Friday, March 6, 2009

Cleaving End of a Genre

Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948)

Funny how horror—ends up as comedy
Universal’s classic—monster cycle movies
Climaxing with—campy Abbott and Costello’s
Best Horror Comedy Flick—ever made

Universal had exploited—the horror genre
All through the ‘30s—and early ‘40s with
Monsterfests galore—Dracula, Frankenstein
The Wolf Man, The Mummy, The Invisible Man

Postwar monsters—plus Abbott and Costello
Seemed tired—and burned out though until
Producer Robert Arthur’s clever notion of
Camping it up with—cartoonish excesses.

House of Frankenstein (1944)—already
Started the process—along with tres outré
House of Dracula (1945)—utramodern
Dystopian science—needed new monsters

Haunted houses—weren’t scary anymore
Not after Europe & Hiroshima—lost everything
McDougal’s Spook House—House of Horrors?
Nothing was left—except campy nostalgia

The same film noir—melodramatic lighting
Adds to Glen Strange’s—sullen goodbye
Bella Lugosi as usual—Balkan & moody
Lon Chaney Jr.—hysterically Wolf Man

Jane Randolph—shows up in fog-shrouded
Bayou Castle—saves Abbott and Costello
From a fate worse than death—seduction
By Dr. Mornay—Dracula’s sultry assistant

The climax—to the movie & genre era
A huge bitch fight—amongst old friends
What a campy way—to say goodbye
Both scary—and exquisitely gay

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