The Three Stooges were a classic comedy team, whose best known incarnation consisted of Moe Howard, Curly Howard, and Larry Fine, and had their roots in vaudeville as "stooges" to Ted Healy. They accompanied Healy to Hollywood but soon broke out on their own, appearing in countless Columbia film shorts emphasizing slapstick, physical violence, and pie-throwing.
Moe and Larry were the only constants, with the third stooge played variously by Curly Howard (1932-1946), Shemp Howard (in vaudeville, one 1930 film appearance, and up until 1932 and replacing Curly from 1946 to 1955), Joe Besser (1956-1958), and finally Curly Joe DeRita (1959-1975, for later television and film appearances). The classic trio of Moe, Larry, and Curly was frequently referenced on Muppet Babies, usually through stock footage.
- In the first season Muppet Babies episode "Good Clean Fun," Baby Fozzie engages in a whipped cream pie fight with the Stooges, using footage from the short Slippery Silks (1936).
- Beginning in the second season of Muppet Babies, random clips from the feature film The Three Stooges Meet Hercules (1962) were frequently used as stock footage, usually for chariot scenes.
- In the fourth season episode "Beach Blanket Babies," Baby Fozzie confronts his fear of crocodiles by imagining Three Stooges-Style crocodiles as his swimming instructors: Moe, Larry, and Crocodiley.
- The fourth season episode "Beauty and the Schnoz" includes footage from the short Pop Goes the Easel (1935), illustrating Skeeter's claim that Scooter's artwork looks like a monkey painted it.
- In the Play-Along Video, Neat Stuff To Know & To Do, a rabbit in the "Ewe-Can-Do-It" sketch is heard making noises made by Curly Howard in the various short films.
- A 1981 episode of Sesame Street features a group of birds called the "Canary Brothers", two of which are named Curly and Moe.
- In the recurring series of Muppet Time sketches, "The Three Silly Bears," the third bear, Ted, is portrayed as the Curly Howard of the trio, using many of his well known catchphrases and sounds.
- In a 1998 episode of Sesame Street, a mother bird is seen with two baby birds named Curly and Moe.
- In a 2000 episode, Telly chooses what names to give to Chuckie Sue's newborn babies, suggesting Chuckie, Curly, Moe, and Larry for male names.
- In episode 201 of Muppets Tonight, Dr. Phil van Neuter puts a threat on his and Mulch's plans to visit a Three Stooges convention.