It’s back to the 80s and 90s for this double feature of raunchy giggles at the expense of the classic Robert Louis Stevenson novel.
JEKYLL & HYDE…TOGETHER AGAIN (1982)
Aah…one that aired regularly the year I got a job delivering newspapers and used the money to get cable in my bedroom. And it has all the perversion my mother was afraid I’d be watching.
I was sure Jekyll & Hyde…Together Again wouldn’t hold up 35 years later now that I’m an adult, but who am I kidding? I still have the sense of humor of a 14-year old (living in the 80s). If I cared, I’d be embarrassed at how much I laughed through this one.
The real reason this movie is still so funny is because star Mark Blankfield (Dracula: Dead and Loving It, The Midnight Hour, and the short-lived SNL knockoff Fridays) is an amazing physical comedian—and looks like a straight-eyed Marty Feldman. If this movie is bad it’s hard to tell because he makes it a brilliant one-man show. I can’t believe that his career never took off.
He plays Jekyll, a master brain surgeon trying to come up with a drug that will make brain surgery obsolete. Instead, he turns himself into the crass, crude, pervy, super horny Dr. Jekyll, whose also a major coke head with a snorting fingernail.
And that’s when Blankfield just takes off running with the insanity. Aside from the hilarity he brings, there’s a new wave club scene with moshing, Devo hats, and a girl performing a new wave song.
There’s an arcade loaded with classic games and the original sound effects, Hyde himself does a musical number, and there’s a classic black and white scene with the townsfolk chasing Jekyll. There’s even a rape joke, and I’m sorry, but I laughed at it.
Bess Armstrong is his girlfriend, the jerk doctor from the chronic fatigue episode of a The Golden Girls is his boss, the baseball player Blanche made wear women’s underwear on The Golden Girls plays…a cross-dressing gay doctor who finds love before the film ends, George Chakiris of West Side Story plays himself, plus there are fleeting appearances by Cassandra Peterson, Lin Shaye, and…the guy who played Merrill the convict on The Golden Girls. I’m seeing a pattern here, and I like it.
But most importantly, Robert Louis Stevenson, the author of the original classic on which the movie is based, makes a hilarious appearance from the grave. Or should I say…in the grave.
JEKYLL AND MS. HYDE (1995)
The director of To Die for II and Children of the Corn II goes horror sex spoof with this one, which is way more fun than it should be.
Tim Daly is a scientist who formulates perfumes for a living. His girlfriend is Lysette Anthony of Trilogy of Terror II. When Daly inherits a family science notebook, the trouble begins.
He uses the notes to create a new formula that causes him to turn into a woman…played by Sean Young.
Conveniently, a big client at work wanted a female to create a fragrance for women, so Ms. Hyde poses as Jekyll’s assistant whenever she comes out and starts to move in on his job.
The sexual gags and slapstick Three’s Company type situations are all in place, with Hyde bursting forth and going away at all the wrong times.
The funniest moments come with one of Jekyll’s coworkers, played by Harvey Fierstein, getting all confused because he’s gay and finds himself attracted to Ms. Hyde.
These days, the LGBTQ community would probably scream homophobia and transphobia if it knew this movie existed, but there used to be a time when gays had a backbone and embraced harmless humor that actually challenged mainstream perceptions about gender and sexuality–an important factor in how the equality movement came so far before Trump began setting it back 50 years.
The film also features Jeremy Piven as a coworker who has the hots for Hyde, Devo’s “Girl U Want” plays during the closing credits, and Tim Daly’s body is banging, whether he’s wearing a dress or tightly whities…or nothing.