My name… is… Frankenstein!

December 14, 2006 at 1:06 am (Uncategorized)

boyle3.jpegIn 1974, I went to see the movie “Young Frankenstein” maybe a dozen times. Every week, I scrounged up money wherever I could so I could get back to the theater one more time. I may have snuck in once or twice because I couldn’t get my hands on any loot yet the jones for the flick was too great to be ignored. “Young Frankenstein” and all its gloomy hilarity became an obsession.

Decades later, I have a copy of the flick on DVD. I watch it a couple times a year and pick it up on late night television whenever I can. It’s a movie that never gets old for me. It’s downright hysterical (Madeline Kahn getting boned by the big guy and breaking into “Sweet Mystery of Life” is just goddamn funny), yet the movie caters to my need for horror, too. The monstrous castle carved out of a mountaintop; the dusty, basement laboratory where unholy work is undertaken; the sight of the lifeless monster rising from the table with its zipper neck, its massive features, its ferocious frown.

I get chills. And whenever I think of the movie, I see the face of the creature, all gray and ghastly, both pboyle2.jpgmenacing and sad. The monster, above all, was played to perfection. And though Peter Boyle will probably be remembered as the crotchety dad in “Everybody Loves Raymond,” he’ll always be the reanimated dead guy who boned Madeline Kahn, had a painful cigar with Gene Hackman and did a riotous two-step to “Putting on the Ritz.”

It takes a giant of a man to upstage the likes of Gene Wilder, Cloris Leachman, Terri Garr, Marty Feldman and Kahn. It takes a monsterous performance to produce a character that achieves something close to immortality. That’s Boyle in the form of Frankenstein’s creation.
Boyle died Tuesday at 71. I’m inspired to watch the movie again even though I watched it on Halloween just two months ago. Peter Boyle is dead. Long live the monster.




  1. AO said,

    My favorite line from Young Fankenstein:

    Frankenstein, Igor and Inga in front of HUGE castle doors]
    Dr. Frederick Frankenstein: What knockers.
    Inga: Oh, thank you doctor.

  2. Crystal said,

    Never seen it. Mark, you’ll have to let me borrow the DVD. I have a Bela Lugosi and the East Side kids once you can borrow! (You’ve probably seen it)!

  3. LaFlamme said,

    Hey, any time. I have it right here. *touching the disc lovingly*

  4. Linda said,

    Will you take her firstborn child as collateral, or do you actually let it out of your sight?

  5. Bobbie said,

    He says that he’ll let it out of his sight, but be on the lookout for prowlers around the window. That would be Mark looking in the window to make sure that you’re treating the DVD with utmost respect.

  6. Nadine said,

    I believe it is pronounced “Fronkensteen”, ūüôā

  7. Walter said,

    We have an unconfirmed report that a Mark L. was seen exiting a Wood St. apartment building, yesterday, shortly before a break-in was reported by a female who states she awoke to find a sick-o masterbating over her.

  8. LaFlamme said,

    Just doing my part to rub out insomnia.

  9. LaFlamme said,

    And you can call me “EYE gore.”

  10. AO said,

    Ahhh…good one. “EYE gore”…

    I just started my Christmas shopping tonight. Please, pray for me.

  11. Martha said,

    Yike AO.. I have most of mine done.
    I even have my christmas cards addressed.. all 80+ of them

  12. AO said,

    I know…I’m bad. Just haven’t had the free time. Oh well, I’m hoping it will all come together. Hope nobody minds getting coal this year!

  13. Martha said,

    Is Mark still here? I just sent you a test email

  14. Robert said,

    Oh can I have one of Abby’s brain…don;t you all remember “abby normal”…

  15. Monsters said,

    An old favorite. Saw it in the theater, alone, back in the day as a kid. Have it on DVD right now. Essential viewing!


    • Janessa said,

      Field, I am very glad you posted this. After your previous post, it couldn’t have come at a better time to check my mind and hen-artad to reflect on what it means to be a “Field Negro”. It’s much more than the name of your blog. Thanks. B#PS. Please tell what your colleague had to say about your blog.

  16. Jerry Z. said,

    “My name is Frankstein!..”.one of my favorite scenes of all time!

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