So You Want to Be Popular (1949) Poster

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Funny McDoakes
Michael_Elliott31 March 2010
So You Want to Be Polular (1949)

*** (out of 4)

As narrator Art Gilmore says, Joe McDoakes was born unpopular and slowly dug lower as life went on. After being looked over at a party, Joe decides to try and get a new personality so that he will be popular but he ends up getting some bad tips from Homer (Clifton Young). This here is another winning entry in the long-running series as we have some nice jokes and fine performances. The best thing about this movie is how natural all the laughs are because McDoakes is just stupid enough to do whatever Homer tells him. The highlight is a scene where Homer tells him people like to see a smiling face so Joe walks in on his boss not knowing what bad news is awaiting and ends up making a fool of himself. Another funny sequence happens at the start when everyone is switching dance partners but purposely staying away from Joe. O'Hanlon and Young have wonderful timing and work well off one another and this here is reason enough to check this one out.
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It's easy....just become extremely violent!!
MartinHafer15 October 2017
Warning: Spoilers
As is common in a Joe McDoakes comedy, Joe's 'friend', Homer, is a total jerk...and dispenses lots of worthless advice. In this case, Joe is tired of being unpopular and having folks walk all over him, so he plans on calling a business specializing in correcting these sorts of things. But Homer insists HE can help Joe and, as usual, most of the advice is crap. However, when Joe figures out how to solve his problems with rampant violence, he learns that this is how to become popular!

Despite an insane message that no one should EVER take to heart, this is a reasonably funny and entertaining short film. Not among the best but significantly better than many of the films immediately preceding it...and hopefully a sign that the series would be improving.
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Worldly Stage Fright
redryan649 February 2016
Warning: Spoilers
WITH THE RELEASE of this episode, the MC DOAKES Production team displayed their great skills to the world. As in the other, previous installments, they chose some human frailty and zoomed in on it , big time.

IN THIS INSTANCE, it is a sort of self-inflicted inner shyness and fear of failure which keeps our boy, Joe on the sidelines of life. Rather than being in the game, his self consciousness gets in the way of his being successful with the ladies, in business and as a man.

FOLLOWING HIS PREOCCUPATION with various cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, and a desperate attempt to enroll in some personality building program that was advertised in the newspaper, friend Homer (Neil Young) intervenes. His tutoring, though not requested, seems to be working until everything blows up.

NEITHER HIS STANDING with the gentler sex nor his attempted procurement of financial boosting (asking the boss for a raise) work. Finally Joe blows up and in his anger gains the respect of others, as well as that of his inner self.

ONCE AGAIN, WITHOUT totally giving up the whole story, let's again state that they really came up with what could be described as a model or prototype for all other comedy shorts.

WE ARE ESPECIALLY fond of the all important windup. Sitting before a baby grand piano, all decked out in tux, top hat and tails, with a pack of his now fans watching; Joe looks to us (camera) and says:

"Now, if I could only play!"

ROLL MUSICAL THEME, fade to black............
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