April 30, 2016

Toys in the Attic: Aurora Monster Models of the 1960s Part 2 'The Aurora 13' Frankenstein

The man that started it all! 
Aurora's first monster model,the Frankenstein Monster, rolled off the production slab in 1961and became an immediate success. Retailers sold the kits almost as fast as they could stock them, and the demand prompted Aurora to keep production running 24 hours a day. According to Aurora lore, the molds were worn out from so much use and had to be duplicated and replaced a number of times to keep up with demand.Turning out three kits per minute--more than 8,000 kits each day!

'The Aurora 13'  No. 1 Frankenstein
Relaxing by the shores of a lake one balmy spring day a group of friends were absorbed in an intriguing conversation which would give birth to the most fascinating monster story the world has ever known...so famous that a century after it was written it was made into a motion picture. "We will each write a ghost story". said Lord Byron to Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin, wife of the poet Shelly, from which evolved the frightening legend of Frankenstein. Penned in 1818, it is superior in literary and imaginative value to the rash of horror stories that followed it.

It is the hair-raising story of a monster created by the genius of a Doctor whose good intention it was to discover a formula rendering man invulnerable to disease. For defying the laws of nature, the Doctor was permanently entangled in a maze of horror worse than death itself.! "It was on the dreary night of November", it began. With an uneasy motion he opened his yellow watery eyes. He breathed hard and convulsive motion agitated his limbs. Monstrous in conception, he was a demoniacal resemblance of man!
   
In crossing the threshold of the supernatural the Doctor's peace of mind was forever lost, unable to seek solace from nightmarish agony when learning the creature had quit the laboratory. Big and clumsy, the monster lowered above full grown men and was shunned by a mankind revolted by his ugliness. Cloaked in the darkness of night the embittered invention called on the Doctor, begging relief of the frustrating loneliness he knew. Denied his wish, he avenged himself by claiming the innocent lives of those near and dear to his creator.
   
The tale is climaxed in a meeting held in the icy temperatures of the north where the Doctor suffered the last tortures of the damned and, before dying, in a weak voice related his tale of terror to the unbelieving crew of the ship that rescued him. When last seen the monster was borne on a raft carried by a rough tubulent sea, fading into the oblivion of a pitch black night."


Original Kit Issued: 1961 - 1968 as kit #423
Sculptor: Bill Lemon
Box art: James Bama
Plastic: Lt. Grey 
Box size: (1st ed.)13" X5" X 1-1/2” /  (2nd ed.) 13" X 4" X 2"
Re-Issued: 1969-75, 1983, 1991,1998 


Rare 1969 Frightening Lighting Strikes Dracula Box. When model was released with extra glow-in-the-dark parts






Frankenstein Glow in the Dark
1970-75 as Catalog #449 
Plastic: Black & Luminous
Box
Square box format 8.25"X8.25"X3.25"

Double-sided 5.25x13" die-cut cardboard store sign w/hanger hole at top center as made. Issued by Aurora to promote the initial release of the first five Universal Monsters model kits in 1963. Similar signs were made for Dracula, The Mummy, The Wolf Man and Creature from the Black Lagoon.


1963 Aurora catalog pages. First appearance by the monster kits






Toys in the Attic: Aurora Monster Models of the 1960s

Sources: 
Web: "Collecting Aurora Monsters" Dennis L. Prince
Web: Professor Plastiks "Aurora Monster Kit History"
Print: Aurora Model Kits by Thomas Graham
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