Tuesday, October 31, 2017

May Cause Lousiness

Mad doctors, ignore that wild notion!
Concoct not deplorable potion!
One pour of the stuff
Is more than enough
To set schlock film horrors in motion.

Fredric March as stirs up trouble in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (Rouben Mamoulian; 1931). Title caused by David Cairns. Happy Halloween from the mad scientists at LimerWrecks!

Stay tuned, fright fans.. In the coming weeks we'll continue our horror theme, with limericks about the films of Val Lewton and Jacques Tourneur, 1950s sci-fi monsters, Hammer Horror and more!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Meets Don't Fail Me Now

The Wolf Man sashays 'cross the map
The Monster is dazed, looks like crap
There's Frankenstein's daughter
And tanks full of water
Maleva drops phrase "That's a wrap!" 

The Monster (Bela Lugosi) looms like an armoire as Lawrence Talbot (Lon Chaney Jr) seeks the counsel of Maleva the Gypsy Woman (Maria Ouspenskaya) in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943).

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Doghouse of Frankenstein

He's noxiously evil and clever
Sends shocks with one squeeze of a lever
He's mad -- lost his grip -- 
Your shadow he'll snip!
It's this doctor's most fiendish endeavor.

The Mad Doctor (David Hand; 1933) is a classic Mickey Mouse cartoon co-starring Pluto. Due to its unusually scary content, at one time it was banned in the United Kingdom and Nazi Germany. Title by dog-eared Donald B. Benson.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

These Boots Were Made For Walking Dead

In footwear that's XXXL
This brute's raising heck in his cell
All warped in his mind
He leaves corpses behind
Now his boots walk directly to hell.

David Cairns

Boris Karloff IS the Monster of Frankenstein (James Whale; 1931). Accept no substitutes.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Best Performances in a Revival

This frightfully menacing ditz
Ignites when the energy hits
This man of spare parts,
Uncanny, restarts
Delighting both Henry and Fritz.

Boris Karloff as the Monster, Dwight Frye as Fritz, and Colin Clive as Henry Frankenstein (James Whale; 1931). Title by best boy Donald B. Benson.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Alone Again, Unnaturally

The monster and beast reunite.
But this time they don't get to fight.
And ere they come on,
Count Dracula's gone
(He only dropped in for a bite).

The hunchback got most of our pity.
He did things both gory and gritty
In hopes he could dump
His hunch for a hump
With gypsy girl perky and pretty.

Donald B. Benson

House of Frankenstein (1944) starred Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff and Lon Chaney, Jr., with J. Carrol Naish as Daniel the hunchback, and Elena Verdugo as the gypsy Ilonka.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Double Creature

We were there when the prior films said
Both the werewolf and giant were dead.
But, ka-CHING! monsters mash
And they bring monstrous cash
So the pair's unretired, instead.

Poor Talbot would shake off the ill
That caused him to howl and to kill.
The Monster sought sight
But there was a fight
And finally, both had to chill.

Donald B. Benson

Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943). Above: Dr. Mannering (Patric Knowles) begins by trying to help werewolf Larry Talbot (Lon Chaney, Jr.), but succumbs to the urge to revive Frankenstein's Monster (Bela Lugosi).

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

These Brutes Were Made For Walking

Tar-spreaders have boots like this fellow
He's dead; also mute; but he'll bellow
Does he work on the roads
Or just lurk, wearing 'trodes
With a head full of glutinous Jell-O?

David Cairns

The Ghost of Frankenstein (Erle C. Kenton; 1942), with Lionel Atwill, Sir Cedric Hardwicke, and ham-footed Lon Chaney Jr. Our Countdown to Halloween continues.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Severed Brides For Levered Lovers

The Monster wants custom-made bride
Which Frankenstein must then provide
Lest awful, dark fate
Befall his own mate
And everyone's lust is denied.

Donald B. Benson

Elizabeth Frankenstein (Valerie Hobson) is kidnapped by The Monster (Boris Karloff) in Bride of Frankenstein (James Whale; 1935).

