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Police Rookies

Lou Costello pulling weights in "Police Rookies"

Police RookiesThe Abbott and Costello Show season 1

Police Rookies – Abbott and Costello plan to enroll in the police academy, and get some pointers from Mike over dinner. Then Professor Melonhead tries to whip them into shape at the police gym, before Lou hits the firing range and “blows up the joint.”

Police Rookies – Act I

Mike the Cop (Gordon Jones) take a pie plate to the head in "Police Rookie"

Mike is having dinner with Bud Abbott and Lou Costello. He’s trying to help Lou get ready for the tests at the police rookie school, with limited success. Lou accidentally stabs him in the hand with a fork, and pours hot coffee over his hand! That’s before Bingo the Chimp hits him in the head with a pie plate — twice. And then, Sid Fields take one as well after giving them 24 hours to get Bingo out of the boardinghouse!

Then it’s bath time for Bingo. Since Lou’s fighting with Bingo about who takes their bath first, Bud takes him into the bathroom. “And use the soap. Don’t be like Costello.” While Bingo’s in the bathtub, Lou makes the mistake of asking Bud for some simple questions, to prepare for the upcoming exams.

Bud Abbott: Suppose you walked over there, and bored a hole in that wall.
All right. Go over there and bore a hole in that wall.
Bud Abbott: Why? Why should you go over there and bore a hole in that wall?

Bud Abbott and Lou Costello do their mustard routine in The Abbott and Costello Show episode, Police Rookies

They then segue into their classic hot dog and mustard sketch. And then, it’s more along the same lines, with Lou having to choose between eating beans or a steak. And both choices are wrong! Then, a fictional visit to the train depot. Where’s Lou going? To his home town of Patterson, New Jersey. Then, they go to check on Bingo. Who’s used all of Lou’s bubble bath!

Police Rookies – Act II

After their comedy for the audience, the scene shifts to Police Rookie School. With Professor Melonhead (Sid Fields), Judo expert. He promptly sends Bud and Lou to do fifty chin ups. Bud’s struggling, but Lou has no problem. Why? He’s standing on a stool! Until Bud kicks it away …. Then, Professor Melonhead puts Lou in a reducing machine for a moment. But even after Lou’s out of the machine, he keeps vibrating! But his pal Bud helps him stop. Then, it’s time for the medicine ball. After clowning around with that, Lou “demonstrates” how to juggle six Indian clubs.

And then, it’s time for Jiu Jitsu. After Lou decides to be funny, and kicks the judo instructor in the behind, he’s now the volunteer! And the judo instructor throws Lou around effortlessly, while Bud and Professor Melonhead watch and react.

Next, it’s time for their qualifying test — strength. Lou is supposed to grab the handles, and gradually pull the weights up. Which he cannot do. Professor Melonhead is demonstrating the correct way, when the phone rings. And he has Lou hold onto the handles, while he answers the phone. Which catapults Lou through the wall, and into the adjoining room! Which happens to be the firing range …

And police officers are firing at targets, which Lou tries to hide behind. Thankfully, Mike the Cop is there. He pulls Lou to safety. And Lou decides to demonstrate what a good shot he is, by shooting a clay pipe out of Mike’s mouth. Which Lou keeps shortening …. And then, he notices the grenades! Mike tries to teach him about how the police might use it, when a police sergeant comes in. And Lou decides to clown around with a live grenade! Which eventually goes off, ending the episode. Bud and Lou come onstage, to address the children watching. They reinforce that they’ve only been having fun, and that the kids should run to the police, not away from them, if they’re in trouble.

Jokes – Police Rookies Act I

Lou Costello: I was in the fourth grade seven years.
Bud Abbott: Fourth grade seven years?
Lou Costello: I was in the fourth grade seven years, yeah.
Bud Abbott: How come you never went to the fifth grade?
Lou Costello: I didn’t want to pass my father up.

Mike the Cop: Differentiate between a misdemeanor and a felony. Can you explain that?
Lou Costello: I can’t even say it.

Mike the Cop: Costello, what are you going to do with that chimp?
Lou Costello: I’m gonna smarten him up so he can pass the police examination.
Mike the Cop: Well, he’d do a lot better than you’ll ever do!

Bud Abbott: Do you know what that cow gives?
Lou Costello: Milk.
Bud Abbott: That cow gives milk.
Lou Costello: She don’t give it. You gotta take it away from her.

Jokes – Police Rookies Act II

Lou Costello: I went to public school for 22 years.
Bud Abbott: 22 years!
Lou Costello: Certainly.
Bud Abbott: How’d you get out?
Lou Costello: Had to burn the schoolhouse down.

Lou Costello: I used to play with a medicine ball.
Professor Melonhead: Play with it? It looks like you swallowed one.

Cast of characters


  • Abbott and Costello were keenly aware that much of their audience was children. Not wanting to leave kids with a bad impression of cops because of the slapstick and horseplay that had occurred during the show between the pair and the police, at the end of the show they came out from behind the curtain and Costello gave a little speech directed at the kids who were watching. He told them that what they had just seen was all in fun, that policemen were there to help and protect kids, and that if they were ever in trouble they should never run away from policemen but go to them and the police would help them in any way they could.
  • Also known as “Police Rookie School.”
  • Story by Sid Fields.

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