Off With His Head!

I’ve never been a fan of Madame Tussaud’s, or wax museums in general.

When I was eight, my father thought it would be fun to to screen House of Wax on our brand-new VCR (obviously, the original with creepy Vincent Price; as if the Paris Hilton version could ever hold a candle!) right before a family vacation to the wax museum at Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco. The Shaun Cassidy exhibit was cool, but I got so hysterical in the chamber of horrors that we were asked to leave – which we did, but not before I grabbed a fistful of hair of the partially decapitated figure under the guillotine, just to make sure it was fake. I still can’t eat clam chowder without seeing blood.

Do you think this guy‘s dad had the same slightly sadistic streak?

Less than three minutes after the doors of Berlin’s new Madame Tussauds Waxworks opened to the public on Saturday, the figure of Hitler had been decapitated by a former policeman. The assailant, a 41-year-old self-professed leftwing activist identified only as Frank L, who was second in line for the museum, was being hailed as a national hero after witnesses described how he ran past guards and leapt on to the figure, ripping off its head while repeatedly shouting: “No more war!”

Many Germans had already expressed disgust that Madame Tussauds would have the poor taste to put up a display in the first place and lauded Frank. L for his “artistic activism”:

“Seventy-five years after he seized power, and 63 years after the end of the Third Reich, finally someone has succeeded in assassinating Adolf Hitler,” wrote the essayist Henryk M. Broder in Der Spiegel. “It’s good news – the bad news is it happened rather too late.”

In spite of the accusations, the museum is already reattaching the wax Adolph’s head to its body and plans to reopen the display as soon as possible. Frank L. faces charges of vandalism and assault.

Should you ever decide to take the kids to Berlin, maybe you’ll fire up some Vincent Price and set ’em loose at Tussauds…?

6 thoughts on “Off With His Head!

  1. Frank L is a mentch, he deserves honors not prosection.

    I went to the Tussaud’s in London — overpriced tourist kitsch & now off my places to see list.

  2. I took human gross anatomy in grad school. Prosected anatomy specimens are whole pieces
    (sections) of a cadaver (eg., a head)that are pre-dissected (ergo ‘prosected’)for a student’s perusal. Ours were wrapped in formalin- or phenol-soaked towels and stuffed into zip lock plastic bags, complete with globules of fat floating around in the preservative. Lovely.

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