Saturday, August 31, 2013

Bark Raving Mad

Such crackpots are hard to explain
They're quacks, deeply scarred and insane
They pretend to need pets
And befriend naïve vets
Then attack St. Bernards for their brains.

Boris Karloff is Dr.Gustav Niemann, describing his dog-human brain transplant in House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944).

Friday, August 30, 2013

Jailhouse Shock

Through the bars, the old goat roughly seizes
The poor guard, on his throat tightly squeezes
With no air, passing out,
He can't swear, he can't shout
Trying hard to emote, he just wheezes.

In House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944), prisoner Boris Karloff strangles guard Charles Wagenheim for a piece of chalk.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Going to the Doggerel

On the wall of his cell he will doodle
An appalling, intelligent poodle
Mixing canine and man,
This most heinous brain plan
Proves the scrawler's unwell in his noodle.

Dr.Niemann, (Boris Karloff) is rotting and plotting in prison at the start of House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944).

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Dog Pound of Flesh

His life's work they derided as folly
Now each jerk, their eyes wide, exclaims "Golly!"
Their respect he attained
When one skeptic, de-brained,
Was found lurking inside of a collie.

Boris Karloff is Gustav Niemann, a doctor who specializes in dog-human brain transplants: House of Frankenstein (Erle Kenton, 1944).

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Last House of Frankenstein on the Left

To the titular castle he'll slog
Where he'll fit a man's brain in a dog
Round the bend he's been trotting
His foe's endings he's plotting
His obit will read "Drowned in a bog."

The imprisoned and crazy Dr.Gustav Niemann seeks to continue Frankenstein's experiments in "eternal life":  Boris Karloff stars in House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944). Note the chalk diagram of a dog-human brain transplant drawn on the cell wall.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Twerk Song

Whistle while you twerk
Give your hips a jerk
Miley Cyrus
Caught a virus
Now she's gone berserk.

Whatever. Miley Cyrus at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards, aka Sin City TV. The latest kerfuffle in the American knee-jerk media circus.

The Wagenheim-Licked Manouevre

Boris switched to creator from creature
He's a witch doc, through grates he's a reacher
Choking Chuck for his chalk
(Squelched, he can't squeak or squawk)
In a kitschy third-rate second feature.

David Cairns

Boris Karloff, having played the monster thrice, becomes a mad scientist who establishes his villainy in House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton; 1944) by throttling prison guard Charles Wagenheim just to get a piece of chalk.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Mutt Testimony

Quite insane he has grown while in stir
He'll remain till his bones they inter
Something evil and vile
Was revealed at his trial
A man's brain he had sewn in a cur!

At the start House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944), Dr.Gustav Niemann (Boris Karloff) is serving time for performing a dog-human brain transplant. Title by pure-bred David Cairns.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Doghouse of Frankenstein

In his cell Dr. Niemann just sits
Like a hell with no key, it's the pits
He just cannot explain
Why he'd plant a man's brain
In a spaniel to see if it fits.

Surly Hack and David Cairns

In House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944), convict Dr. Gustav Niemann (Boris Karloff) contemplates s dog-human brain transplant.

Friday, August 23, 2013

A House Derided

Here's a tidy assortment of freaks
True and tried, bona fide to raise shrieks
Toe to toe they reside
So there's nowhere to hide
They collide and cavort, jowls to cheeks.

A mad doctor (Boris Karloff) and his hunchback assistant (J. Carrol Naish), Frankenstein's Monster (newcomer Glenn Strange), the Wolf Man (old standby Lon Chaney) and Dracula (the always working John Carradine) all stop living in House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944), a so-called "monster rally"from Universal.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Return of the Living Duds

Could a dam-burst dispose of this pair?
Or do hams decompose in thin air?
They'll revive in a sequel
And at drive-ins your shriek will
Be dampened by throes of despair.

David Cairns

Both the Wolf Man and the Monster survive the flood at the end of Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man, and are revived by Dr. Gustav Niemann in House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944). Western actor Glenn Strange takes over as the Monster, Boris Karloff is Niemann, and Lon Chaney Jr returns as  Larry Talbot, the Wolf Man.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Drown Among the Dead Men

Their bicuspids they gnash with great vim
And with gusto they smash on a whim
Fore and aft the pair battle
Castle rafters a-rattle
The dam busts -- there's a Splash! -- they can't swim.

Surly Hack and David Cairns

Lon Chaney Jr and Lugosi clash in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943). Over at his film blog, Shadowplay, David Cairns has given me credit for editing at LimerWrecks. Truth be told, David has been my editor and sounding board, as well as the head title writer here for many months. 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Baseball Has Been Very Bad to Me

Meanwhile, over at Bardball, the site dedicated to "Reviving the art of baseball doggerel", a number of my limericks have been posted this season. They're written on various aspects of the game and business of baseball and its players: the game's impermanenceAlex Rodriguez and steroids, the slugging power of the Texas Rangers, the double-playballpark concessions, the ruinous modernization planned for quaint Wrigley Field, both here and here, and, co-written with LimerWrecks' own Jim Siergey, the rudeness of fans

But my pet peeve and perennial subject is the pathetic Chicago Cubs. My eternal pessimism about my home team takes the form of rants about spring training, the start of the season, their home-opener, their early and short-lived division lead and lack of relief pitching this year, and, always, their chronic ineptitude.

