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  • STRUCK BY LIGHTNING was a fairly amusing premise that was never fully explored before it got yanked by CBS-TV. Jack Elam as Frank, caretaker of a New England inn who was in actually the Frankenstein Monster, was genius casting. Jeffrey Kramer as Ted Stein, a high school science teacher and the last living descendant of Dr. Frankenstein, was actually pretty funny. Stein was trying to discover the secret formula to the elixir that keeps Frank alive & must be administered every 75 years, or the monster starts to disintergrate. "You see my eyes?" Frank asks Ted. "In five more years, I'll look like a catfish!" The inn is actually Castle Frankenstein, brought over from Germany by Ted's late grandfather, who went senile and died before passing along the formula for Frank's elixir. In one episode, Ted leases the castle to a company filming a horror movie. Seeing the actor playing Count Dracula in full costume and make-up, Frank attempts to attack him, telling Ted, "He still owes me $20!" Seeing the green-skinned, flat-headed, neck-bolted Monster, Frank laments, "You have ONE bad hair day ...!" In another episode, a doctor examining an ill Frank is shocked to find stitches completely encircling his neck. "These look like railroad tracks!" the doctor exclaims. Ted tries to pass them off as scars from a tonsilectomy, but the doctor points out that tonsils are removed from the INSIDE, and asks who performed the surgery. "Um, YOU did," Frank says, and the doctor quickly tries to change the subject, alluding to his "drinking days." The show's title refers to the way Frank proves to Ted that he really IS The Monster. Raising his arms in front of a window and growling, a bolt of lighning crashes through and strikes his back. Turning around to show the smoking hole in his coat, Frank comments, "I HATE doing that!" I'm not sure if any more episodes were made besides the three that aired, but a nice DVD collection of whatever aired would be a great novelty! Alas, much like Lon Chaney's LONDON AFTER MIDNIGHT, I fear this series is lost forever.
  • I remember this show! I thought it was great and so funny ! What I'd like to know is how can shows as crappy as the Morphin Rangers can drag on forever when shows like this one can vanish without a warning after just three episodes. Jack Elam had an hysterical role in this series as Frankenstein's Monster trying to live down his past and forget the novels and the movies and just live a normal life. Maybe it was just too funny and too good and the idiot network execs wanted to pull it before the creators ran out of ideas. If that was the case, then they should have risked it. Elam deserved one good memorable role before he leaves this plane of existence.
  • I remember seeing the commercial for this show when I was a little kid.

    I remember something like this: Jack Elam is standing there with smoke coming out of him, when someone asks him, "What happened?" He replies, "I was, uh, struck by lightning," real deadpan-like.

    Am I just making that up? Or did it really happen?

    So here you go...the guidelines say you have to have ten lines of text. How can you do that for a show that only lasted three episodes and doesn't ever even make it onto those "Worst TV shows of all time" lists? I've already said everything I remember about this show that everyone on earth seems to have forgotten.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This series definitely deserves a DVD release - particularly in the US, where it was axed after just three episodes. And where I believe it was ahead of its time.

    I am British - and we got to see all eleven eps when it came up for syndication, the year after Tx in America. Granted it was shown at "kiddie hour" - but it quickly gained a cult audience, because of its star, Mr Elam.

    Now I'm not saying it was a classic - but it was far better than many comedies that ran for years. The fact it only took up a total of four and a half hours of my life - thirty years ago - and I still recall it, says something.

    After years of playing villains (although he had once had a comedic role, in "The Twilight Zone") Jack's talent for comedy first emerged in 1968, in "Once Upon A Time In The West" - a serious movie, but one in which Jack turned in a knowing performance.

    This lead immediately to an all-out comedy turn in "Support Your Local Sheriff" - after which he increasingly turned to it. And his extraordinary visage was perfect for the monster in "Struck By Lightning" - for which he needed little makeup!

    While much of the writing on "Struck By Lightning" was pedestrian, it had a number of good lines - and even when things flagged, Jack's gurning performance would still make you laugh.

    So come on, Paramount/CBS - give us the box set (we'll settle for it on two disks) of "Struck By Lightning" - or Frank'll GET you!
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I remember watching this when I was 4 years old living in Thornton Heath, England! I would have sworn to you that I watched more then the 3 episodes that were made! Goes to show that memories aren't everything! This definitely had a lot of potential! Stupid IMDb wants 10 lines - I'll try my best! I seem to remember this was put on a weekend in the UK! Could it have been on a Sunday when nothing else was on - other than Bonanza? Or was it put on the mid-afternoon on a Saturday when out of the three channels we had, Sport was on the main 2, leaving this to wile the way of non-sports fans? More info on the History of this show would be much appreciated! You older(30+ year old's) US TV fans may think you have it bad but most of the best TV shows I remember as a kid were imports! Friday nights was a prime time over here - I remember really liking 'Bring'em back alive!'
  • Another one hit wonder from the late '70s, it's amazing how desperate the networks were for new show ideas. Especially if they have to rip off Mary Shelley for sitcom ideas.

    "Struck by Lightning" may bring a smile to the lips of Frankenstein aficionados, but it obviously didn't do much for anyone else, as this series detailed how a descendant (Kramer) of the late doctor discovers his heritage, thanks to the caretaker (Elam) of the inn he's inherited. By the way, did I mention the caretaker was actually Frankenstein's Monster??

    Of course, if you're going to cast Frankenstein's monster in a sitcom, (*)Elam has the face for it as well as the comic timing. And I do remember a few moments when I actually got a laugh from this one-timer series (all due, in large, to Elam). But this is just another example of a one-idea show stretched out too long to make a good series.

    By and large, "Struck by Lightning" will never make you forget "The Addams Family".

    One star, for Elam.

    (*) = Sorry about that face remark, Jack. But It IS why they hired you, you know.