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Patty O'Furniture
09-28-2006, 12:33 PM
Did Mary Shelly's monster have neck bolts? Seems unlikely as it was written in the early 1800's when the concept of a mechanical bolt would probably have been lost on most readers. In fact the neck bolt wouldn't really become a monsterous fashion statement until it could be visually depicted to an audience, so maybe the silver screen was responsible for the addition of neck bolts.

Anybody know?

AndrewL
09-28-2006, 12:44 PM
Unless I'm mistaken, nearly everything associated with the Frankenstein mythos was invented by Hollywood, including the neck bolts, use of lightning to bring the monster to life, and a lab assistant named Igor.

RealityChuck
09-28-2006, 12:44 PM
The bolts were created by Jack Pierce for the 1931 movie. Because they looked cool. Certainly the earlier, Charles Ogle silent version had no neck bolts (at least not in any existing stills (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ru/b/bb/Charles_Ogle_In_Frankenstein_1910.jpg).

Lemur866
09-28-2006, 12:45 PM
The flat head and neck bolts were all movie inventions. And the neck bolts aren't mechanical bolts holding on the head, but electrodes.

Patty O'Furniture
09-28-2006, 12:48 PM
Unless I'm mistaken, nearly everything associated with the Frankenstein mythos was invented by Hollywood, including the neck bolts, use of lightning to bring the monster to life, and a lab assistant named Igor.

What about Frau Blücher?

CalMeacham
09-28-2006, 12:49 PM
Shelley's creature didn't have neck bolts. No representation of the monster I've seen prior to the James Whale film had neck bolts. That includes Charles Ogle in the 1910 film version and even Hamilton Deane in the Peggy Webling play that was ostensibly the basis for the 1931 Universal film.

They played with a lot of odd hardware for that makeup. I've seen sketches that show massive U-bolts in the monster's forehead (along with raised "welts" under them). A lot of the design was by makeup artist Jack Pierce. But in the movie Gods and Monsters, "James Whale" (Ian McKellan)claims that he came up with the basic idea of the flat-topped head ("Like a beef tin!") and the bolts ("to let the electricity in"), and has a sketch of this that he gives to Brendan Fraser at the end.

I don't know who, of Pierce or Whale really did come up with the bolts (or if someone else at Universal did), but it comes from that film and its successors. In the 1948 abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, Dracula uses his ring to charge the monster with electricty through those bolts and bring him back to life, but I don't recall them ever being used like that in any other flick. Pity -- they're the perfect place to clamp on the jumper cables. Just remember to put the last clamp on the car chassis. Or Frankenstein's butt.

Gatopescado
09-28-2006, 12:50 PM
Duh! They are for jump-starting him!

silenus
09-28-2006, 12:51 PM
Where else are you going to put the jumper cables?

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-28-2006, 12:55 PM
What about Frau Blücher?

WHE-HE-HE-HEEEEee! (http://misheli.image.pbase.com/u14/digitalfrog/upload/41767983.horse.jpg )


:p
:D

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-28-2006, 12:57 PM
Dammit!

Link didn't worl!

<sulks>

Earl Snake-Hips Tucker
09-28-2006, 01:03 PM
Boris Karloff was not a tall man, so I suspect the thick-soled boots and the extended high forehead were to make him more physically imposing. Actually, that's sorta similar to the late Andre the Giant, who, in his prime, was just a sliver over a legitimate 7', but with the thick boots and the afro, his "height" was billed as high as 7'5", although by the time of his death, his height is reported to have shrunk to 6'10" as complications of arthritis.

Patty O'Furniture
09-28-2006, 01:06 PM
Dammit!

Link didn't work!

<sulks>

"You don't have permission to access the horse on this server." :)

carnivorousplant
09-28-2006, 01:13 PM
a lab assistant named Igor.

It's Eye-gor.

CalMeacham
09-28-2006, 01:30 PM
Unless I'm mistaken, nearly everything associated with the Frankenstein mythos was invented by Hollywood, including the neck bolts, use of lightning to bring the monster to life, and a lab assistant named Igor.


I believe you're right, except that the not-really-hunchbacked assistant was named "Fritz".

