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Bela Lugosi comes under fire for not playing the Frankenstein monster as Boris Karloff played him.

What fans fail to remember that Ygor’s brain was transferred into the monster at the end of THE GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN. The Karloff monster died at the end of GHOST. His brain was tossed into the trash.

What we get in FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN is a whole new monster with a truly evil brain. The original Karloff monster is not truly malign. Ygor, from the moment we see him in THE SON OF FRANKENSTEIN is malign.

The monster goes blind at the end of GHOST. This accounts for Lugosi’s hands out style of walking. As well, Lugosi had dialogue in FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN although the dialogue was cut from the finished film kneecapping Lugosi’s performance. That dialogue is restored here: http://forums.tcm.com/topic/243155-frankenstein-meets-the-wolfman-missing-dialogue/   .

Either THE SON OF FRANKENSTEIN or FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN was the first in the series I saw as a kid in the 1950s. I saw them both, probably SON first. Loved them both.

Bela is older, yes, however he is also playing an older and a weaker monster with Ygor’s brain instead of the brain the Karloff monster had. The monster is at least twenty if not thirty years older than than the monster seen in FRANKENSTEN.

For me, Lugosi is spot on in this film. It would be neat if, for a future iteration, a voice impressionist could restore Bela’s line. I know Universal looked for and could not find the scenes of Bela talking.

Bela was paid less than Karloff for the work he did in all of his Universal Films. Karloff had the better agent, Myron Selznick.

Both Boris and Bela have names that are still burning bright. Other higher paid stars are forgotten today. Boris and Bela are eternal.

Glenn Strange, in THE HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN, THE HOUSE OF DRACULA and ABBOTT AND COSTELLO MEET FRANKENSTEIN played the monster as a murderous behemoth so reduced in power there’s not much he can do.

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