Production Information
Title: Punchy CowpunchersStudio: ColumbiaShort Number: 120
Release Date: January 5, 1950
Running Time: 15:32


“I’ll take a milkshake… with sour milk!”

Short Take

It is the old west and the Dillon clan are making life miserable for a small Western town. Sweetheart Nell (Christine McIntyre) and her dashing but dimwitted boyfriend Elmer (Jacques O’Mahoney) rushes off to find help. Meanwhile, cavalrymen the Stooges are making life miserable for superior, Sergeant Mullins (Dick Wessel). Mullins tries to whip the boys into shape, but his plan backfire and has a run-in with his superior, Captain Daley (Emil Sitka). Daley informs Mullins about the Dillion clan’s evildoings and needs some men to run them out of town. Mullins does not miss a beat and volunteers the unsuspecting Stooges.

The trio is made up to look like tough desperadoes and happen upon the town saloon. They take jobs as waiters and do their best to spy on Dillion (Kenneth MacDonald) and his hombres without being discovered (complete with fake mustaches) However, Moe’s mustache flies off his face, right onto Dillion’s nose. The gang tie up Moe and Larry and manage to corner Shemp into a safe.

As this is going on, Elmer is stumbling his way to the door of United States Cavalry, who are temporarily unavailable, it being payday and all (“Boys will be boys,” shrugs Cavalry colonel Vernon Dent). Disillusioned, Elmer returns to rescue his Nell, who is busy knocking every cowboy who enters her room out cold. Eventually, The Stooges emerge victoriously.

Cast & Crew

Directed byEdward Bernds
Produced byHugh McCollum
Written byEdward Bernds
StarringMoe Howard
Larry Fine
Shemp Howard
Christine McIntyre
Jacques O’Mahoney
Kenneth MacDonald
Vernon Dent
Emil Sitka
Dick Wessel
John Cason
Heinie Conklin
George Chesebro
Ted Mapes
Stanley Price
Joe Palma
CinematographyVincent J. Farrar
Edited byHenry DeMond

Punchy Cowpunchers Trivia

  • Punchy Cowpunchers is one of the few entries in The Stooge canon to feature an extensive musical soundtrack.
  • The short features all four of the core supporting actors who appeared in many of the Stooge shorts: Christine McIntyre, Kenneth MacDonald, Vernon Dent and Emil Sitka.
  • The large cast acts out three simultaneous tales with equine operatic accompaniment.
  • On The Three Stooges Collection Volume 6 DVD there is an error on the box billing the short under 1949.
  • Listen carefully as the scene with “bartender” Shemp mixing a drink for Blackie Whiteford opens. Shemp is telling him the story of Goldilocks & the Three Bears.

Production Notes

  • The film was shot at the Columbia Ranch from February 7 to February 10, 1949.