Classic Movies · Stuff You Should Know

Tell them Boris sent you!


In one half-hour, Turner Classic Movies will kick off a mini-marathon of films starring the one-and-only Boris Karloff. Most of the films consist of quickies he made for Columbia (I think Universal loaned him out once a year to do films for the Lady with the Torch) but there are a few nuggets among the dross: The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932), The Black Room (1935), The Walking Dead (1936), and Isle of the Dead (1945) are the ones that immediately come to mind. But as a lifelong Karloff devotee, I can state this with absolute certainty: he made have made some bad films, but he never made a boring one. The schedule as follows:

06:00 AM Behind the Mask (1932)
07:15 AM The Mask of Fu Manchu (1932)
08:30 AM The Ghoul (1933)
10:00 AM The Black Room (1935)
11:15 AM The Walking Dead (1936)
12:30 PM The Man They Could Not Hang (1939)
01:45 PM The Man With Nine Lives (1940)
03:00 PM Before I Hang (1940)
04:15 PM The Ape (1940)
05:30 PM The Devil Commands (1941)
06:45 PM Isle of the Dead (1945)

The reason why I’m pointing this out is that this will provide fodder for the Boris Karloff Blogathon, being sponsored by Frankensteinia: The Frankenstein Blog, a weblog devoted to the actor’s immortal horror role by Pierre Fournier, a Canadian comic book writer and artist. I sent Pierre an e-mail letting him know that I was very interested in participating in the blogathon—something I don’t normally do, by the way, but it’s not because I’m a snob…I’m just way too disorganized to ever commit to contributing posts. (Ask Ed Copeland about my annoying habit of “getting things under the wire” sometime.) Since Pierre’s already included Thrilling Days of Yesteryear in the list of blogs that will contribute, I’m pretty much dedicated to the cause—but the events don’t kick off until November 23rd so I’m pretty sure I’ll have something by then. (For those of you who have just started a pool—I’m in for a couple of squares.) This means TDOY will devote at least one post to Boris; and since there are a few films on this list that I don’t yet have in the dusty archives TCM will be a grand place to start…plus I have that Karloff box set from Sony that I’ve been itching to open and I’ll even throw in some television guest appearances to seal the deal.

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