Boo Ballyhoo

"Fiends of fury, with baleful eyes, hairy arms, dripping jowls...seething in lust for human blood!"

With those jowls full of gore always dripping
This unfortunate bore should be gripping
Fright film's mightiest pair
Should delightfully scare
But from horrors of yore they are slipping.

Béla Lugosi and Lon Chaney Jr as the Monster and the Wolf Man can't live up to the ballyhoo for Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943).

Monday, August 19, 2013

Slab Happy

By bolt lightning the giant's enabled
This most frightening science is fabled
Though poor Larry is known
For how hairy he's grown
Both their might by some guy has been tabled.

Lon Chaney Jr and Béla Lugosi star as the Wolf Man the Monster, with lesser lights Ilona Massey as Baroness Frankenstein, and Patric Knowles as Dr. Mannering, in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943). So long, Meets, here comes House of Frankenstein (1944). Title by happy-go-lucky David Cairns.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Line Break Time

I've grown cranky, my head has an ache
Mind a blank, I'll drop dead with no break
By strange monsters compounded
Put upon and surrounded
How much Franken-Wolf dread can I take?

Lon Chaney Jr and Béla Lugosi struggle through Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (Roy William Neill; 1943).

We're taking a short breather. Rest assured that we'll be back soon to continue our chronological exhumation and dissection of the Universal Frankenstein series.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Watery Grave Misdemeanor

He was dead for a spell, then revived
Of a head that works well was deprived
Though deep waters deter him
And they ought to inter him
This incredible fellow survived.

At the end of Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man, the monster was engulfed in a flooding castle, and he must be thawed (again) in the next film in the series, House of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton, 1944): Boris Karloff is vengeance driven Dr. Gustav Niemann (center), J. Carrol Naish is the romantic hunchback Daniel (right), and Glenn Strange is the slumbering Monster. We will visit House when we return. Title by water boy David Cairns.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Bleak Preview

The edit was not very kind
Never said that the monster was blind
So Lugosi looked daft
And at shows people laughed
Misled he was out of his mind.

Surly Hack and David Cairns

Béla Lugosi plays The Monster in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (Roy William Neill; 1943).

Friday, August 9, 2013

Vision Quest-ion?

Has old Frankie impaired, blurry vision?
He stares blankly since surgeon's incision
Creature's storming about
Reaching gormlessly out
Cause he can't bear incurring collision.

David Cairns

The Monster's arms-stretched stagger was the result of blindness, a condition left unexplained in the final edit; Béla Lugosi in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943).

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Splash of the Titans

This fear feature's no thrill double-threat
Their big "meet" just a chill tête-à-tête
The pair barely engage
In a scary rampage
And they're beat when a spill gets them wet.

The Monster and the Wolf Man (Béla Lugosi and Lon Chaney Jr) are washed away by a dam bursting in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (Roy William Neill; 1943).

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Strange Bad Fellows

It's a scare-fest to pique curiosity
But it's bare of technique and ferocity
With no battle balletic
It's just flat and pathetic
When they pair a furred freak and monstrosity.

Larry Talbot (Lon Chaney Jr) and the Monster (Béla Lugosi) watch the pyrotechnics in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943). It isn't strange at all that this was titled by David Cairns.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Chortle Combat

Their big battle royale is a dud
Mad as hatters, they fail to draw blood
It's no duel to the death
With the duo's last breath
More a spat where they flail, then a flood.

The Monster (Béla Lugosi) and the Wolf Man (Lon Chaney Jr) knock over the lab equipment in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943).

Monday, August 5, 2013

Street Fright

With a shriek, boys and goils start to run
A big freak comes and spoils all the fun
As he lumbers about
Townsfolk stumble and shout,
"That unspeakable son of a Hun!"

The Monster (Béla Lugosi) interrupts the Festival of the New Wine in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (Roy William Neill; 1943).

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Grisliness as Usual

There's Talbot's per usual frown
Monster ailing, reduced to a clown
It's a shambles, the worst
But the dam someone's burst
And the fallible twosome should drown.

Béla Lugosi is the Monster, and Lon Chaney Jr is the Wolf Man, in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (Roy William Neill; 1943). Rex Evans is Vaszec, the villager who plants the dynamite. As usual, the title is by David Cairns.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The Life Without Soul of the Party

Someone sings and he fears he's upstaged
The song rings in his ears -- he's enraged!
Interrupt him, dear sir,
He'll erupt and grow fur,
Like a thing which should clearly be caged.

In what has to be the most unintentionally funny moment in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943), Larry Talbot (Lon Chaney Jr) goes ballistic and grabs the festival singer (Adia Kuznetzoff). Title by party animal David Cairns.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Early to Dead, Early to Rise

Lid pulled off, and the garlic displaced,
Larry's coffin two varlets defaced
When the moon filters in
Fur will soon cover skin,
And with paw and a snarl they're embraced.

Larry Talbot (Lon Chaney Jr) reaches for a duo of grave robbers (Tom Stevenson and Cyril Delevanti) in the moody opening sequence of Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (Roy William Neill; 1943).

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Sequel Rites

They're a motley and menacing pair
Misbegotten, they're sentenced to scare
But there isn't the room
In one script, I assume
For both monsters to get a fair share.

With Lon Chaney Jr's Wolf Man the star of the show, the Monster and Béla Lugosi get short shrift in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943). Title by rite-minded David Cairns.