Late Night Chills and Afternoon Thrills...
Son of Terrible Movies Promo: Jesse James Meets Frankenstein's Daughter
from The Cinema 4 Pylon on Vimeo.
from The Cinema 4 Pylon on Vimeo.
First was a weekday matinee show that ran at 3:00 pm on CBS affiliate KTVA-11. I don't remember the name of the program or if it even had a title. This is strange because the films it showed were never to be forgotten by me. The program aired classic (or non-classic, depending on your viewpoint) horror and science-fiction movies, and chiefly from Universal, AIP and Toho. As a result, this is where I got my basic education on the films from those studios. It's where I finally got to see those Dracula, Frankenstein, Mummy, Wolf Man and Creature from the Black Lagoon films I was reading about in the then-waning days of the original run of Famous Monsters of Filmland Magazine. I also was able to catch the bulk of the original Showa period of Godzilla and other kaiju films from Toho. Other favorites which I would first see on this program were The Manster, The Werewolf, The Monster that Challenged the World, Fiend Without a Face, Son of Kong, The Green Slime, This Island Earth, and most importantly, The Thing from Another World. And yeah, this is where The War of the Gargantuas became such a thing for me.
The CBS Late Movie
Found on YouTube.
But it was the movies that I saw occasionally in this time slot that had me staying far too late in my early years. Some of my favorites were Killdozer, Help!, A Hard Day's Night, Night of the Lepus, Head, Mako: Jaws of Death, Willard, Frogs, The Giant Spider Invasion, Ben, Yellow Submarine, Sssssss!, Who's Minding the Store?, The Disorderly Orderly, and Tarzan and the Great River.
The Lucky 13 Movie
Because I started watching this show much younger than the other programs, I often saw it due to the kindness of assorted babysitters (including the great Mrs. B) in my younger years. As I mentioned, the films were more mainstream at times (they showed a lot of melodramas, and there were many that I never cared for, which would inevitably cause me to wander off to play instead). But the ones that caught my attention did so in a magical way.
My main introduction to the films of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, Bob Hope, and a lot of westerns was due to The Lucky 13 Movie. Favorites for me included Stanley and Livingstone, The Crimson Pirate, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, When Worlds Collide, The Naked Jungle (with those scary army ants!), The Court Jester, Irwin Allen's version of The Lost World, Five Weeks in a Balloon, Boy's Town, Jim Thorpe: All-American, A High Wind in Jamaica, and the movie version of the Batman TV series, a show which had been my favorite series since I was toddler. (Not joking -- the proof is in my baby book...)
The World's Most Terrible Movies
But somewhere between midnight and 1:00 a.m., depending on the length of the 10:00 p.m. feature, The World's Most Terrible Movies would start. I have written about The World's Most Terrible Movies at length on this website. Doing so put me in the acquaintance of an individual who was responsible for the show back in that time, Richard Gay, who contacted me and eventually sent to me a disc full of old promotional clips from TWMTM and some others (such as The Lucky 13 Movie) with which he had responsibility on the station at the time.
To read my full ongoing articles about this show, click on the following titles: