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The Frankenstein monster is an iconic horror film monster first popularly recognised in the 1931 film by Universal Pictures, Frankenstein but since has been the most successful monster ever to grace the silver screen, it has even been more successful than the other extremely popular classic Universal monsters Dracula and The Wolf Man. And also for years it has been a popular misconception that Frankenstein is the name of the monster, that name in fact is given to the monster's creator, Henry Frankenstein.

Biography[edit | edit source]

The Frankenstein Monster was an undead creature, stitched together from body parts of ten different men. It was the original Doctor Frankenstein who first brought the monster to life by harnessing the power of a lightning storm. The true secret to his experiment however, was a field of radiation given off by a passing comet. In conjunction with the lightning, the creature was able to truly come to life. The monster's activities in the decades following his creation remained largely unknown, though he did appear in the Western United States as late as the mid 20th century.

An unscrupulous scientist named Doctor Beaumont, along with two others had come into possession of the monster. They knew that one of their own colleagues, Doctor Durae, was in fact the last member of the Frankenstein family line. Unwilling to share his work with Durae, Beaumont set fire to his laboratory, crippling Durae in the process. He then buried the Frankenstein Monster in an unmarked grave at Oakmoor Cemetery; waiting until such time as he would be able to resume his own experiments.

In March of 1969, the vampire known as Count Dracula exhumed the remains of the Frankenstein Monster from the cemetery. He brought him to the laboratory of Doctor Durae,E re of the fact that he was the last surviving Frankenstein. Dracula convinced Durae to reanimate the monster and use it to avenge himself against those responsible for crippling him. Durae agreed to cooperate with Dracula and used his own scientific prowess to restore the creature to life.

Dracula found Doctor Beaumont and manipulated him into crossing paths with the monster. Beaumont tried to escape, but the monster snatched him in his arms and crushed him to death in a massive bear hug.

Dracula used his hypnotic powers to keep the monster under his control and used him to find victims for Doctor Durae's experiments. While terrorizing a pair of motorists, the monster ran afoul of two police officers who opened fire on him. The Monster fought back, killing one of the officers in the process.

Later, Dracula ordered the monster to kill a man named Mike Howard, who was trying to rescue a woman named Judith Fontaine from Dracula's clutches. Mike ignited a road flare and shoved it into the monster's face, temporarily blinding him. The monster wheeled about and attacked Dracula, mistaking him for Mike. Dracula reassumed control over the monster through hypnosis, but their brief scuffle provided Mike enough time to free Judith.

Dracula and the monster then recaptured Judith and brought her to an old abandoned church. By this point however, the monster had developed an interest in Judith and did not wish to see her come to further harm. As Dracula prepared to bite her throat, the monster rebelled against him and the two began fighting one another inside the church. During the fight, the monster succeeded in pulling the ring off of Dracula's finger.

The two continued their fight outside and their struggle brought them into the nearby forest. Although Dracula was weaker without his ring, he was still strong enough to overpower the Frankenstein Monster. He tore both of the creature's arms out of their sockets and then ripped his head from his body.

Original Death[edit | edit source]

The original ending to the film was intended to take place when Dracula first confronts the Frankenstein Monster on the rooftop. This finale was predicated by an earlier abridged scene where Forrest J. Ackerman's character, Doctor Beaumont, informed Dracula that the Frankenstein Monster could be destroyed by a concentrated burst of intense heat to his chest. In the rooftop scene, the Monster willfully betrays Dracula (as opposed to blindingly mistaking him for Mike Howard) and the two fight. Dracula recalls Doctor Beaumont's words and uses the heat from his ring's death ray to rupture the monster's heart. [2]

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • This is the first time that radiation produced by a passing comet has been used in the Frankenstein creation story.
  • The production crew had to replace John Bloom who played the Frankenstein Monster with Shelly Weiss for the reshot scenes in the church. Weiss is credited in the film as the "Creature", whereas Bloom is credited as the "Frankenstein Monster", suggesting that they were supposed to be two separate characters. [2]
  • In one of the early drafts of the film, Dracula was to bite the Frankenstein Monster, turning him into a vampire. However, actor John Bloom had too much difficulty fitting the fake vampire fangs in place in addition to his regular makeup, so the idea was scrapped.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Although released in 1971, the events from Dracula vs. Frankenstein take place in March of 1969.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Sam Sherman; Dracula vs. Frankenstein DVD audio commentary
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