December 2, 2013

Lobby Card degli orrori

Thought I was done with the Casa degli orrori ad campaign, but head-scratcher gems just keep popping up! 

In our two previous posts, we’ve seen how the Italian promotion for Universal’s Monster Rally of 1945, House of Dracula, generated fanciful posters and odd credits. Here’s one more, a lobby card, this time. 

The featured performer is Jane “Poni” Adams as, Nina, one of the most unusual characters in the Universal canon: A female hunchbacked assistant. On some of the American posters for the film, Nina, “The Hunchback!”, was listed as one of the film’s star creatures along with Frankenstein’s Monster, Dracula, Wolf Man and the Mad Doctor.

What’s weird about this lobby card — misspelled “Martha” aside — is the appearance at left on the painted framing art of the Frankenstein Monster’s old friend, Ygor! Originally played by Bela Lugosi, the broken-necked Ygor was a memorable character in Son of Frankenstein (1939) and its direct sequel, The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942), in which he was ultimately crushed to death, his brains saved and plopped into The Monster’s flat skull. Lugosi would go on to play The Monster himself in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943), and Glenn Strange took over the part with House of Frankenstein in 1944.

Perhaps the artist was given a package of stills and advertising material from previous Frankenstein films to play with as he worked on the lobby card design. Ygor’s rough and menacing features, combined with a desolate, windswept mansion and dead trees made for a nice, spooky background. The art, unfortunately uncredited, is rather good.

1 comment:

DadaHyena said...

I loved Nina; I would have been much happier if she ended up with Larry Talbot instead of the bland blonde!