Published by: mike on 1st Oct 2017 | View all blogs by mike

 Last Friday I saw a musical production of ‘ Young Frankenstein‘   It has just begun a run on the London stage.   I must confess I enjoyed the show.  It seemed - to me  - to be a light hearted pastiche of American musicals,   A few weeks ago, Mell Brooks was  interviewed on ‘Today’  . (This is the morning news programme on BBC radio 4)   Brooks expressed an opinion that he could no longer produce such material owing to political correctness.  I notice that his comments have been repeated in newspapers.

     Mell Brooks may well be right. I do not know?   But I must live on a different planet.  Igor makes  it quite clear that big knockers refers to a pair of huge knockers on the door of Frankenstein’s  castle.  The phrase can have no other possible interpretation.  Those of a literary persuasion might feel the musical lacks the wit, subtlety and period resonance of a ‘ccrry-on film.’ A ‘ nice pair’  (pair) is open to far greater critical exegesis,

     Frankenstein was first performed on  the London stage in 1814  - a few weeks after Mary Shelley returned to England from Italy.  She saw the play of her own book!  (‘Mary Shelley’ by Miranda Richardson - pages 334-335)   I suspect Mell Brook’s production is close to the spirit of this early production - it is certainly  not  close to Shelley’s book.   In her biography, Richardson makes the point that the monster had entered into folklore by 1840.

      I wish the phrase ‘political correctness’ would disappear as the issues raised are trivialised.  This is no criticism of Mell Brooks whose intention is clearly to amuse.

      Of course, few Word Clouders can have seen this production, though it was originally staged in America.  I think the papers will review it in a few weeks time. This blog went on for about another 500 odd words giving my view of PC but I have spared you this. 



1 Comment

  • mike
    by mike 9 months ago
    It is difficult to see which section of society the musical denigrates? Any philosophical or religious arguments in Shelley's book are not considered and it is no longer a revenge tragedy. Nobody is killed. The set designer might be reproved and asked to check his historical facts. Did the yeomen of Eaten Europe have pitchforks of such a size.
    As far as I can remember, modern technology was not used in the production and the painted backdrops and stage machinery seemed tp belong to a different age.
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