Yes, it's another "rotten relative" this week- as the Son also rises, with Boris Karloff in his final big screen appearance as the Monster, Bela Lugosi's first appearance as the sinister Ygor, and Basil Rathbone as the title descendant in -"Son of Frankenstein"!
We meet young Wolf Frankenstein and his wife, heading back to his dad's home town- only to be met by a less-than-friendly crowd who hold nothing but animosity towards the Frankenstein family. Arriving at the old family home,Wolf finds his little boy is there, along with his governess. As he surveys the castle, Wolf still hopes to redeem his father's name and reputation- and meets with local policeman Inspector Krogh- who is worried about the family's safety. Krogh is sadly familiar with the work of Wolf's dad- he sports a wooden arm, due to an unfortunate encounter with the Monster years ago!
When Wolf goes to investigate his father's dilapidated laboratory, he finds someone dangerous lurking there- the deformed blacksmith Ygor, who was hung for grave-robbing, but survived the noose- albeit with his neck twisted and calcified. Since he was hanged for his crime, he cannot be legally persecuted further, in spite of still living. He reveals that Wolf's father's creation is still around- and could be restored to full strength! Wolf decides that perhaps this is how he can prove his father was indeed a genius, and restore his good name- but- what will a revived Monster mean for the Frankenstein family- and the town? And- what is the devious Ygor's part in all this?
This 1939 sequel to "Bride of Frankenstein" is noteworthy not only for Karloff's final movie appearance as the Monster, but also the first appearance of Ygor- played brilliantly by Bela Lugosi. Basil Rathbone is often frantic as Wolf Frankenstein, and some stories say he played his part way over the top because he felt being in this horror film was somewhat beneath him. Regardless, this is a worthy entry in Universal's Frankenstein series- and, again, has the basis for another of the gags in Mel Brooks' "Young Frankenstein" with the character of one-armed Inspector Krough, played by Lionel Atwill. We'll go over the cast for you tonight, and give more background on the film. Due to this movie being longer than the usual amount of time we have for our show elements, we'll minimize the Sven content so you can get as much of the movie as possible.
"Son of Frankenstein" runs tonight on Me-TV as this week's "Rotten Relatives Reunion" entry at 10 pm eastern/pacific, 9 pm central, and please check your local listings if you're not sure when we run in your timezone. In Chicago, you can see the movie that "Son of" is a sequel to- "Bride of Frankenstein" - at 11 am on our local sister station,WCIU, the U.
Don't forget our big event at Chicago's Squared Circle restaurant tomorrow- you can find the info on that in a previous blog and under the "appearance" tab on this site.
Next week- we'll have a rotten relative from a different frightening family!