Sunday, October 22, 2017

A Pullet With His Name on It


Full of dread, Pluto's heart starts to quicken
Will his head become part of a chicken?
Will he nest and lay eggs?
Will his breasts, thighs and legs
Be breaded, then served "finger lickin'"?

Pluto is one half of a bizarre experiment in the memorably macabre Mickey Mouse short, The Mad Doctor (David Hand; 1933). Title by name-dropping Donald B. Benson.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

It's a Clive! IT'S A CLIVE!

Colin Clive tends to rant when he's manic
"It's alive!" we will grant, it's galvanic
Yes, it twitches its digits
And in stitches, it fidgets
When it thrives he'll recant in a panic.

David Cairns

Bois Karloff is the Monster, given new life by Colin Clive, Henry Frankenstein (James Whale; 1931).

Friday, October 20, 2017

Edifice Wrecks

On the stair made of stone it's quite gloomy
Frigid air chills the bone -- it's too roomy
And except for the lab
So decrepit and drab
Sitting there all alone it feels tomb-y. 

Dwight Frye as hunchback Fritz is dwarfed by the massive sets of Frankenstein (James Whale; 1931).

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Dragging His Features

Once a man, now a musty old mummy
He's uncanny, but crusty and crumb-y
But one nip of this brew
And his grip's good as new
For the tana he's just a big rummy.

Lon Chaney Jr. stars as Kharis in The Mummy's Hand (Christy Cabanne; 1940), the first Mummy film after Karloff played the character in 1932. From this point on. the Universal Mummy shambled silently, with a distinct morning-after look. But his only refreshment was a potion of tana leaves.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017


Colin Clive's dashed to bits in a crash
He's alive! But his mitts are now hash
With his fists gone astray
His poor wrists cannot play
This deprived Horowitz ain't a smash.

David Cairns

Colin Clive is Stephen Orlac, a concert pianist who undergoes a double hand transplant in Mad Love (Karl Freund; 1935).

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Ready, Set, Gogol!

Gogol's morbid, and missing a screw
Guignol torture he'll blissfully view
When the featured performer
Gives a screech he gets warmer
Has Ms Orlac a sis? Are there two?

Doctor Gogol (Peter Lorre) is obsessed with Yvonne Orlac (Frances Drake) in Mad Love ( Karl Freund; 1935).

Monday, October 16, 2017

Poker Fazed

With a brand that could roast her they're poking
She can stand more than most, but she's soaking
As her sweat turns to steam
This stage vet starts to scream
"The Grand Guignol's posted 'non-smoking!'"

Madame Orlac (Frances Drake) performs in le Théâtre des Horreurs in Mad Love ( Karl Freund; 1935).Title by David Cairns, who's just getting warmed up. Our Countdown to Halloween continues..

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Disneyland of Lost Souls

This madman's a medical nut
A baddie who's ready to cut
This sicko's a pest
With chickens obsessed
The cad tries de-heading your mutt!

Pluto is threatened by The Mad Doctor (David Hand; 1933), a very scary and eerily atmospheric Mickey Mouse cartoon. The doc's experiment: transplanting Pluto's head onto the body of a chicken.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Piano Manic

Both his wrists in a crash have been hewn
Playing Liszt now, he'll bash out a tune
Due to mental disease 
Almost denting the keys
What a twisted and passionate loon!

Colin Clive plays a concert pianist who undergoes a double hand transplant in Mad Love (Karl Freund; 1935).

Friday, October 13, 2017

Assistance is Futile

Signs of strain, the maniacal laugh
It's quite plain Hank should try the half-caf
Playing God is the pits
With a clod such as Fritz
Drop a brain? Why's this guy still on staff?

Brain-dropper Fritz (Dwight Frye) watches from the background as Henry Frankenstein (Colin Clive) is restrained by Dr. Waldman (Edward Van Sloan) and Victor Moritz (John Boles): Frankenstein (James Whale; 1931). It's hard to imagine Karloff posing for stills wrapped as the Monster.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

May the Beast-Man Win

This jackal cuts out all your "flaws"
He hacks at your snouts and your paws
At each scalpel foul
You screech, yelp, and howl
But strike back when he flouts his own laws.

Doctor Moreau (Charles Laughton) and Montgomery (Arthur Hohl) operate in the "House of Pain": Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton; 1932).

