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Dr Jekyll And Ms Hyde Wastes The Potential Of Its Gender Flipped Premise

dr jekyll and ms hyde poster

Dr. Jekyll And Ms. Hyde wasted what could have been an intriguing premise on a terrible comedy. Author Robert Louis Stevenson penned The Strange Case Of Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde which was published in 1886. The novella tells of Dr. Henry Jekyll, who in his attempt to combat the dark side of his personality creates a serum designed to suppress it. Naturally, this potion only serves to highen the evil within, and he transforms from time to time into his cruel alter ego Mr. Edward Hyde.

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde quickly became shorthand when it came to describing people with split personalities, and the character became an iconic monster. The book has been adapted numerous times, with notable adaptations including 1941's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and the 2007 BBC miniseries Jekyll starring James Nesbitt (The Hobbit). The Hulk is also heavily inspired by the original book. Some of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde's most recent appearances including a cameo in Hugh Jackman's Van Helsing and he was played by Russell Crowe in 2017's The Mummy. Crowe's character meant to serve as something of a Nick Fury to the monsters of the Dark Universe, but in light of the movie's box-office disappointment, that cinematic universe is unlikely to come to fruition.

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Related: Why Did The Mummy Fail At The Box Office?

The various adaptations of Dr. Jekyll And Mr. Hyde have run the gamut from dark psychological dramas to wacky comedies, such as The Nutty Professor and its 1996 remake. One movie that was on the verge of doing something interesting with the material was 1995's Dr. Jekyll And Ms. Hyde. This take involves Dr. Richard Jacks (Tim Daly) finding the formula of his ancestor Jekyll and adding more estrogen to temper the side effects. Instead, this causes him to transform into the beautiful, evil Helen Hyde (Sean Young, Blade Runner) who soon plots to take over his body completely.

dr jekyll and ms hyde tim daly

Dr. Jekyll And Ms. Hyde was designed from the beginning to be a wacky comedy, to the point Jim Carrey (Dumb And Dumber) was once set play Jekyll before being replaced with Tim Daly. While the movie could have used its premise to explore gender politics, it's instead a dumb, unfunny comedy that used its gender-flipped concept for wacky hijinks. It might have helped if it had any good gags but outside of a couple of mild chuckles, the jokes are both dumb and somewhat misogynistic.

Tim Daly later admitted Dr. Jekyll And Ms. Hyde was just dumb, though he's happy with the ranch his paycheque allowed him to buy. Somewhere within Dr. Jekyll And Ms. Hyde there's an interesting idea trying to escape - sadly, the final movie completely wasted it.

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