I kid you not. It was played by Dwight Frye, channelling the Renfield character he'd played in "Dracula", which in turn channeled Bernard Jukes playing Renfield. It's pretty clear to me that they put that character into Frankenstein's lab so that Colin Clive's Dr./ Frankenstein would have someone to talk to, rather than talking to himself or being reeduced to voice-overs. They probably also got an assist from the dwarf who's Rotwang's assistant (albeit glimpsed only briefly) in Metropolis. Rotwang's lab seems to have helped inspire Frankenstein's, so I wouldn't be surprised if they got a quasi-hunchback inspired by a dwarf.

Fritz got killed off in the first movie, but Dwight Frye was back as a virtual clone of thast character in The Bride of Frankenstein, where he got killed off again. It wasn't until the third movie that an assistant named "Igor" showed up -- but he wasn't a hunchback. He was a shepherd with a twisted neck (the result of a failed hanging attempt), played by Bela Lugosi. He was back in the next film. It wasn't until House of Frankenstein that a legitimately hunchbacked assistant showed up, but he wasn't named "Igor", either. The whole "hunchbacked assistant named Igor" seems to be people, cartoons, and comedians amalgamating the most memorable aspects into a single character.



By the way, it';s pretty clear that the name of Marty Feldman's character in Young Frankenstein is pronounced "EE-Gore". That's what Wilder's charactwer had been told. Feldman's character only claims the pronunciation is "EYE-Gore" when he hears Wilder pronounce his name as "Fron-kon-steen", and evidently thinks he's putting on airs.

WhyNot
09-28-2006, 01:34 PM
But in the movie Gods and Monsters, "James Whale" (Ian McKellan)claims that he came up with the basic idea of the flat-topped head ("Like a beef tin!")
gabriela said something in an autopsy thread once about a common rookie mistake involving not cutting a notch when taking off the top of the skull to remove (or examine?) the brain. Apparently, if you do this and then put everything back together and pull the skin back up over the skull and hand the body back to the family for burial, the sliced off skull will slip out of place, resulting in "Frankenstein head" . Or maybe it was the brow. (All I can envision is notching the top of the pumpkin so the jack-o-lantern top fits back together smoothly.)

So maybe it's not so far fetched an effect, considering the brain transplant.

FordPrefect
09-28-2006, 01:37 PM
No, it was because the head kept falling off

Shodan
09-28-2006, 03:46 PM
It's Eye-gor.
They told me it was Igor.

Regards,
Shodan

carnivorousplant
09-28-2006, 04:03 PM
They told me it was Igor.

Regards,
Shodan

Well they were wrong, weren't they?

CalMeacham
09-28-2006, 04:28 PM
No, it was because the head kept falling off


One of my favorite Gary Larson cartoons:

Dr. Frankenstein and Igor and a headless monster out searching the fields in the night.

Dr. Frankenstein: "That does it! If we ever find your head I'm bolting that sucker on!"

jsc1953
09-28-2006, 04:40 PM
Another thing about Frankenstein that I've always wondered...the monster appears (in all film versions) to be stitched together from various odd parts. Why didn't the Dr. just reanimate a complete body?

CalMeacham
09-28-2006, 04:55 PM
Another thing about Frankenstein that I've always wondered...the monster appears (in all film versions) to be stitched together from various odd parts. Why didn't the Dr. just reanimate a complete body?



Very good question.

In Shelley's book, it isn't stated that he stitched the body together from "spare parts" -- Frankenstrein got his raw materuials from biological sources, but it's sort of implied that he built his monster more "from scratch".


Why was it changed? Maybe they thought it was too close to "playing God" to make everything up. Maybe they thought the notion of making everything was too hard for the audience to grasp, or that it was far too complex.

But re-animating a once-living body, I'm sure, was too close to religion for the movie companies. Frankenstein would be doing the same kind of re-animation that Jesus did. I'll bet that scared the execs. They are careful to have Frankenstein say "That Body has Never Lived!" When he's explaining his work.

Of course, to my mind resurrecting a previously non-existent person with the single brain of someone who had been alive (especially, as in YF, "Hans Delbruck: Scientist and Saint") is almost indistinguishable from bringing that person back to life. But maybe it gave them an out.


