A bitter dandy wants revenge against a rival (Harry "Snub" Pollard) who won the heart of the girl, & married her, in the silent comedy short Grab the Ghost (1911).
The new couple has a wedding reception at their new home, a mansion recently purchased by the groom. A kid helping set up the reception needs to get a pet parrot out of the way, & so puts the caged bird underneath a table behind the dangling tablecloth.
The bitter rival starts frightening Snub with stories of how the mansion he unfortunately purchased is notorious for being haunted, & Snub is visibly worried. "The last tenant shot himself with a saxaphone," says the pokerfaced kidder, & the black kid who hid the parrot looks worried too.
The word "Help!" appears on the screen under the table, so we know the parrot has started its bit. Then it squawks, "Murder!"
Snub can barely keep his tophat on. The kidder tells the story of the murder, & it is reenacted over his shoulder by two ghostly figures of everyone's imagination. Snub's hat is twirling on his head.
"Police!" cries the parrot, & the kid who hid the parrot & should've known all about it leaps out the window in terror. Snub clutches his heart & his ears begin to waggle like mad as he spots a scary bearded man gazing in at the window.
Terror of "the ghosts playing poker on the roof" goes through the house infecting the servants, all black, so we can get a second "ske'rt darky" stereotype leaping out a window.
Snub grabs his new bride & wants to get out the house at once, but she knows he's by nature a hysteric & there are no ghosts. She accidentally tosses him down the staircase then tries to drag him back to the reception. He spots a cat with flypaper stuck on its foot & seems to think it's a ghost.
Then the old man who looks like a ghost shows up & the bride runs away without Snub noticing. The weird old guy sits down beside Snub for another obvious gag to play out.
Irrationalities abound as his bride puts a white cloth over her head (the gods know why, she seems to think she's hiding) & accidentally scares her husband, who goes & leaps into bed to hide under the sheets only to discover he's in bed with the maid though it isn't nighttime & there's a reception so why'd she go to bed?
Then a huge number of policemen show up though nobody called them, & they chase Snub around though there's no earthly reason to arrest him. In the end the weird old man is unmasked as the bitter rival in disguise. Quite a bad film, full of familiar gags badly played.
copyright © by Paghat the Ratgirl