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starring Dr. Hal !
January 26, 2018 10:00pm
THE BAT, THAT FLITS at Close of Eve, Has left the Brain that won't Believe. --Wm. Blake. Yea, our fourth Show in the New Studio, this time with guests... First, after initial pedantry and poetry (Dylan Thomas), we bring on Rusty Rebar, the poet and self-styled "all-gay rodeo clown," with ambrosial poet Sugar, creator of sweet poetic confections. After recitations, we bring on another guest, KPFA's and RV's own Puzzling Evidence. We hear there's some kid out there on the radio calling himself Puzzling Evidence. Don't believe it! This one's the genuine article, about whom the David Byrne song was written, in fact. "Puzzo" and Dr, H. Owll chew the metaphorical fat for awhile, Rebar and Sugar make their adieus-- then we segue to a narrated movie on-show, reconstituting the Ask Dr. Hal! tradition. This is THE RETURN OF DRACULA, a most interesting entry... Discussion of the associated powers of Vampirism comes into it naturally, naturlich. This 1958 film features sinister Francis Lederer as Dracula. The female lead, Rachel, is played by blonde, English-accented Norma Eberhardt. It's elegantly filmed in black-and-white (though there is an unsettling color shot, only seconds long, of red blood fountaining when the vampire hunters drive a stake into the Undead former poor little blind girl Jennie Blake [Virginia Vincent] an unpleasant surprise for the viewer). Back in the day, this was released on a double bill with THE FLAME BARRIER. Real exterior locations are used for the setting of Carleton, California, though the familiar Bronson Canyon Cave, Ro-Man's hang-out, is also employed. All this takes us an extra hour, and we put off the pleasure of narrating FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE SPACE MONSTER to another show.
When shown on American television, this picture was titled CURSE OF DRACULA. In the UK it was released theatrically as THE FANTASTIC DISAPPEARING MAN. The picture, Vampirically Correct in most significant details, had the misfortune to come out the very same year that the great Christopher Lee single-handedly re-started the horror cycle with his dynamic portrayal of the Undead Count in THE HORROR OF DRACULA (U.S. title). But it has a certain integrity, as we discovered... Three hours, 59 minutes and 59 seconds of this. Yes, we played the Anthem, but you won't hear it.

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