray said...

I especially enjoy one of Harry Langdon's Columbia shorts, A DOGGONE MIXUP -- because he's playing a new character and using a new makeup. instead of being the white-faced baby, he's behaving in the Caspar Milquetoast manner, he's wearing a wispy mustache, and he's functioning as an adult in the working world (with Vernon Dent as his boss and Ann Doran as his long-suffering wife). I wish he'd kept using this characterization in two-reelers, although there are hints of it in his '40s work (ALL-AMERICAN CO-ED, BLOCK BUSTERS, HOT RHYTHM).

7:20 PM  
Blogger stinky fitzwizzle said...

Stinky was saddened to realize he was not specifically named in the list of wonderful contributors, then he saw it said "thoughtful analysis" and understood why.

Stinky also enjoys the comment section!

10:17 AM  
Blogger John McElwee said...

Stinky just didn't happen to have commented on the Harry Langdon post when I mentioned those readers who did, but Stinky's contributions are valued no less for it.

12:13 PM  
Blogger stinky fitzwizzle said...

Thanks. Stinky needs to re-visit Langdon, but he is pretty sure of one thing: just about everything Capra says has to be taken with a grain of salt. And Stinky is trying to phrase that in the nicest way possible.

3:12 PM  
Blogger lmshah said...

In talkies, Langdon proved he could also be a capable character actor, and yes, the more normal but befuddled middle-aged man he plays in features like MISBEHAVING HUSBANDS are very charming and point to the way his career might have progressed had he lived. In fact, the third and final moustached performance he gave in Republic's SWINGIN' ON A RAINBOW (1945) is a wonderful character role, it's like he was working to take on sort of Robert Benchley parts while still sneaking in a Langdonesque mannerism or two.


6:38 PM  
Blogger William Ferry said...

By no stretch of the imagination can I hope to equal the eloquence of these comments from others whose opinion and expertise I respect. I will add that Harry Langdon is quite marvelous. Even his early films like PICKING PEACHES or SMILE PLEASE are extremely funny. It's especially worth noting that he isn't even really doing the character yet - your expectations would lead you to conclude the films would be duds because he's doing gags that "anyone" could do. But the wonderful thing is, they aren't, even when they go off into two or three plot tangents. Harry is along for the ride but I think he's in the driver's seat.

I've made the point that Keaton's MGM films would be funnier if someone else was starring in them, so I don't think gags and comedians are necessarily interchangeable. But Langdon is able to execute uncharacteristic gags and situations.

Langdon's work is very much well-worth seeking out and I can only offer high praise to collections like HARRY LANGDON: LOST AND FOUND, THE MACK SENNETT COLLECTION, and Kino's releases of his extant First National features.

9:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to see you're taking up Langdon's cause again, John, and as usual thank you for the plug. I have no regrets that Chuck Harter and I titled our book LITTLE ELF - whatever one's opinion of its accuracy, it has a nicer ring than PET ROCK - but I DO regret that we credited the appellation to Frank Capra. We debunked all the other Capra myths in LITTLE ELF's pages, which is still the definitive resource for Langdon's vaudeville and post-silent era careers, but this one got by us.

Capra claims to have conjured up the description in a Sennett screening room, but in fact he lifted it from John S. Cohen Jr.'s review of "The Strong Man" in THE NEW YORK SUN of September 7, 1926:

"Harry Langdon, that little elf who floated to Hollywood on a moon beam, has definitely arrived as a stellar cinema attraction. As proof go to the Mark Strand, where 'The Strong Man' is playing, and look and listen. The proverbial tales of laughter have not resounded so fulsomely in that theater since the history making days of 'The Gold Rush.' All of the credit belongs to Langdon, and, unless I miss my wildest guess, this laughter presages that he will soon costar with Chaplin in the affections of the multitude."


12:28 AM  
Blogger lmshah said...

Michael, how do we prove Capra took it from Cohen? Capra could have been using it before that and it found it's way into press releases or interviews and Cohen could have picked it up from there.

In any event, it's of no import who coined the term, it was the way Capra saw the character---not Langdon, and I believe it was exactly that issue that finally caused their parting of the ways, Capra wanted to go in Capra directions, Langdon wanted to go in other directions, Langdon was the Producer and Star, so Capra got fired.

What amazed me was that years later, Capra was still so bitter about that firing, talk about someone too self-absorbed to be unable to look at the big picture in hindsight and realize that Langdon unknowingly did him the biggest favor of his life in firing him, otherwise how would he have ended up at Columbia Pictures and become the big, famous, "name above the title" Director he became. Would Frank had really rather been Arthur Ripley, who remained with Langdon, lets compare those two careers. Age and wisdom should have tempered that grudge, but the ego wouldn't let it, and Frank Capra's autobiography then became his last great work of fiction, even without Robert Riskin writing it, and nothing suffered more from it than Harry Langdon's memory.


5:19 AM  
Blogger Reg Hartt said...

Just got a dvd of Buster in Le Roi des Champs-Élysées where he finally got a chance in Europe to do what he wanted to do at MGM in America. He certainly shows signs of his physical strain from the marriage break up as well as the trials of working at MGM. Look forward to seeing it with people who know nothing about this and are there just to watch the movie. Too many have their minds poisoned by what they have read.