Besides, if he doesn't at least sew the body together, it seems as if Frankenstein hasn't actually made anything.

Freddy the Pig
09-28-2006, 05:10 PM
A reanimated corpse would be insufficiently "different" for Mary Shelley's purposes--it would look too much like an ordinary human being, and might have memories of its earlier existence, and Frankenstein wouldn't be its "creator", merely its reanimator.

As for explaining why Frankenstein couldn't or didn't do it, all she says is:Pursuing these reflections, I thought, that if I could bestow animation upon lifeless matter, I might in process of time (although I now found it impossible) renew life where death had apparently devoted the body to corruption.Of course, this doesn't make a lick of sense--why would it be easier to animate a hodgepodge of body parts then to reanimate the dead? But it's necessary to the story, and Shelley is more concerned with philosophy than scientific consistency.

kaylasdad99
09-28-2006, 05:22 PM
And where did he get a bunch of oversized parts to work with in the first place?

Bryan Ekers
09-28-2006, 05:30 PM
And where did he get a bunch of oversized parts to work with in the first place?

Abbie.... something.

Misnomer
09-28-2006, 05:32 PM
And where did he get a bunch of oversized parts to work with in the first place?After he decides to make a "gigantic" being, all I can find is this quote:

"The dissecting room and the slaughter-house furnished many of my materials..."

Whether that means materials for experimentation or materials for the creature itself, I'm not sure. Shelley seems to have left many such details out; maybe she considered them unimportant?

Abbie.... something.Heh.

I happen to be reading Frankenstein right now for school: we've only gotten about halfway through the book, but there have already been plenty of Young Frankenstein jokes. :)

aruvqan
09-28-2006, 06:02 PM
Boris Karloff was not a tall man, so I suspect the thick-soled boots and the extended high forehead were to make him more physically imposing.
I never really considered 5'11" particularly short, myself. I took it from his biography that the story was to give him a lurching walk.

Captain Amazing
09-28-2006, 06:15 PM
The monster.

His limbs were in proportion, and I had selected his features as beautiful. Beautiful!--Great God! His yellow skin scarcely covered the work of muscles and arteries beneath; his hair was of a lustrous black, and flowing; his teeth of a pearly whiteness; but these luxuriances only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that seemed almost of the same colour as the dun white sockets in which they were set, his shrivelled complexion and straight black lips.

Mangetout
09-28-2006, 06:16 PM
Where else are you going to put the jumper cables?
If not on the bolts, maybe on the nuts?

jsc1953
09-28-2006, 06:42 PM
The monster.

Sounds a lot like Edward Scissorhands.

Terrifel
09-28-2006, 07:36 PM
I never really considered 5'11" particularly short, myself. I took it from his biography that the story was to give him a lurching walk.Boris Karloff was only 5'11"? Seriously? Good Christ, the man knew how to act tall! That boggles my mind. I'm as tall as Boris Karloff! I'm as huge as Frankenstein's Monster! Rrrruuaarrrr! *wanders off in search of random windmills or power lines*

kunilou
09-28-2006, 07:36 PM
[QUOTE]Quote:
His limbs were in proportion, and I had selected his features as beautiful. Beautiful!--Great God! His yellow skin scarcely covered the work of muscles and arteries beneath; his hair was of a lustrous black, and flowing; his teeth of a pearly whiteness; but these luxuriances only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that seemed almost of the same colour as the dun white sockets in which they were set, his shrivelled complexion and straight black lips.


He must have an enormous schvanztucker!

Bosda Di'Chi of Tricor
09-29-2006, 07:17 AM
He must have an enormous schvanztucker!

Please don't repeat the old one about him being popular!

:rolleyes:

Nava
09-29-2006, 07:54 AM
Boris Karloff was only 5'11"? Seriously? Good Christ, the man knew how to act tall! That boggles my mind. I'm as tall as Boris Karloff! I'm as huge as Frankenstein's Monster! Rrrruuaarrrr! *wanders off in search of random windmills or power lines*

Eeergh... you know that back when he was born, 5'11" wasn't an only at all, right?
Damnit guys, just look at basketball statistics before you decide that anyone shorter than you and 100 years older is a dwarf!

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