When the horror movie icon visited my hometown back in the 1970s, he made an unforgettable impression…
The Hilarious House of Frightenstein was produced by our one and only TV station, CHCH.
This hour-long kids’ show combined the then-hip look and sound of psychedelia (retina-searing, kaleidoscopic “special effects” plus current Top 40 hits) with the mid-century sensibility of Famous Monsters of Filmland. (…)
Comedian Billy Van played most of the monsters. He was joined by a three-foot midget who struggled with his cue cards, a real live science professor who seemed to think he was on a serious program, an ever-changing assortment of reluctant zoo animals, and fan favorite Fishka Rais — actually an accomplished jazz singer back in his native South Africa — as green skinned, gentle giant Igor (what else?)
Frightenstein’s only real star was Vincent Price, who appears at the beginning and end of each episode, and reads mock-macabre poems and other interstitials.
What the heck was he doing there?