Harry Langdon emerged in the mid-1920s on the American comedy scene like super nova burning startlingly bright, only to die down quickly to darkness. His cherubic little figure, dressed in a tiny, cloth hat, oversized coat, and broad, floppy shoes, arrived during a period of stagnation in the character comedies of Lloyd, Keaton, and Chaplin: Lloyd was repeating himself, Keaton was repeating Lloyd and Chaplin was inactive from 1925 to 1928. And into this breach came Langdon.
Langdon developed his character and some basic comic situations as a successful stage performer. Film producer Mack Sennett spotted him, signed him to a contract in 1923, and assigned Sennett staff members Arthur Ripley, Harry Edwards and Frank Capra to work with Langdon to translate his comic persona to film. His first film for Sennett, “Picking Peaches” (1924), showed little promise, but by the time Langdon made his final short for Sennett, “Saturday Afternoon” (1926), his character was in place.