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Even as IOU

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Curly has "borrowed" the little girl's savings - lend lease! To bet it on a 50-to-1 shot!
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Even As IOU (1942) starring the Three Stooges (Moe Howard, Larry Fine, Curly Howard), Stanley Blystone

Even as IOU – The Three Stooges (Moe, Larry, Curly) begin by selling crooked race tips, help a dispossessed mother & child, win a race & then buy a talking horse?

Curly is duped into buying Sea Basket, a “talking” horse, in “Even as IOU”.

Selling old race track tips

In a funny bit, the Three Stooges (Moe, Larry, Curly) are selling bogus racetrack tips. They have Curly to lie down in the road, so when a car stops — hopefully! — they can sell him their tip sheets. But Vernon Dent realizes that they’re for the day before yesterday! So he calls for the police, and officer Bud Jamison responds! Thankfully, the Three Stooges may not be smart, but they’re clever, and manage to evade him. They run into an “empty” lot where they find …

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Helping a dispossessed mother and daughter

The “empty” lot’s full of furniture! After some slapstick, the owners show up. A mother and her daughter have been dispossessed, and the Three Stooges’ better natures assert themselves, and they decide to help. There’s no milk for the little girl, so after some slapstick with Curly – where Moe kneels on a doll that goes “Ma-ma” when the listens to Curly’s chest! Then Curly fights with a ram, milks a goat, and brings the milk back for the little girl. Who bleats when she drinks it! Then, after a cat steals Larry’s fish, Curly cooks a “plank fish”!

At the racetrack

Curly has a brainstorm! He’ll “borrow” the little girl’s money, bet it at the racetrack on a horse at 50-to-1 odds, and double the kid’s money! As Moe says, make it 100-to-1 and triple it! But to get in without paying, they take old-fashioned ‘press’ buttons from the bathroom to pass themselves as the press. Except for Curly, who chose ‘pull’! They get in anyway. But once there, two swindlers decide to have fun with Curly. One (Stanley Blystone) is a former vaudeville ventriloquist, and he throws his voice and makes Curly think the horse is talking to him! And when the horse unexpectedly wins, they con him into buying the “talking” horse. Followed by: “I’ll never speak to you again.” Aw. But that night, Moe and Curly try to give their new horse, Seabasket, a vitamin. But the horse blows it down Curly’s throat instead! And the short ends with Curly ?!? giving birth to a talking pony!

Funny Quotes

Motorist (Vernon Dent): Just a second, these horses ran day before yesterday!
Curly: They won, didn’t they!

Curly: [to the goat he just headbutted] Now let that be a lesson to you. 

Seabasket, the Horse: I beat Filet Mignon, in the Porterhouse Stakes.

Cast of characters in Even as IOU

Additional cast


  • When Curly says “FBI loan,” he means an FHA loan, a program instituted during FDR’s “New Deal”. When he describes taking the child’s piggy bank as “only a lend-lease,” he is referring to 1941’s Lend-Lease Law, a program to help supply Great Britain with war supplies
  • The “Press, Press, Pull” gag was previously used in Three Little Beers. (1935).
  • The “ma-ma” doll gag had recently been used by Laurel and Hardy in 1940’s Saps at Sea. It would be used again in the Stooges’ 1951 short Scrambled Brains.

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