The Horror Spoofs of Abbott and Costello

A Critical Assessment of the Comedy Team’s Monster Films


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About the Book

While Bud Abbott and Lou Costello are more famously known for their straight comedy routines, they did make a number of films in which horror played a crucial role. The first part of this critical reference examines the Abbott and Costello “Meet the Monsters” spoof films (Frankenstein, The Invisible Man, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and The Mummy). The second sections deals with Abbott and Costello’s films with horror elements that do not follow this formula: Hold That Ghost, The Time of Their Lives and Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff.
The plot of each film is examined in detail with special attention paid to the comedians’ styles of comedy, the effect of the horror scenes, and the place of the film in the Abbott and Costello canon. The reactions of critics (then and now) and the influences the films have had on the horror and comedy genres and on pop culture are also discussed. A lengthy introduction provides background on the lives of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello and the development of Universal Studios as the premier horror factory.

About the Author(s)

Jeffrey S. Miller, manages Rocket Video, Hollywood’s greatest video store. He has written articles for Filmfax, Television Chronicles and Midnight Marquee as well as over 100 documentaries on film history for Passport Productions. He has been an Abbott and Costello fan since childhood.

Bibliographic Details

Jeffrey S. Miller
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 251
Bibliographic Info: appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2004 [2000]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1922-7
Imprint: McFarland

Book Reviews & Awards

“detailed”—Communication Booknotes Quarterly; “entertaining…excellent”—Scarlet; “[a] fine book…all sorts of interesting facts…really pleasurable to read”—Cult Movies; “examines the duo’s foray into motion picture parody”—Film & History.