Frankenstein the Graphic Novel - Original Text: British Edition
Graphic Novel. Conceived as part of a literary game among friends in 1816, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is today regarded as a classic piece of 19th century literature. The story begins with the journey of an adventurer, Robert Walton, who saves the life of a man at the North Pole. That man, Victor Frankenstein, tells Walton about his experiments with the creation of life and how he ended up at the North Pole. Through this simple plot device, Shelley was able to deal with serious real-world issues like acceptance, tolerance, and understanding, as well as the universal human need for companionsh- ip and love. The novel, of course, inspired a host of films, from the 1931 classic starring Boris Karloff to Andy Warhol's Frankenst- ein, and more recently, a series of novels by Dean Koontz. This version, though slightly abridged, retains much of the original dialogue and remains true to Shelley's brilliant vision.
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I absolutely hated this selection. Using the original text with illustrations that are updated causes confusion and discord for the reader who may not understand the mixture if they’re not familiar with the original text. I’m not pleased with the mixture and think that it may detour someone from seeking out the original work. If someone has no interest in reading anything beyond comics, this may be a good introduction to the story, but it will do little more than allow for an understanding of cultural references.
The text is original, from Mary Shelley's novel, while the cartoons present an updated version of this story. Frankenstein's "monster" here is at first not so much of a monster. He looks rather like Woody Strode wearing a fall (a wig, kind of a ponytail, that falls down his back). Frankenstein, and his friend Henry, look like hippies.
The women, Elizabeth, Victor Frankenstein's eventual wife, and Justine, hung after a murder conviction (guess who the real perpetrator was), are not very attractive. Since the monster is more attractive in the cartoon than he was in the movie, I would have thought the women would be, too, but no, that's not the case.
Anyway, it's a pretty absorbing story, even if you have not read the original book by Mary Shelley. The graphics make it extremely interesting, and they are well done.
Note: the monster is a very intelligent fellow, so Victor must have given him the brain from an intelligent person. The monster reads Paradise Lost, and some other books they assign in college English; and learns to speak like an English baron. In a few weeks. In fact, he is such a fast learner, you would really have to call him a genius.
His only problem is that he cannot control his emotions, and he knows that he is more powerful than humans, so he ends up taking revenge. In other words, he is not emotionally intelligent, though in words and symbols he's a genius. Well, that's how it goes with geniuses, I suppose, even if they are made up of different dead folk's body parts.