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Dutiful but Dumb is the 54th short subject starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges. The trio made a total of 190 shorts for Columbia Pictures between 1934 and 1959.


The Stooges are "Click, Clack and Cluck", paparazzi-like photographers working for Whack Magazine ("If it's a good picture, it's out of Whack!") who continue to grate at their weary boss (Vernon Dent). To get them out of his hair, he sends them to Vulgaria (an obvious parody of Bulgaria) for their next job, knowing full well that taking pictures in Vulgaria is against the law, leading to execution. The inept trio are caught once they set foot on Vulgarian soil. As the firing squad is setting up, Curly requests one last smoke, leading to him pulling out a cigar the length of a hero sandwich. The wait puts everyone to sleep, and enables the boys to escape. As they try to avoid their captors, they end up in a local cafe, in which Curly pits his wits against a strong drink, and then a defiant oyster in his stew. When the oyster works Curly's last nerve he pulls out his gun and fires at it repeatedly. This gets the attention of the guards who promptly capture the Stooges and carry them off, upside down, on the bayonets of their guns.


  • The title is a play on "beautiful but dumb."
  • An adaptation of the oyster soup scene is featured in the The Three Stooges video game.
  • The oyster soup gag was repeated by Moe in Shivering Sherlocks and by Larry in 1954's Income Tax Sappy. The gag also appears in an Abbott and Costello film, Here Come the Co-Eds.


  • Solomon, Jon (2002). The Complete Three Stooges: The Official Filmography and Three Stooges Companion. Comedy III Productions, Inc. pp. 193. ISBN 0971186804.