Omigawd, this has been so tough......I'm sure glad that "xraffle" posted his vote before I attempted to do same, simply because I'm having the same basic problem that HE was having -- Keeping my personal feelings out of it, and voting the way the voting SHOULD go -- Pertaining to the arguments and rebuttals as they wqere presented. OK, here goes........
"Stooged And Confused" made an EXCELLENT point in his rebuttal in regards to the argument as to whether the original stooges would be "remembered" (Another incredibly adept choice of words by Shemps#1, who always keeps what I call "a sharpened lack of clarity" when he carefully words his debate topics) -- When Curly had to leave the act, Shemp picked the ball back up, and kept the machine running as the finely-tuned comedy act that they were. I couldn't agree more, and i'll also take this one step farther, in the sense that, since my joining this fan board, even I have come to appreciate Shemp Howard's overall body of work even more than I have in the past. Shemp was the total pro, and easily got the job done.
Then comes "Giff Me Dat Fill-Em." Fill-em's answer to my question to him was INCREDIBLE, when it touched on what he called "Curly's Legacy." To quote Fill-em, " It was partly due to the high level of popularity Curly was responsible for that Shemp’s return to the team was as seamless as it was, as far as the public may have viewed the transition. Had he never left, and as such there would be no wonderful Curly-isms and the like, it would have become what we see on the screen now, with, as I mentioned before, Moe, Larry and Shemp as a very good comedy team that worked well together. But there are contemporaries of Moe, Larry and Shemp with those same credentials - and being good together or cohesive may not be enough to lodge the MLS team firmly in the public’s memory. Curly was the rocket ship that thrust the Stooges into high memorableness, and the Stooges with Shemp is the locomotive that does its job day after day, in a reliable and dependable pattern.
I liken this to the New England Patriots vs. the rest of the current NFL. Sure, people always REMEMBER the other 31 franchises, but when the Patriots had all their people in the right places, players, coaching staff, management, they made things HAPPEN. 3 rings, and a legacy that will be remembered by all fans of the NFL for a LOOOONG time. I love the Shemp shorts, and they were damned good, both pre-and-post Curly, but Jerome 'Curly' Howard was Brady, Belichick, Moss and the rest of the Pats' hierarchy, all rolled into one. The timing of the change, and the following influx of the writers' talents, coupled with this dynamo of film comedy that WAS Curly Howard, thrusted The Three Stooges into comedic film history. I agree, Fill-em -- Curly was the straw that stirred the drink. His appearance and performance helped make history, elevating the level to a point that the Shemp Howard Stooges may not have ever reached. When I sat down and asked myself, "could the Shemp-Moe-Larry Stooges have garnered the same historical support" that catapulted them into the same film-making stratosphere, honestly, I gotta say 'no.'
My vote goes to Giff-Me-Dat-Fill-Em.
Everybody does 'remember' all 32 NFL teams, and that they do exist, but there's remembering, and then, there's REMEMBERING. The Pats will always be remembered for their run, and so will the Stooges, thanks to the Tom Brady of comedy, Jerome 'Curly' Howard.
S&C, I know this is gonna sound hollow, but I do mean it. You didn't lose. Fill-em won. Excellent job, both of you. Thanks to all those who let me participate.....