GenreComedy, Family, Short Duration CountryUnited States
WriterH.M. Walker (dialogue) Release dateMarch 26, 1932 (1932-03-26) Music directorMarvin Hatley, Leroy Shield CastGeorge McFarland, Dorothy DeBorba, Sherwood Bailey Similar moviesOur Gang movies
Baby spanky mcfarland 1931 32
Spanky is a 1932 Our Gang short comedy film directed by Robert F. McGowan. It was the 113th (25th talking episode) Our Gang short that was released. The film was based on Our Gang co-star George "Spanky" McFarland.
Although this is a remake of a 1920s silent Our Gang episode called Uncle Tom's Uncle, the main character is Spanky. Early scenes of this film were part of Spanky's screen test taken back in April 1931 during his first visit to Hal Roach Studios. It included him bug hunting. Meanwhile, his brother Breezy Brisbane and the rest of the gang are putting on a play of Uncle Tom's Cabin. Brisbane is forced to supervise Spanky. Also, Spanky's dad refuses to spend money in order to keep the house clean though he has tons of it hidden in a closet.
Spanky disrupts the play the whole time and the play itself is a flop and the kids that came to watch it ruin the play even more by throwing rotten tomatoes and garbage at the gang as they are trying to put the show on. Spanky also finds his dad's money and begins throwing it out the window. The kids all run out and try to steal the money and Spanky's dad arrives and throws the kids out forcing them to give back the money. The gang helps pick up the money and the father promises to put the money in the bank and spend more on mom and the kids.
Coincidentally, Bobby Mallon appeared in both Spanky and Uncle Tom's Uncle and was the only actor to do so.
On the syndicated television print, 12 minutes of this short, which are the scenes of Uncle Tom's Cabin were edited out in 1971 making the film only nine minutes long. This was due to material deemed racially insensitive toward African Americans. Spanky has been released on VHS and DVD in unedited form.