Born this day in 1887, Leonard "Chico" Marx would be 123 years old today!
When I first saw the Marx Brothers, I was very young...maybe 10 or 12 or so, and the pantomimic clown character of Harpo was my favorite. Then as I grew into young manhood, Groucho was my favorite, his acerbic wit and fast talking was perfect idolatry for any adolescent mind (though I was in my twenties) to aspire to. As I grow older, I like Chico the best.
Chico (pronounced "Chick-Oh") is sheer joy to watch. As big a smart-ass as Groucho, but without the condescension to his victims...or I should say outward condescension. I believe hi con man character knows exactly what he's doing when he confuses his prey with his faux Italian double-speak, but he does it with such an innocent demeanor, they just can't have the disdain for him they must Groucho. He brings Harpo's playfulness to his confidence games.
I could spout on and on about the attributes of the Marx's and why it's good for you to watch them. Over and over and over. But there are much deeper scholars of the Marx's to do that.
The best advice I can give, is just those doctors orders I just mentioned. Watch them.
Over and over and over and over.
They never stop being funny.
Chico and Harpo at their best:
They're at their best when they're effin' with the guys who think they're bad:
I enjoy Chico at the piano more than I do Harpo at the harp. Not an overly trained musician, Chico shows he DOES know his chops and has fun with it: