Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Get to Know Your Man-Child, Part 3: The Man-Child Enjoys Riding a Bicycle

The man-child is inseparable from his bicycle, which stands as an emblem of boyhood freedom.

Jacques Tati expressed the emblematic value of the bicycle in his 1949 comedy feature Jour de Fete (Big Day).  Tati's prized bicycle was a 1911 Peugeot model.

Tati stuck to bicycle transportation when he changed to his "Monsieur Hulot" persona.

Tati in Jour de Fete
Tatit in Mon Oncle (1958)
Later, elements of Tati's Big Day could be found in Pee Wee's Big Adventure (1985). . .


and Mr. Bean's Holiday (2007).


British music hall Harry Champion liked to clown around on a bicycle.

Another music hall comedian, Edmund Payne, was known to be a bicycle enthusiast.

Comedians will sometimes obtain laughs with a small bicycle.

Phil Baker
Jack Lipson and Eddie Nelson in Stop and Go (1928)
Joan Davis
Louis Nye
Lupe VĂ©lez
Simon Pegg
But a comedian can also obtain laughs with a big bicycle.

Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy
Pegg, again
Buster Keaton saw great value in handlebars.

Keaton and Sybil Seely
Keaton and Cliff Edwards
Keaton and Ann Blyth
Keaton and Ford West in Sherlock Jr. (1924)
Keaton found his way around on a bicycle on other occasions.

Keaton in Our Hospitality (1923)
Keaton in In the Good Old Summertime (1949)

Jerry Lewis' "Kid" persona favored a bicycle as his means of transportation.

Jerry Lewis in Cinderfella (1960)
Jerry Lewis in The Errand Boy (1961)
The bicycle played an important role in Harry Langdon's misadventures in Tramp, Tramp, Tramp (1926) and Long Pants (1927).

Harry Langdon in Long Pants (1927)
Let us now look at other comedians on bicycles.

Jim Carrey in Dumb & Dumber (1994)
Carrey and Jeff Daniels in Dumb & Dumber (1994)
Arthur Lowe in The Rise and Rise of Michael Rimmer (1970)
Avery Schreiber
Bert Wheeler and Robert Woolsey
Bill Murray
Murray, again
Bob Hope
Hope and children
Charley Chase
Danny Kaye
Dick Van Dyke
El Brendel
Eric Idle as a beleaguered bicyclist in European Vacation (1985)
Fannie Brice, Gracie Allen and George Burns
Fred MacMurray in The Absent-Minded Professor (1961)
Gene Wilder in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)
George Burns and Gracie Allen
Harold Lloyd
Harvey Lembeck and Tom Ewell in Back At The Front (1952)
Jack Benny
Benny, again
Joe E. Brown
Brown, again
John C. Reilly and Will Ferrell in Step Brothers (2008)
Kenneth Williams and Hattie Jacques
Lou Costello and wife Anne
Martha Raye
Michael Palin
Olsen and Johnson
Sid Caesar
Steve Carell
Carell in The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005)
The Three Stooges
The Three Stooges, again
Tom Hanks in Big (1988)
W. C. Fields
Fields and bathing beauties
Fields and Baby LeRoy
Read more about the comic man-child in I Won't Grow Up!: The Comic Man-Child in Film from 1901 to the Present.

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