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Frankenstein is the title of a gothic novel by Mary Shelley, first published in 1818 (and revised in 1831). The work focuses on a scientist's quest to create new life from dead matter, and along with Bram Stoker's Dracula, has become one of the iconic horror texts, adapted into dozens of films. The original 1931 film from Universal Studios starred Boris Karloff as the monster.
The term "Frankenstein" initially referred to the monster's creator, scientist Victor Frankenstein. However, following the film's success, "Frankenstein" has been popularly used to refer to the monster. Make-up artist Jack Pierce's design of a square-headed, bolt-necked brute has become the standard depiction of the monster, in contrast to the vaguely described, intelligent creature in the novel.
The cinematic depiction of the Frankenstein monster, and its 1935 sequel Bride of Frankenstein, have frequently been spoofed or referenced in Muppet productions.
- Statler and Waldorf are watching Beach Blanket Frankenstein on a TV in their box seats in episode 202 of The Muppet Show.
- The Muppets Go to the Movies included a sketch called The Nephew of Frankenstein, with Dr. Julius Strangepork as the scientist, and Fozzie Bear as his hapless nephew.
- The design of Mulch is an amalgam of the Hunchback of Notre Dame and the Frankenstein monster. In The Muppets Go to the Movies, Mulch takes on the role of the Frankenstein monster, while on Muppets Tonight, he assumes aspects of the hunchbacked assistant "Igor" as iconicized in films.
- In a Halloween themed comic book story from Muppet Magazine, Fozzie is transformed into Frankenbear and Piggy becomes the Bride of Frankenstein.
- Miss Piggy played "the Bride of Froggen-Schwein" opposite Kermit, as the monster, in a John E. Barrett photograph taken for The Miss Piggy Calendar 1982. The photo also appeared in the 1993 Muppet Trading Cards set, on the wall of the KMUP commissary in Muppets Tonight episode 207, and in the queue area for the Disney theme parks attraction Muppet*Vision 3D.
- The Muppet Babies episode "Dental Hyjinks" had a scene where the babies imagine Baby Fozzie going to the dentist in a spooky Frankenstein parody, with Baby Kermit in the role of Dr. Frogenstein and Baby Animal as the Tooth Monster. They use Baby Fozzie's loose tooth and zap it with lightning to give more power to the monster. Then Baby Gonzo shows up as Count Gonzula.
- In the Muppet Babies episode "This Little Piggy Went to Hollywood," Baby Piggy dreams of becoming a Hollywood star. During a song montage, she appears as the Bride of Frankenstein along with the monster on a blimp advertisement.
- Baby Gonzo appears as the Frankenstein monster in the 1991 Muppet Babies coloring book A Trip Through Time.
- Kermit appears as "Ker-Monster" in the 2000 video game Muppet Monster Adventure, along with Miss Piggy as "the Ghoulfriend," parodying the Frankenstein monster and his bride.
- Ivan the Villager in Statler and Waldorf: From the Balcony was based on the irate, pitchfork wielding villagers seen in the climax of Frankenstein.
- An American Greetings card from the Halloween season of 2006 used recycled images of Kermit and Piggy, spoofing a typical Frankenstein movie poster for the imaginary film "Frogenstein Lives!".
- The Disney-MGM Studios had planned a Muppet Movie Ride which would have featured a Frankenstein scene, but the concept was abandoned.
- A planned Muppet Halloween Special was to have featured Frankenstein and his Bride, among others, but the special was abandoned for what eventually became The Muppet Christmas Carol.
- Several Dr. Frankenstein-esque mad scientists, often with monsters, have been depicted in Sesame Street cartoons.
- Frankenstein's monster works for Speedy Delivery Service in The Muppet Show Comic Book #3. He does the heavy lifting for his turtle co-worker, as the deliver a large box to the Muppet Theater.
- In September 2010, The Muppets Kitchen with Cat Cora premiered on the Internet, with the episode Movie Night spoofing the classic starring Bunsen, Beaker and a frankfurter, gone bad, in Frankfurterstein, "coming to a kitchen near you."