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

The Beast Must Diet

Don't get caught by his belt, half-man flunky
You'll have bought a new welt, Mr. Monkey.
When that whip goes KER-ACK!
It will rip up your back
Doc Laughton's not svelte, but he's spunky.

David Cairns

Charles Laughton is whip-cracking Doctor Moreau, with Bela Lugosi as the "Sayer of the Law," one of the many beast-men on the Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton; 1932).

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Happy birthday, David Cairns!

Happy birthday to filmmaker, teacher, writer of too-much-stuff-to-mention, cat-wrangler, LimerWrecker, and genial host of the film blog Shadowplay, David Cairns!

Hanky-Pank Panther

From panther to woman transfigured!
She's anthropomorphic'lly jiggered
When this gal meets a friend
All her talons extend
Cat antics hormonally triggered.

David Cairns

Kathleen Burke as Lota, the Panther Woman, in Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton; 1932).

Monday, October 9, 2017

Cuts Up Doc?

Disdainful of nature's selection,
Through pain he creates a collection
An island he'll rule
Through science most cruel
His reign one of hateful dissection.

Doctor Moreau (Charles Laughton) looks down on his creations: Island of the Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton; 1932).

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Mouse of Horrors

As the skull on the railing post glares,
Little Mickey keeps climbing the stairs
At the landing he stops
And then back down he drops
The guy just doesn't get anywheres.

Mickey Mouse in the memorably moody short, The Mad Doctor (David Hand; 1933). Title by mousey Donald B. Benson.

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Practice Make Perverts

His practice is far from benign
Whips cracking keep part-men in line
Sick Doctor Moreau
Concocts a freak show
This quack out-bizarres Frankenstein!

Charles Laughton as Doctor Moreau in Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton; 1932). Donald B. Benson makes funny titles.

Friday, October 6, 2017

From Pillar to Post Mortem

As a robber, you'd beat and you'd strangle
Hanged by mob, now your feet sadly dangle
Think it couldn't get worse?
Here's no-goodniks, perverse!
To these slobs, you're dead meat they can mangle.

Colin Clive and Dwight Frye in Frankenstein (James Whale; 1931). Title by frequent poster Donald B. Benson, who writes, "Pity the nameless criminal salvaged by Frankenstein and friend. Imagine coming back after death with a defective brain and a knack for getting repeatedly killed and resuscitated."

Thursday, October 5, 2017

To Moreau

Dear Doctor, your questionable work
Is shocking, distressing, berserk
You've doddered, insane
Into God's own domain
A debacle, at best, you big jerk.

David Cairns

Richard Arlen, and Charles Laughton as the sadistic Dr. Moreau in Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton, 1932). Continuing the Countdown to Halloween, a month-long celebration of creepy movies and creepier verse.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Whole Lota Love

Not hirsute, but not too far removed
From those brutes still half-human and hooved
Lota's pretty and slinky
But this kitty is hinky
She's a beauty that's new, not improved.

Kathleen Burke is Lota, the Panther Woman in Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton; 1932).

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

With Love From Me to Zoo

This missy won't shout if he paws
He'd kiss her, but doubt at him gnaws
She's ready for clinches
Instead he just flinches
She hisses, and out come her claws.

Edwin Parker and Lota, the Panther Woman get jungle fever: Richard Arlen and Kathleen Burke in Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton, 1932). Title by animal lover Donald B. Benson.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Nature Versus Suture

The creations obscene by Moreau
Aren't nature as seen by Thoreau
Here a panther in heat
With a man's indiscreet
Such relations Joe Breen wouldn't show.

Richard Arlen and Kathleen Burke get close in the science fiction horror classic Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton, 1932). Joseph Breen became head censor of the Production Code Administration in 1934.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Hotter Than Cel

In settings as sweaty as Heck's,
Fiends threaten poor Betty with sex
If the ghouls ever got her
No fuel would burn hotter
And the petting would get rated X.

Welcome to the Countdown to Halloween on LimerWrecks! Betty Boop sizzles in Red Hot Mamma (Dave Fleischer,1934). Title by heat-seeking Donald B. Benson.