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5 March 2015
The Yellow Peril: Dr Fu Manchu & the Rise of Chinaphobia 
by Christopher Frayling.
Thames and Hudson, 360 pp., £24.95, October 2014, 978 0 500 25207 9
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... robe, an Arabian slave-girl and a performing marmoset; and he wages war on the West, pretty much for the hell of it, with the aid of a small army of dacoits, Thugs and zombies. ‘His props,’ ChristopherFrayling writes, ‘include an arsenal of rare poisons in bubbling glassware, rare fungi and bacilli, exotic brightly coloured insects with lots of legs (“my deadly ministers”), and such fiendish ...

At the V&A

Marina Warner: ‘Hollywood Costume’

20 December 2012
... visionary fable about perpetual beauty, ‘The Invention of Morel’ (1940). This strenuous animation, by the design team Casson Mann, tries to overcome the atmosphere of a waxworks museum. ChristopherFrayling, the ‘guest curator’, writes a museological piece in the catalogue, a luxurious and mighty tome, about the tricky history of costume display and changing styles in mannequins and ...

At the Movies

Michael Wood: ‘The Innocents’

9 January 2014
The Innocents 
directed by Jack Clayton.
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... outing. The Innocents, directed by Jack Clayton and wonderfully shot by Freddie Francis, can now be seen in a restored print at the BFI. It is also very well evoked in a new BFI Classics book by ChristopherFrayling. The film is a little heavy in portents, swirling curtains, flickering candles, bumps in the dark, and the ghost of Peter Quint in particular looks as if he has come from a bad night at a ...

Two Sharp Teeth

Philip Ball: Dracula Studies

25 October 2018
Something in the Blood: The Untold Story of Bram Stoker, the Man Who Wrote ‘Dracula’ 
by David J. Skal.
Norton, 672 pp., £15.99, October 2017, 978 1 63149 386 7
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The Cambridge Companion to ‘Dracula’ 
edited by Roger Luckhurst.
Cambridge, 219 pp., £17.99, November 2017, 978 1 316 60708 4
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The Vampire: A New History 
by Nick Groom.
Yale, 287 pp., £16.99, October 2018, 978 0 300 23223 3
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... of homosexual activity. There is, in any event, no evidence Stoker had a sexual relationship with another man. What we know of his frustrations, fantasies and fears we know from his stories. Dracula, ChristopherFrayling writes in his preface to the Penguin edition, ‘was probably transgressing something – but the critics weren’t quite sure exactly what’. The author probably wasn’t sure either. All ...
6 April 1995
Shark-Infested Waters: The Saatchi Collection of British Art in the Nineties 
by Sarah Kent.
Zwemmer, 270 pp., £19.95, November 1994, 0 302 00648 6
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The Reviews that Caused the Rumpus, and Other Pieces 
by Brian Sewell.
Bloomsbury, 365 pp., £12.99, November 1994, 0 7475 1872 6
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... dire mix of sexual and class hypocrisy, intellectual posturing and artistic prejudice. Among other ‘members of the art world’, the letter was signed by Marina Warner, Michael Craig-Martin, ChristopherFrayling and George Melly, also several artists and dealers, and as with all round-robins it wasn’t perhaps the letter any one of them would have written individually. Still, as a tactic, it showed ...

A New Kind of Being

Jenny Turner: Angela Carter

3 November 2016
The Invention of Angela Carter: A Biography 
by Edmund Gordon.
Chatto, 544 pp., £25, October 2016, 978 0 7011 8755 2
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... cover, complete with whip’. It’s worth looking on the internet to see the way Carter was marketed before she, and publishing in general, were ‘comprehensively Virago-ed’, to borrow her friend ChristopherFrayling’s not entirely approving phrase. A 1976 edition of Fireworks has a naked white man clutching at the breast of a naked black woman, the woman chained by the throat to the man’s spiky ...

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