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Introduction to Abbott and Costello

Introduction to Abbott and Costello, one of the greatest comedy teams of all time

Abbott & Costello Abbott and Costello was a legendary comedy team, consisting of Bud Abbott, the tall, thin straight man, and Lou Costello, the short, pudgy comic. They were famous for their rapid-fire verbal exchanges, and Costello’s clownish view of the world. Like Laurel and Hardy, they were a visual contrast – the tall, debonair Bud Abbott, and the short, goofy, unkempt Lou Costello. In fact, when they were hired by Universal Studios, the studio was thinking of them as a more up-to-date version of Laurel and Hardy.

Abbott and Costello initially teamed up in 1931 when Bud Abbott was working at a Brooklyn theater, and Lou Costello asked him to fill in for his act’s straight man, who had taken ill. Throughout the 1930’s Abbott and Costello built and polished their act in vaudeville and burlesque theaters, using well-known vaudeville routines. Read More…

The Best of Abbott and Costello volume 4

Buy from Amazon.com Simply put, a collection of the Abbott and Costello films, starring Bud Abbott and the con-man straight man, partner to his pal, the comedian Lou Costello.  The DVD includes the 6 films (click the titles for individual reviews): Read More…

Comin’ Round the Mountain

Comin’ Round the Mountain, starring Abbott and Costello

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COMIN' ROUND THE MOUNTAIN, from left: Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, [aka Abbott and Costello], 1951
Imagine Abbott and Costello in the midst of the legendary mountain feud of the Hatfields and the McCoys, and you have Comin’ Round the Mountain. It’s a very funny film, with Lou Costello as the ‘long-lost’ grandson of Squeezebox McCoy, whose concertina holds the key to a hidden treasure. Lou’s return to the hills of Kentucky re-ignites the long-dormant feud. Read More…

Abbott and Costello in the Foreign Legion

Abbott and Costello in the Foreign Legion (1950) starring Bud Abbott, Lou Costello

Buy from Amazon.com Abbott and Costello in the Foreign Legion - Bud Abbott - Lou Costello

In Abbott and Costello in the Foreign Legion Bud Jones (Bud Abbott) and Lou Hotchkiss (Lou Costello) are wrestling promoters whose star attraction, Abdullah, skips town to return to his home in Arabia. While scouring the desert in search of Abdullah, Bud and and Lou inadvertently purchase slave girl Nicole Dupre, and with equal inadvertence join the Foreign Legion. In their own bumbling, inept fashion, our heroes manage to foil a desert uprising fomented by Shiek Hamud El Khalid and traitorous Legion Sergeant Axmann (Walter Slezak). Read More…

Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, (1953) starring Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Boris Karloff

Buy from Amazon.com Abbott and Costello Meet Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is considered by many Abbott and Costello fans to be one of their worst efforts.  Although it has many very funny moments, it can be safely said that it doesn’t have nearly enough of them. Read More…

The Noose Hangs High

The Noose Hangs High (1948) starring Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Cathy Downs, Leon Errol

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Synopsis of The Noose Hangs High

The Noose Hangs High - Bud Abbott and Lou Costello - DVD cover

Bud Abbott and Lou Costello are working for the Speedy Service window washing company when Ted Higgins (Bud Abbott) and Tommy Hinchcliffe (Lou Costello) work for the Speedy Service Window Washing Company. They run into a bookie named Nick Craig (Joseph Calleia), who, after mistaking them for employees of the Speedy Messenger Service, sends them to Mr. Stewart’s (Ben Weldon) office to collect $50,000 owed to him. But Stewart has plans of his own: he hires two thugs to rob Ted and Tommy of the money he has just paid. Tommy flees from the robbers and takes refuge in a room with a gaggle of women who are mailing face powder samples. He hides the money in an envelope and addresses it to Craig, but it is accidentally switched with an envelope containing a powder sample. Ted and Tommy return to Craig’s office and explain what happened; they assure him that the cash will arrive in the mail the next day. When face powder (instead of cash) arrives in the mail, an irate Craig gives Ted and Tommy 24 hours to return his money. The boys attempt to contact everyone on the mailing list until they finally locate the recipient, Carol (Cathy Downs), who informs them that she spent most of the money Read More…

Lou Costello plays it straight

originally published in TV Guide (November 1-7, 1958)

LOU COSTELLO PLAYS IT STRAIGHT
Veteran Comic Goes Dramatic in Television Western
By Dan Jenkins

TV Guide - Lou Costello plays it straightLou Costello, the short, rotund , butt-end of one of the entertainment world’s longest running (22 years) comedy teams, Is working as a single these days and gratifying the hidden desire of every baggy-pants comic— he is playing it straight. Read More…

Is Lou Costello on the level?

Originally published in Radio and Television Mirror, July 1948

Is Lou Costello on the level?
Is Lou’s Foundation run from the heart… or for the publicity?
The answer is in the facts, and here they are Read More…

The Navy Gets a Laugh Ration

Movie Life 
(June 1943)

The Navy Gets a Laugh Ration

The Navy gets a Laugh RationFRESH LITTLE Costello showed no more respect for sick sailors than he did for gold braid. “Git up outa dere!” he told boys. They loved it.VOTED KINGS of the box-office for 1942, Bud Abbott and Lou Costello prove themselves Princes of Good Fellows by clowning till it hurt. Costello went into the hospital after seven weeks. Read More…

The Care and Feeding of Abbott & Costello

Lou Costello - breaking through a drum in Rio RitaBud Abbott - breaking through a drum in Rio RitaOriginally published in “Twenty Complete Stories – New Players and Old Hollywood”
June 1942

The Care and Feeding of Abbott & Costello

Life is smooth for Abbott and Costello. Professionally they’re sitting on top of the world and domestically they’re in the hands of two super-efficient housewives – Mrs. Abbott and Mrs. Lou Costello.

It’s no slander against Betty Abbott and Ann Costello to classify them as the second-best managers in their respective households; merely an acknowledgment of the superior skill of their mates. They don’t have to try.

Costello, the small soprano apple dumpling of the comedy team, the guy who can’t get anything right on the screen of over the microphone, is a managerial genius in private life. Read More…

Fred Allen’s Heirs: Costello and Abbott Given Summer Spot

Fred Allen’s Heirs: Costello and Abbott Given Summer Spot (originally published in Newsweek – July 1, 1940)

Lou Costello and Bud Abbott in Newsweek 1940With Fred Allen leaving the air this week. * Ipana-Sal Hepatica decided to cut its NBC Red network time from an hour to a half hour (still starting at 9 o’clock EDT Wednesdays) and two months ago began looking for breezy talent to fill the breach for the summer. What they got was a popular pair of wacky vaudevillians, Bud Abbott and Lou Costello. Read More…