The Summer Movie Season is now in spitting distance, and this year’s slew of lumbering mega-movies is plodding clumsily into view. But before everyone picks apart the (presumable) goofiness of big-budget behemoths like Speed Racer and The Incredible Hulk, let’s think back to four years ago, when a tiny-yet-sublime scrap of summer movie dumbness went unnoticed and, amazingly, un-goofed-upon.
It’s 2004. The summer blockbuster Van Helsing is in theaters. Monster-hunter Gabriel Van Helsing, played by Wolverine, takes on The Wolfman, Dracula and Frankenstein’s Monster. The quality of this picture will be debated for the ages, but the critics have neglected to mention this colossally insane film’s most colossally insane detail: Frankenstein’s Monster wears a coat that is stitched together from other coats. As the Monster is made of pieces of discarded corpses, so too is his coat assembled from the pieces of discarded coats. That is, to say…
Frankenstein wears a Frankencoat.
Where did this Frankencoat come from? Did Frankenstein’s monster feel compelled by unknowable dark forces to create a coat as fragmented as his soul? Or did Igor, the servant of Dr. Frankenstein himself, save the coats of the corpses from which they assembled the monster, then match each coat-part to the corpse-part from which it came to create a truly perfect fit? Or did an overzealous costumer say to her staff, “Everybody, check this out. I am such a genius. Since Frankenstein is all stitched together, I was thinking, wait for it… that it totally makes sense Frankenstein’s coat would totally be stitched together too. Hello? Is that genius? I know, I know! Right? Right? Am I right? Why is everyone laughing? Just do it!”
Why did they stop at a Frankencoat? Where was Dracula’s cape that had pictures of bats all over it? Shouldn’t the Wolfman have had a jacket that changed from human skin to wolf fur under the light of the full moon? Why didn’t the Mummy (was he in this movie?) wear a t-shirt that had a picture of a Mummy on it and read “The Mummy” in a spooky font?
So, the next time you are goofing on a big summer blockbuster, and you think you’ve noticed something so profoundly moronic that it will never be out-stupid-ed, please, take a moment to remember The Frankencoat. I think you’ll be glad you did.