Cast & Crew
In this short spoof of "Old Ironsides" (1926), Charley Chase is hired by a rich family to stop their daughter from entering a beauty contest.
By coincidence, Muriel is seated at Charley's dining car table. But since he has never actually seen Muriel, he has no idea she is the quarry. The ice is broken by Charley's efforts to eat a wilting stalk of asparagus that seems to have a mind of its own, and a flirtatious relationship is off and running.
At the hotel, Charley tries to locate the mystery Muriel, but it thwarted by a bumbling hotel detective (Heinie Conklin), a playful desk clerk, and a mischievous kid with an archery set, whose arrow sends Charley tumbling from a pier into a fisherman's line. The hook relieves Charley of his swimsuit and he must rely upon the young mischief-maker for a new set of clothes. What he receives is a parcel full of shirtcollars, which Charley cleverly fashions into a hula skirt and, for the sake of modesty, a bikini top. Thusly attired, Charley attracts a crowd, is chased by a cop, is pinched by a crab, and stumbles onto the stage of the "Royal Hula Dancers." Once he evades his pursuers, Charley modifies his skimpy costume and poses as a contestant in the bathing beauty contest, at which point he is able to lay hands on the fugitive Muriel Evans. Or so he thinks.
As a publicity stunt, Young Ironsides allowed a number of real-life pageant queens to make cameo appearances in the film, including Miss Philadelphia (June Glory), Miss San Francisco (Dorothy Layton), and Miss Hollywood (a 20-year-old Paulette Goddard). Four years later, Goddard would find fame as the Gamin in Chaplin's Modern Times (1936). Chase's costar in Young Ironsides, Muriel Evans (1910-2000), went on to appear as the damsel in numerous low-budget Westerns of the 1930s, opposite the likes of Tim Holt, Tex Ritter, Buck Jones, William Boyd, and John Wayne. She retired from the industry in 1940.
The director, James Parrott, was Chase's younger brother, who directed numerous Laurel and Hardy comedies, and often acted under the name Paul Parrott. Both James and Charley relied on controlled substances to keep up with their fast-paced careers. For Charley it was alcohol and for James it was pep pills. James ultimately died from his addiction in 1939. It is believed that Charley's grief over his brother's death intensified his own drinking, and brought about a fatal heart attack in 1940.
Director: James Parrott
Producer: Hal Roach
Screenplay: H.M. Walker
Cinematography: Hap Depew
Cast: Charley Chase (Fearless), Muriel Evans (Muriel), Clarence Wilson (J. Caldwall Evans), May Wallace (Mrs. Evans), Heinie Conklin (Detective), Billy Gilbert (effeminate passenger).
by Bret Wood