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5

I think the joke is that he is presumed not to be able to read Hebrew, so this signifies that he is only pretending to read the newspaper. It could have been any other language, but one which uses a different alphabet makes it more obvious, and it may be that at the time the only choices most Americans would recognize would be Hebrew and possibly Russian, ...


5

Well he apparently did not do it naturally. According to this Laurel and Hardy website, it was done using strings and creative filming. Here is an extract that explains it: One surefire gag in Hal Roach shorts was ear-wiggling. Only a few months before, the studio built an entire Our Gang comedy around this notion; Messrs. Beanie Walker and Bob McGowan ...


5

This is not a hebrew newspaper but a yiddish newspaper "Yiddishe Velt", (Yiddish World). Yiddish can be written in either hebrew or latin characters. In the first half of the 20th Century there were many yiddish newspapers in the USA catering to the large jewish immigrant community. There was also a very active yiddish film industry in the USA and Europe. ...


4

It was typical at the time to film movies in more than one language. Blotto was simultaneously filmed in French and Spanish. Anita Garvin, who plays Stan's wife, is replaced by Spanish and French actresses in those versions of the film. Perhaps the choice of newspaper was an attempt to find a visual joke that would work in more than one country. This ...


1

The suggestion is that his wife is Jewish. There is an old stereotype of Jewish wives being, well, bitchy.


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