Tonight on MeTV- we bring back Lon Chaney Jr. in his only role as part of the most famous vampire family of all- as he makes his way to the American bayou land, and endeavors to inflict the curse of the undead upon an unsuspecting family! He drains the love out of a romance- as well as draining blood from his latest victim- as a young woman with a fascination for the dark side falls under the spell of the “Son of Dracula”!
In what is actually the third film in the Universal Dracula series- coming in the canon after "Dracula's Daughter"- this 1943 tale begins at a party on a plantation down south- being held to welcome an aristocratic count met overseas by one of the wealthy plantation owner’s daughters- a young woman named Catherine, who has what her sister Claire and boyfriend Frank feel is a rather morbid interest in the occult!
The train the Count is scheduled to arrive on comes into the station- but- he doesn’t appear to be on board! However, the train’s freight does include some heavy boxes with his family crest – as well as his family name- “Alucard”. (Hmm - run that one by us again, backwards, maybe?) In spite of his absence, the big party must go on at the plantation- but tragedy strikes when the wealthy father of the girls suddenly passes away- coinciding with the very late-night arrival of Count Alucard, who has finally made his way to the plantation.
The father's will is being read- when Catherine suddenly produces an updated version - that provides for all the money to go to Claire, and the “Dark Oaks” mansion and grounds to Catherine. Things get more bizarre when Catherine reveals that she and the Count are a couple , shocking her supposed fiancé poor Frank! Before long, Frank has a confrontation with the newcomer- and tragedy strikes again! As the situation becomes more baffling- an expert in certain matters is called in- and soon, the Count's true identity is revealed. The Count has plans to take control of his new bride-and then, this new country he has taken residence in-ready to eliminate the remaining family and friends who stand in his way!
Lon Jr's being cast as the Count (and- though he's called the son- some theorize that he is actually the original Count?! ) seems –well- out of character for Mr. Chaney- but you have to agree- this character definitely has some differences from his role as the tortured Larry Talbot- with the air of aristocracy and a more suave manner. Our cast also includes Evelyn Ankers, who's been a Chaney co-star several times (and often wasn't treated very well by Lon Jr!)- and the lovely Louise Allbritton as the sister with dark desires. We’ll present some info about the cast, and a little background material about the film- including an error that most people who have learned their vampire lore from these movies will easily spot! Plus- we have a nice dosage of Sven shtick to round out the final Saturday night of September!
“Son of Dracula” arrives tonight- not by rail, but on Me-TV at 8 pm eastern/pacific, 7 pm central, or, if you are unsure of what channel or time you can see us where you are, just check the local listings in your area or at www.metv.com. Remember that MeTV invites you to join in on the live –Tweeting during the show on Twitter- and make sure you use the hashtag #svengoolie .In the Chicago area, viewers get a second look at “Dr. Cyclops", back on our original local channel, CW26 at 11 am!
I’m making a return appearance in the world of Dick Tracy- as I’ll be showing up in the famed newspaper comic strip in a storyline about some supposed vampire attacks ( no, I’m not to blame!) You can see me in action – in color- in this Sunday’s comics- and I’ll be involved for about a week or so. My last visit with the legendary detective was over three years ago!
But tonight - see Lon Jr. in his epic appearance as a member of the Dracula family- no matter how you spell it- forward or backwards!