The three periods are the Stone Age, the pompous days of Rome, and the modern. The three parallel stories are held together by a brief foreword explaining that, although customs and times change, lovemaking and loving are always the same.
First we have the young lover of the Stone Age up to a certain point in his courtship; then the Roman dandy up to the same point; and finally the modern swain in a like cross section of his love affair.
In all three cases the situation is about the same – a humble, but faithful lover (Buster Keaton) struggling for his lady fair against the unscrupulous unworthy adventurer (Wallace Beery) and in his efforts stumbling into all sorts of scrapes.
Some of the settings are rather pretentious, particularly in the Roman episodes, and the stories are worked out with the most ingenious incidents.
There’s a lot of rich fun also in the Stone Age incident of The Boy dictating to a stone age stenographer.
The modern instance where the hero pursues his sweetheart into an up-to-date cabaret is a mine of knockabout comedy and the wedding scene is packed with solid laughs.