- In a 2010 episode of Sesame Street, Abby Cadabby attempts to give Leela a princess-like hair style for a party she's going to. One of her spells puts Leela's hair in a style based on the Bride of Frankenstein.
- Bil Baird created arctic sequence puppets for Frankenstein (1981, Broadway play)
- Peter Baird was the puppet master for Frankenstein (1981, Broadway play)
- Roger Bart played Dr. Frederick Frankenstein in Young Frankenstein (2007, Broadway musical)
- Timothy Bateson played a hypnotized man in The Evil of Frankenstein (1964)
- Geoffrey Bayldon played a police surgeon in Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed (1969)
- Douglas Blackwell played Victor's father in a 1972 BBC radio version
- Peter Boyle played the Monster in Young Frankenstein (1974, film)
- Kenneth Branagh played Victor Frankenstein in Frankenstein (1994) which he also directed and co-produced
- Mel Brooks directed and co-wrote Young Frankenstein (1974, film)and produced, and wrote book, lyrics, and music for the 2007 Broadway production
- Helena Bonham Carter played Elizabeth in Frankenstein (1994, film)
- Alan Caso was the cinematographer for Frankenstein (2004, TV miniseries)
- John Cleese played Professor Waldman in Frankenstein (1994, film)
- Benedict Cumberbatch played Victor Frankenstein and his creature in Danny Boyle's stage adaptation of Frankenstein (2011)
- Robert De Niro played the Creature in Frankenstein (1994, film)
- Arthur Dignam played Bride of Frankenstein star Ernest Thesiger in Gods and Monsters (1998)
- Phyllis Diller played the Monster's Mate in Mad Monster Party? (1969)
- Fran Drescher voiced Eunice, the monster's mate in Hotel Transylvania (2012)
- Tracey Eddon performed stunts in Frankenstein (1994, film)
- Marty Feldman played Igor in Young Frankenstein (1974)
- Bridget Fonda played Mary Shelley in Frankenstein Unbound (1990)
- John Gielgud played the chief constable in Frankenstein: The Real Story (1973, TV) and the blind hermit in Frankenstein (1984, TV)
- John Glover played Henry Clerval in Frankenstein (1981, Broadway play)
- Robert Hardy played Professor Krempe in Frankenstein (1994, film)
- James V. Hart produced Frankenstein (1994, film)
- Ian Holm played Baron Frankenstein in Frankenstein (1994, film)
- John Hurt played Dr. Joe Buchanan in Frankenstein Unbound (1990)
- William Hurt played Professor Waldman in Frankenstein (2004, miniseries)
- Tor Isedal played the caretaker in Victor Frankenstein (1977)
- Kevin James voiced the Frankenstein monster in Hotel Transylvania (2012)
- Freddie Jones played Professor Richter in Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed (1969)
- Raúl Juliá played Dr. Victor Frankenstein in Frankenstein Unbound (1990)
- Madeline Kahn played Elizabeth in Young Frankenstein (1974, film)
- Irwin Keyes played the Monster in Frankenstein General Hospital (1988)
- Cloris Leachman played Frau Blücher in Young Frankenstein (1974, film)
- Jon Ludwig adapted Frankenstein for the stage
- Ian McNeice played Professor Krempe in Frankenstein (2004, miniseres)
- Alf Marholm played a priest in Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus (German radio, 1999)
- Andrea Martin played Frau Blucher in Young Frankenstein (2007, Broadway musical)
- James Mason played Dr. John Polidari in Frankenstein: The True Story (1973, TV)
- Frank Middlemass played a houseguest in Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed (1969)
- Megan Mullally played Elizabeth in Young Frankenstein (2007, Broadway musical)
- Vincent Price played the Invisible Man in Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948)
- Jean Rochefort played Victor Frankenstein in Frankenstein 90 (1984) and the blind man in Frankenstein (2004 miniseries)
- Ben Stein played Dr. Who in Frankenstein General Hospital (1988)
- David Warner played the Monster in Frankenstein (1984, TV)
- Gene Wilder played Dr. Fredrick Frankenstein in Young Frankenstein (1974, film) which he also co-wrote
- John Wood played the Creature in a 1994 BBC Classic Serial radio version