Weekend Reading

The Lady from the Black Lagoon by Mallory O’Meara

I’ve never been much for superheroes. If you’re talking about someone who can fly, wears a cape, and lives in an isolated fortress, give me Dracula over Superman any day of the week. You could say I’m more of a monster guy. And like most things, guys dominated the world of classic monsters and horror, both fiction and film. (Happy belated 200th birthday to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, by the way.) Milicent Patrick was an exception. As a special effects artist in the 1950s, Patrick designed the iconic monster from The Creature from the Black Lagoon. But instead of being remembered as a pioneer, her work was claimed by a petty (male) rival, and Patrick disappeared from cinematic history. Mallory O’Meara’s The Lady from the Black Lagoon (March 5) not only restores Patrick’s legacy, but also examines the age of classic movie monsters from a female perspective—a long overdue (and refreshing) point of view. —Jon Foro

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