August 30th National Frankenstein Day

Who is the best know monster of all time? Well, Frankenstein of course! He has been portrayed in so many movies, television shows and books that he has become an icon. He is played scary, funny, sad, happy, you name it and someone has performed it that way.

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We celebrate it today on Mary Wollenstone Shelley’s birthday, August 30th, 1797. she actually wrote Frankenstein in 1818 and my research shows she was in Scotland at the time. She was a novelist, short story writer, dramatist, essayist, biographer and a travel writer but no doubt she is best remember for The Modern Prometheus, the original title of Frankenstein.

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I am curious if she ever made anywhere near  the money others did off of her work. And though I do not know it for sure, I doubt there is any copyright applied to her work anymore.  There have also been stories about her getting the story from a relative who was actually trying to ring the dead back to life.  I don’t know if there is any truth to it or not but it is a wild story to just dream up.

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I also wonder if she had any idea it would become as popular as it did. And would she have taken offense at the way the world has treated her character. We probably will never know… unless, someone is secretly working on bringing her back.

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How to celebrate – Read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. Watch a Frankenstein movie. See if you can find any other works of Mary Shelley’s to read.

 

 

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August 30th National Frankenstein Day

It’s hard to imagine the world without Frankenstein. For those of us born after 1818, the day Frankenstein was published, he has been there for us, creeping around every corner, hiding in the woods or knocking on our door for some candy.

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Written by Mary Wollenstone Shelly this character has become a classic. You could say there’s a little of all of us in Frankenstein. An arm here, a leg there a brain or two from anywhere, he is the ultimate man-made monster brought to life by Doctor Frankenstein in his laboratory before the invention of electricity, cars or M & M’s.

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Of course he has been pitted against nearly every other European monster… the Wolfman, Dracula, Charlie Chaplin. Well, at least he had more lines in his films than Charlie Chaplin. He normally won proving brawn stands for something but he loses in the end to man. Of course he is a man, many men, so I guess you could say he loses to himself.

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One of my all time favorite movies is Young Frankenstein, a spoof about the monster and his creator. I still break up when Dr. Frankenstein finds out that Igor got him the brain of a guy named Abby Normal for his monster.

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We celebrate today because it is Mary Shelley’s birthday, August 30th, though she was born in 1797. You have to wonder what nightmare she had before writing this one down. However, it became a classic she will be remembered forever for.

How to celebrate – Read the original Frankenstein. Watch Young Frankenstein. Set up a Frankenstein movie marathon. (You might want to set aside several days)

October 28th Frankenstein Day

It is fitting that the last Friday in October should be Frankenstein Day. It was created by Ron MacCloskey in 1997 when he also created “The Franky” which he proudly gave to the person who best promoted the classic Frankenstein. He picked a Friday because it started with FR just like Frankenstein.

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Frankenstein was created by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley in 1818 completed by the time she turned 21. I’ll bet she was a real fun date! It is set in the fictional Transylvania, though Shelley herself was English. Most of us know the story well enough by now. The monster created in a castle on a mountain during a lightning storm.

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Of course Frankenstein wasn’t really the monsters name. He was named for Victor Frankenstein, the doctor who created him from spare parts he found laying around. An arm from Bill, leg from Rudy, brain from Abbey Normal (sorry, couldn’t resist). Since all his body parts came from so many people he probably would have a name like Billy Joe Hamilton Marcus III.

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So many people have made money from the original book. The movie industry, costumers, audio recording artists, and so on have all made a pretty penny off something so ugly. But then, we all like to be scared, at least a little bit, and in the day Shelley had created one of the most frightening creatures ever to exist. It is remarkable that even after all these years the imagination of one woman could still stir the the hearts of so many over 150 years later.

How to celebrate – Do your best to promote the Frankenstein monster, “The Franky” is still being awarded! Read Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein”. Watch one of the many “Frankenstein movies.