Abbott and Costello - Research Article from St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 7 pages of information about Abbott and Costello.
This section contains 1,825 words
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One of the most popular comedy teams in movie history, Bud Abbott (1895-1974) and Lou Costello (1906-1959) began in burlesque and ended on television. Along the way, they sold millions of tickets (and war bonds), almost single-handedly saved Universal Pictures from bankruptcy, and made a legendary catch-phrase out of three little words: "Who's on first?" Straight man Abbott was the tall, slim, sometimes acerbic con artist; Costello was the short, pudgy, childlike patsy. Their unpretentious brand of knockabout comedy was the perfect tonic for a war-weary home front in the early 1940s. Though carefully crafted and perfected on the stage, their precision-timed patter routines allowed room for inspired bits of improvisation. Thanks to Abbott and Costello's films and TV shows, a wealth of classic burlesque sketches and slapstick tomfoolery has been preserved, delighting audiences of all ages and influencing new generations of comedians.

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This section contains 1,825 words
(approx. 7 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Abbott and Costello Encyclopedia Article
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Abbott and Costello from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.