Halloween Week 2011: Frankenstein’s Monster through the eyes of others
Permalink -- Posted in Comics on October 27, 2011 at 2:26 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus is a classic of literature that has been adapted to movies several times, some more faithfully than others. But none have come close to portraying him as Shelley once wrote:

How can I describe my emotions at this catastrophe, or how delineate the wretch whom with such infinite pains and care I had endeavoured to form? His limbs were in proportion, and I had selected his features as beautiful. Beautiful! Great god, His yellow skin scarcely covered the work of muscle and arteries beneath; his hair was of a lustrous black, and flowing; his teeth of a pearly whiteness; but these luxuriances only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that seemed almost of the same colour as the dun white sockets in which they were set, his shrivelled complexion, and straight black lips.

Instead, what most of us think of when we hear the name (or word) Frankenstein is this:

Seriously you guys.

For cris'sakes, THEY MADE HIM GREEN FOR SOME REASON. (Boris Karloff photo taken from TV Tropes' Frankenstein 1931 article.)

Thankfully, not everyone sees him the same way. So here's some examples of the many depictions of Frankenstein's creation found in comic books and other media!

OH CRAP THAT'S THE LAST TIME I GO TO THAT BAR
To begin, this isn't from a comic book, instead it's an illustration included in Colburn and Bentley's 1831 printing of Frankenstein. (Viewable online at Tate Britain's Gothic Nightmares exhibition.)The artwork was created by Theodore Von Holst. While he isn't grotesque, probably due to the limitations of the medium, you can still see Victor Frankenstein's disgust at what he's done... and his creation's astonishment at being alive.

What, this is good artwork, I don't have anything funny to say about it.
This is by Bernie Wrightson. I first found out about him via some editions of Stephen King's novels - he provided illustrations for certain editions of his books. He also worked on Swamp Thing, House of Mystery, Eerie, Creepy... you get the picture, eh? He portrays the creature as being more cadaveric than human. Yet you can still see the sadness that his own existence causes him to feel. (Taken from Bernie Wrightson's Frankenstein, published in 1983 by Marvel Comics.)

That's not Steam.
And then there's DC's version, as written by Grant Morrison. He's Shelley's version, but he's now an immortal monster hunter who works for SHADE, DC's parody version of SHIELD. He burned down an entire school and everyone in it to stop some sort of invasion. He doesn't fuck around. (Image courtesy of DC Wikia.) And finally...

Fabio's obsession with plastic surgery has gone too far.
... uh. You know, I never expected Dean Koontz to turn the Monster into friggin' Fabio. This is from Dean Koontz's Frankenstein: Prodigal Son, adapted by Chuck Dixon, with artwork by Brett Booth. You may know him as that guy who adapted the Anita Blake novels to comic book form. He's currently working on DC's relaunched Teen Titans.

I may not have a post ready for tomorrow, since I have other commitments - but keep an eye out on my Twitter, or feel free to subscribe to my site's RSS feed to receive further updates!