“All right now, we’ll move in stagger fashion. We’ll circle the outer edges first and keep going round and round till we meet in the center.” And that’s called a “search grid?” Join this episode’s Grue-Crew – Chad Hunt, Daphne Monary-Ernsdorff, Doc Rotten, and Jeff Mohr – as they go for the winning combination of mad scientist and teenage angst in I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957).
Decades of Horror: The Classic Era
Episode 153 – I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957)
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A troubled teenager seeks help through hypnotherapy, but his evil doctor uses him for regression experiments that transform him into a rampaging werewolf.
- Director: Gene Fowler Jr.
- Writers: Herman Cohen, Aben Kandel
- Makeup Creator: Phillip Scheer
- Selected Cast:
- Michael Landon as Tony Rivers
- Yvonne Lime as Arlene Logan
- Whit Bissell as Dr. Alfred Brandon
- Charles Willcox as Jimmy (as Tony Marshall)
- Dawn Richard as Theresa
- Barney Phillips as Detective Donovan
- Ken Miller as Vic
- Cynthia Chenault as Pearl (as Cindy Robbins)
- Michael Rougas as Frank
- Robert Griffin as Police Chief P.F. Baker
- Joseph Mell as Dr. Hugo Wagner
- Malcolm Atterbury as Charles Rivers
- Eddie Marr as Doyle
- Vladimir Sokoloff as Pepe the Janitor
- Louise Lewis as Principal Ferguson
- S. John Launer as Bill Logan (as John Launer)
- Guy Williams as Officer Chris Stanley
- Dorothy Crehan as Mrs. Mary Logan
A young Michael Landon, just a few years before rising to fame as “Little Joe” Cartwright in Bonanza, stars as Tony Rivers, a troubled teen struggling with anger management. Whit Bissell is featured as Dr. Alfred Brandon, a psychologist (or mad scientist) with ulterior motives. Yes! Oh, yes, indeed! It’s the AIP/Herman Cohen campy classic, I Was a Teenage Werewolf. The Grue-Crew is in full Drive-In Theater mode for this one.
High-quality versions of I Was a Teenage Werewolf, streaming or physical media, are not available, but there is a reason. Susan Hart, the actress and widow of AIP co-founder James Nicholson, owns the rights to eleven AIP films outright: It Conquered the World (1956) and its remake Zontar, The Thing from Venus (1966); Invasion of the Saucer Men (1957) and its remake The Eye Creatures (1965); I Was a Teenage Frankenstein (1957); I Was a Teenage Werewolf (1957); The Amazing Colossal Man (1957); Terror from the Year 5000 (1958); Apache Woman (1955); The Oklahoma Woman (1956); and Naked Paradise (1957). She frequently negotiates rights for merchandise and theatrical showings, but physical media has not been updated for release in decades. You can, however, purchase a VHS tape of the movie.
Gruesome Magazine’s Decades of Horror: The Classic Era records a new episode every two weeks. Up next in their very flexible schedule, as chosen by Chad, is The Wasp Woman (1959). Yes, they’re sticking with 1950s B-movies, but moving from AIP/Herman Cohen on to Film Group/Roger Corman!
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To each of you from each of them, “Thank you so much for watching and listening!”