Tonight on MeTV- it’s the month of the great Vincent Price’s birth, and we pay tribute to him with a full schedule of some of his most famous horror films! We kick off the celebration tonight with one of his truly memorable roles of the ‘50s- notable for being presented in 3-D ( but shown in 2-D tonight!)-as we usher you into the “House of Wax”!
We visit the New York museum of Professor Henry Jarrod- a gifted sculptor who prefers to create historic tableaus instead of the sensationalistic type displays found in most wax museums. However, with popular tastes being what they are in the early 1900s, these cultural displays don’t bring in enough revenue- so, his business partner, Matthew Burke, feels that, since Jarrod refuses to go the more shocking horrific route, the best profit would be via insurance money- and he proceeds to burn the museum down, with Jarrod trapped inside and thought to be killed in the conflagration!
Time has passed, and years later, we see that Jarrod has miraculously survived-though now he is wheelchair bound, with his hands crippled and unable to sculpt any longer. Regardless, with the help of some assistants, including the mute sculptor Igor, he has built a new wax museum, but his standards appear to have changed- this time, it includes the “house of horrors” type exhibits that Jarrod used to shun.
Meanwhile, lurking out in the streets of New York, a cloaked, disfigured killer has been on a murderous mission. He kills the fiancée of Jarrod’s old partner Burke- who appears to have committed suicide- and soon, the young woman’s body mysteriously disappears from the morgue!
That fiancée Cathy’s roommate Sue, who actually found her friend’s body and came face to frightening face with the killer, joins her sculptor boyfriend Scott, employed by Jarrod, in a visit to the new museum- and is bothered by the fact that the wax figure of Joan of Arc strongly resembles her late friend. Jarrod wheels up in his chair and explains that photos of the dead girl were used as reference in creating the figure. He also suggests that she- Sue- is the perfect model for a new figure of Marie Antoinette, since she has a striking resemblance to his original version that burned in the fire.
However, Sue is not convinced by his story about using photos as his inspiration- and sneaks into the museum to inspect the Joan of Arc statue- leading to a shocking confrontation that could see she herself become a permanent part of the museum collection- and no longer a part of the land of the living!
This 1953 film has beautiful color, and an amazing cast, with, of course, Price as Prof. Jarrod, Charles Bronson (billed as Charles Buchinsky) as his mute lackey Igor, Carolyn Jones, later gaining fame as the “Addams Family” matriarch Morticia( as seen on MeTV), and more- we’ll tell you about the cast, with plenty of information on the production, including an odd irony regarding the director Andre DeToth. And- yes, you’ll see the famed “paddleball” scene, which may have been impressive in 3-D, but now seems fairly goofy! We will also have a special brief tribute to our friend the late Gilbert Gottfried, whom we lost last month.
"House of Wax" opens its doors on MeTV at 8 pm eastern/pacific, 7 central time- if you need help finding where and when it airs in your area, check your local listings, or at www.metv.com. The many fans live-Tweeting during the show, using the hashtag #svengoolie , have been keeping our program among the top trending topics nationally on Twitter most Saturday nights, and MeTV encourages you to join in! For our viewers in the Chicago area, at 11 am on CW26, we have an encore showing of the ‘80s remake of “Invaders from Mars” for you to enjoy.
Thanks to everyone for your votes in the national Rondo awards that have gotten me named the favorite horror host of 2021! We are hoping to do a live presentation of our Rondos at a public appearance this summer. We also hope you got to see our epic appearance with our friend Joe Bob Briggs as we helped him celebrate his 100th show on the Shudder network ( now available streaming there). We hope to have him, and mail girl Darcy, join us on our program in the future!
In the meantime, join us tonight as we begin a month of Vincent Price features- and wax nostalgic about one of the great horror icons of all time!