Mary's Lamb (1915)

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The satirical tone of Mary's Lamb is established from the outset with a rhyming subtitle: "Mary had a little lamb, as you can plainly note/And everywhere that Mary went, the lamb would get her goat." Though the story is ostensibly about the heroine's efforts to rid herself of her troublesome pet lamb, the star of the show is elfin character actor Richard Carle. Already well into his standard "foxy grandpa" characterization, Carle manages to solve all of Mary's problems, including her romantic difficulties with the nominal hero. The Pathe publicity people evidently hoped to promote the picture on the strength of Carle's name alone, to the extent of thoroughly ignoring the actress cast as Mary. For the record, the title character (not the lamb) was played by Marie Wayne, while Carle was felicitously teamed with another stage veteran, Jessie Ralph (best remembered as W.C. Fields' slovenly mother-in-law in 1940's The Bank Dick.