If you're a Halloweenie like me, then you're probably well aware of Rankin/Bass' 1967 classic stop motion movie Mad Monster Party (in the event that you're not I highly recommend a rental). But were you aware that there also exists a prequel? Released in 1972, Mad, Mad, Mad Monsters tells the story of how Frankenstein's Monster and met and married his Bride, in classic Rankin/Bass style of course.
Aside from the Karloff-esque Baron Frankenstein (this time NOT voiced by Karloff himself), most of the monsters have a slightly different appearance then their claymation counterparts but nonetheless share a common personality. Some changes to the cast include the exclusion of Peter Lorre-inspired, Yetch, in favor of a far less likeable hunchback named Igor and a loavable goof named Norman who stands in for Felix Flankin. Moving at a rapid pace, the story generally revolves around Igor falling for the Monster's Bride and trying to steal her away.
At a scant 75 minute runtime, the movie tends to move a non-stop pace with plenty of kooky creatures and puns; most of which hit the right mark between adult-oriented and kid-friendly thanks in part to Mad Magazine vet Lou Silverstone. Highlights include a running gag involving a mail man who's been tasked with delivering wedding invitations to each of the monsters and a married invisible man whose invisible wife goes around wearing hair rollers. Unfortunately, this is one film that sits alongside the animated adaptation of Ray Bradbury's Halloween Tree that has yet to see a well-deserved DVD transfer.
This article is part of the Countdown to Halloween blogathon, a month-long blogging marathon dedicated to honoring the Halloween season. For more information and a full list of participating sites, please visit www.countdowntohalloween.com.