23 January 2011 | MartinHafer
Only fair...but far better than his early Roach shorts.
In 1929-1930, Harry Langdon made a string of rather unfunny shorts for Hal Roach Studios---and this is the last of them. Later, he'd return to the studio as a gag writer and occasional supporting actor (such as with Oliver Hardy in "Zenobia") but in between he worked with studios like Warner Brothers and Universal and had lengthier stints at Columbia and Monogram. It seems that the old Harry Langdon magic of the 1920s was gone and this appeared to have a lot to do with his bouncing about from studio to studio.
In this short, Harry is the very wimpy and henpecked King. The Queen (Thelma Todd) spends much of her time bossing him and slapping him about in front of his subjects. Now not all of this is because she's just mean--he's a terrible womanizer (with Thelma as a wife?!). So, she decides to handcuff him to her so she can keep an eye on him--a plan that doesn't work particularly well.
While this is only a fair comedy, it and some of the latter ones from Roach had shown a lot of improvement. Sadly, however, as the last of these films he would not take advantage of this positive momentum.