Carry On!

Frankenstein's Daughter Carrying a WomanSeveral of my fellow Morlocks have recently related some of their favorite spooky movies and related topics to commemorate Halloween.  I stumbled upon this particular subject while researching something else, but it’s just too good to ignore.  Did you ever think much about scenes in movies where monsters — here’s our Halloween connection — carry beautiful (of course!) women around?  Well, maybe YOU haven’t, but lots of fellas have, and though it’s no doubt a genuine fetish of sorts, it’s completely fascinating and an intriguing sociological study.  And the images are amazing!

If you’re at all a fan of B-Movies, then you’ve probably seen so many of these images that you hardly notice them anymore.  However, take a gander at posters for the genre and you’ll realize how imbued with the monsters-carrying-women theme it is.  A lot of this obsession with babes-in-arms is strictly damsel in King Kong poster with Kong carrying Ann Darrowdistress-ville, a literary and artistic trope that appeals on countless levels, not the least of which is the basic man+woman relationship.  And if big man carries helpless/overcome woman, then all the better for the hero to feel heroic about it and the woman to feel well and truly saved. 

With B-Movies, if it’s a monster who’s doing the carrying the whole hero thing gets tossed on its head, and it’s Detail from Day the Earth Stood Still Posterdoubly scary and effective, isn’t it?  The classic rescue pose gets perverted into a monstrous abduction — and possibly worse! — scenario, all the better to get movie audiences, especially impressionable teens and thrill-seekers, into the seats.  Beautiful women apparently were in constant danger from a steady stream of robots, aliens, mummies, and the occasional mutant human who were ready to snatch these lovelies up, once they had fainted dead away, of course. 

As a robot and monster fan, I really love this stuff.  I will recommend one marvelous fan website called In My Arms, maintained by Lord Of the Carry, featuring countless poster images, video Invasion of the Saucer Men poster detailcaptures, pulp fiction book covers, comic book illustrations and much more.  It’s a delightful compendium of the genre and if you are at all amused by the theme, you will love it.  There’s also a nice page of images at this site that you might Robby the Robot from Forbidden Planet in a carrycare to check out.  This is truly a visual experience.  Either you look at this stuff and get why it’s great, or you’ll think it’s silly.  If I were a beautiful woman prone to fainting — and I’m neither! — and if it were the 1950s, I’d be looking over my shoulder waiting impatiently for some beast to come along and carry me off!  It would sure beat life in the post-war suburbs, now wouldn’t it?  (And come to think of it, what do these images say about the post-war men who created most of them?  Whose fantasies were these, anyway?  Calling all shrinks…!) 

Happy Halloween, everybody!  

6 Responses Carry On!
Posted By Pax Romano : October 29, 2007 11:22 pm

In the Rocky Horror Picture show, there is an homage to that very image toward the film's end when the "monster" (Rocky) takes the fallen mad scientist (Frank) in his arms.  Of course Frank is a cross dressing "sweet transvestite from Transylvania", so it all kind of makes sense.

Posted By Pax Romano : October 29, 2007 11:22 pm

In the Rocky Horror Picture show, there is an homage to that very image toward the film's end when the "monster" (Rocky) takes the fallen mad scientist (Frank) in his arms.  Of course Frank is a cross dressing "sweet transvestite from Transylvania", so it all kind of makes sense.

Posted By Mike Burleson : October 30, 2007 6:21 am

As you say, a fetish, and it was also based on a real fear in the days of colonialism  for the "natives" to revolt and capture European women.

Posted By Mike Burleson : October 30, 2007 6:21 am

As you say, a fetish, and it was also based on a real fear in the days of colonialism  for the "natives" to revolt and capture European women.

Posted By MDR : October 31, 2007 9:28 am

The first movie title that came to mind when I read your article was Swamp Thing but, after looking it up on the Internet, I realized that the film I was really thinking about was Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954).Happy Halloween fellow Morlocks!

Posted By MDR : October 31, 2007 9:28 am

The first movie title that came to mind when I read your article was Swamp Thing but, after looking it up on the Internet, I realized that the film I was really thinking about was Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954).Happy Halloween fellow Morlocks!

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