Super Mates 106: House of Franklin-Stein Part 2

Visit the Hammer House of Franklin-Stein! Chris and Cindy discuss the 1957 Hammer Horror classic The Abominable Snowman, starring Forrest Tucker and genre legend Peter Cushing, on an expedition to the Himalayas to find the mysterious Yeti!

Then the Snowman comes to Gotham, when Batman clashes with a frozen foe in Batman #337 by Gerry Conway, Roy Thomas, and Jose Luis Garcia Lopez (Praised Be His Name)! The Dark Knight tracks his enemy to Tibet in the sequel by Conway and Irv Novick, from Detective Comics #522!

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Clip credits:

The Abominable Snowman (1957) directed by Val Guest, music by Humphrey Searle

“Batman Theme” from Power Records

“Yeti Stomp” from The Backyardigans

14 responses to “Super Mates 106: House of Franklin-Stein Part 2

  1. Thanks for covering ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN! I really like that movie and as you guys talked about, it’s fairly obscure in the Hammer pantheon. That trailer clip you played is funny, every time the narrator adds “…of the Himalayas” you can almost hear the resignation in his voice. “Why am I saying this?”

    I, too, have heard those rumors about Forrest Tucker. (He should have flipped the first initials of his name). He’s very funny in AUNTIE MAME and kinda terrifying as a mountain man in an obscure western called BARQUERO.

    I am a Forrest Sucker for Yeti/Sasquatch stories (often, movies and/or docs on them are not very good), so this episode was great fun for me. I agree with Cindy, Batman letting his cape flap around while skiing on a mountain is profoundly silly. But still looks cool.

    1. Yeah, that trailer narrator is also REALLY trying to sell how scary the film is. Even by the standards of the day, it’s pretty light on “terror”. It’s nothing like Curse of Frankenstein or Dracula, or a William Castle film.

      Torrest Fu…er…never mind. After being impressed with him in this film, I’m down for more Tucker. Well, not like THAT, but you get my drift!

      Is this the only good Yeti movie? I can’t think of another. Anyone else know of one?

  2. Cool episode (no pun intended)! I’ve never seen the movie but definitely plan to check it out. I like Peter Cushing a lot and the movie sounds fun.

    I think that I had those issues of Batman and Detective Comics back in the day. The artwork is beautiful especially in the Batman issue. I love the cover of him skiing. Without the context of the story, one might think from the cover that Batman is out on a recreational skiing holiday and runs into an abominable snowman. Seeing Batman on any type of skis makes it hard for me not to think of Surf’s Up Joker’s Under (one of my favorite episodes of Batman 66) but the snow skiing also gives me 1970s/1980s James Bond vibes from films like The Spy Who Loved Me. Klaus Kristin had a very 1970s/early 1980s look about him too. I like this Bronze Age era of Batman because it still retained some of the fun aspects of the Silver Age while being more serious albeit without the full darkness that would come later in the post-Crisis era.

    1. I think that’s why the Bronze Age is my sweet spot too. The stories are a bit more mature, and aimed at a more sophisticated audience, but for the most part are accessible to kids, and as you put it, still fun. No strum and drang here!

      Definitely give the movie a shot! It’s a great watch!

  3. i never even heard of this yeti movie but it sounds to me like the LAma IS the yeti!
    I Liked Batman in the comics not running into the BIG FOES all the time ICE in winter in gotham should’nt make you think of ONE GUY. Heck before I was 13 I ONLY had two comics with Batman vs Joker and one was THE HULK TEAM UP. it makes it easier to sell dectective if Batman has more than 5 foes

    1. Well, there’s more than one yeti (we see at least three in the film), so he could be ONE of them, I guess. But there’s definitely some connection between them.

      I get variety, but if Batman is the World’s Greatest Detective, you think’d he eliminate the obvious culprits first, which would be Mr. Freeze, Captain Cold, or any number of ice/cold-based villains.

  4. I had no idea Forrest Tucker ever appeared in any non-US productions, much less a Hammer horror flick. This one’s definitely on my radar now. Otherwise – and this shows my age – Tucker will always be ‘Kong’ to me (when are you guys going to cover the Ghostbusters TV show? Or have you already and I forgot? ….)
    Also, Cindy should know that I can relate about fainting, or coming close to it, when someone tries to jab me with a needle to draw blood – it’s the main reason I’ve never been able to give blood.
    Great choice of thematically tied Batman stories, by the way; I’ve never read these, but find myself quite interested now. Although I have to say that it’s unfortunate that – given the leitmotif of alpine sports – a way was not found to bring ski star Molly Post (from the original Ra’s al Ghul story) into this one!
    And speaking of al Ghul and the question of finding the printer for that Bat stationery, maybe in the DCU, like ours, superhero-themed merch is sold, so Batman just used that.

    1. I think Ghostbusters would make for a fun episode of Saturday Morning Fever! I’m sure one of us remembers it enough to cover it. My memories are pretty vague.

      Good catch on Molly Post! She could have given Batman intel on Kristin’s activities.

      Batman using store-bought stationary just takes the fun out of it! That’d be like taking his cowl off before he put on a rubber disguise!

      1. On the Saturday morning Ghostbusters, all 15 episodes are posted on YouTube; I (re)watched them a few years ago during the pandemic – it’s honestly not a great show, but I still found it entertaining enough.

      2. I disagree. It may not be very Batman to buy the stationery off the shelf, but it’s hecka Bruce Wayne. Here’s a need we meet by spending money in the free market!

        Also, he thinks all the merchandise branded with his logo is cool.

  5. Okay Franklins, great show as usual. The movie’s on my list now and the comics — well, they’ve been in my short boxes for a long time. When I was in single digits, some of it went over my head. Later, I wondered if I actually remembered the story right. Yep, I did. VERY strange. Think the Comics Code people thought maybe they didn’t have to tell anybody not to do that?

    One complaint, though: Batman is not guilty of any kind of manslaughter here, involuntary or otherwise. If someone is trying to kill you and has any real chance of doing so, and you kill them back, that’s called self-defense, one form of justifiable homicide. I know Batman holds himself to a higher standard than the law when it comes to violence (and to no ethical standard whatsoever when it comes to collecting evidence). However, the law remains the same. And in this case, it doesn’t matter if you’re in New Jersey, Florida, Kentucky, or the DC Universe-specific nation of Austria-Switzerland. In fact, if an enraged, murderous, mutant half-breed yeti with greater than human strength and speed — and big teeth and claws and Iceman powers — is trying to kill you, and you manage to kill him with nothing but a flare, that is more than just self-defense. That is a feat!

    Finally, I have a no-prize theory for the Austria-Switzerland discrepancy. The two countries share a border, as well as a mountain range. Bats started his hunt in one country and did his yeti-dropping trick in another. This story was before the EU was what it is today, and I don’t think Switzerland’s a member anyway, but I’m betting that border’s not too heavily guarded, regardless.

    1. Glad to hear folks are eager to check out The Abominable Snowman! It really is a great little flick.

      Good point on the self-defense alabi. I was honestly egging things on for humorous effect, but Batman sure seems to be trying to convince himself that Kristin was TRYING to get himself killed.

      I meant to mention the proximity of Austria and Switzerland, but again it was more fun to poke at the inconsistencies. Just like old Marvel comics, the No-Prizes are for the listeners to chime in with. So thanks for providing those, Captain!


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