I think both Langdon and Keaton would have done fine if left to themselves to do what they knew best. Ditto Laurel and Hardy at Fox.

12:52 PM  
Blogger John McElwee said...

I have that Keaton DVD, per this Greenbriar piece from 2009:

Agreed that Keaton, L&H et al would have done better had they left to their own creative devices, but still ... everything they did, even under compromised circumstances, fascinates me.

On the Langdon, topic, I'd mention a recent book his son wrote, "Nothing On A Stage Is Permanent," which is filled with family photos, a lot of color imagery, and revealing text. Highly recommended!

1:26 PM  
Blogger Dave K said...

Love it! Well, what if Capra DID have Arthur Ripley's career instead his own? Would he have directed THUNDER ROAD as his come back film instead of HOLE IN THE HEAD? Actually, not a bad trade up to my way of thinking. Personally, I've never begrudged Capra's twilight-years-last-laugh memoir. Very entertaining, if not really credible. Okay, it's a little mean spirited too, but it did garner some late in life recognition that he had, let's face it, kinda screwed himself out of with the same ego antics that got him that name above the title in the first place. Besides, he did accurately predict the film he would be remembered for back when it was overlooked and largely forgotten by historians.

1:43 PM  
Blogger lmshah said...

Well, it would have been interesting if Frank Capra had started the UCLA Film School, considering that film school also propagated a lot of Directors who seem to need their names above the title whether they deserved it or not, and I'm actually denigrating neither Capra or Ripley in my comment, Ripley was an interesting and original comedy creator, who probably had a greater hand in making Harry Langdon's character work in film than Capra did, and more readily shared Langdon's dark side in comedy, and however much I find Capra's dissing of Langdon inexcusable, he still made four of five of my favorite movies, but I do indeed begrudge the harm he did to Harry Langdon, even if it may be more the fault of so many lazy film historians and buffs who passed on and so easily wanted to believe this or so much other foofaraw and falderal that gets spread as fact.


5:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Richard, since no one can prove a negative, and nobody survives who was in the screening room with he, Ripley and F. Richard Jones, it's possible Capra coined the phrase "Little Elf" to describe Langdon. But I submit there's enough circumstantial evidence to render it highly unlikely:

1) In countless Sennett press releases published in the trades and newspapers of the day, not once does the term appear as a Langdon descriptor.
2) It doesn't show up in studio-issued synopses for Langdon's films, even ones co-authored by Capra.
3) Capra doesn't use the phrase in the James Agee article, nor in any interviews prior to his autobiography in which he discusses working with Langdon.
4) From his first film to his last, there are reviews quoted throughout "The Name Above the Title," so Capra certainly had collected all the glowing notices for "The Strong Man" and would have referenced them.

Whatever one thinks about his ego, Capra was nothing if not a terrific storyteller, and the story he wanted to tell about Langdon was of a comedian who compared himself to Chaplin to his ultimate detriment, complete with a moral: "If only he'd listened to me, he'd have remained great." To make it work, Capra needed to "prove" he'd created the character, and if he could keep the spectre of Chaplin in the forefront, so much the better (modern readers probably didn't remember Langdon anyway). Charlie Chaplin was the Little Tramp. What was Harry Langdon?

I believe Capra got the tag he needed when he came across Cohen's review in his scrapbook.


10:01 AM  
Blogger b piper said...

The boxing match in THE FIGHTING PARSON certainly proves Langdon could handle broad physical comedy. It is hilarious.

12:50 PM  
Blogger lmshah said...

Michael, once again, it matters not who invented the term, it was Capra's take on Langdon's character, and the words "Little Elf" do not accurately describe the character. On pretty much everything else we agree, Capra was indeed a great story teller, unfortunately that also made him a great liar.


2:14 PM  
Blogger Reg Hartt said...

Took a look at that past post. Buster sure looks haggard in the picture you used. My copy is nice and does include the overture. Agree with everything you wrote.

5:19 PM  
Blogger Kevin K. said...

John, thanks so much for the shoutout, as the kids say. Your site is invaluable to us movie fans.

And 28 comments! Harry Langdon has joined Laurel & Hardy, the Marx Brothers, and Abbott & Costello in Greenbriar's most talked-about topics. I think he'd be proud -- while Frank Capra would still be complaining.

9:24 PM  
Blogger CanadianKen said...

Thanks so much for the welcome and beautifully articulated appreciation of Mr. Langdon. It's inspired me to re-explore my Langdon DVD collection and I've been happily immersed for the last couple of days. I'm that rare animal, a silent movie fan who's never been that responsive to the famous silent comedians. Except for Harry Langdon. I was fascinated from the first time I saw him - and subsequent exposure has only deepened my affection and admiration. Has indecision ever been conveyed with such genius? Observers often describe his comic persona as babylike. But, oh what a complex baby! Simultaneously innocent and devious. Oblivious to how the world works, yet ever so fascinating in the ways he negotiates his way through it. At his best,I find him both hilarious and profound. And Harry Langdon is very often at his best.

2:48 PM  

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