Hoi Polloi

Hoi Polloi is a 1935 short subject directed by Del Lord starring American slapstick comedy team The Three Stooges (Moe Howard, Larry Fine and Curly Howard). It is the tenth entry in the series released by Columbia Pictures starring the comedians, who released 190 shorts for the studio between 1934 and 1959.


In an adaptation of the 1913 play Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw, Professor Richmond (Harry Holman), certain that environment and not heredity dictates social behavior, bets one of his peers, Professor Nichols (Robert Graves) $10,000 that he can take a common man and through environment and proper training turn him into a gentleman. Professor Richmond responds that there are always one or two exceptions to every rule, but agrees on a wager for Professor Nichols to train three common people to become gentlemen. Naturally, the Stooges, who are garbage men, are discovered and made the subjects of the wager. After many attempts to teach them proper etiquette (including a dance class punctuated by an errant bee that flies down the back of their female dance instructor), the Stooges will decide the wager by their behavior at a fancy society party given by Richmond.