Frankenstein’s Monster was written by Mary Shelley, but we already know the story of the novelist that changed the vision of horror, science-fiction and how she opened the door for women coming into the literary world.
She created over a summer, after herself and her friends made a bet of writing an entire story by the beginning of Fall and she was the only one who accomplished it and had it published in 1818 with the help of her father.
Little did Mrs. Shelley know that Frankenstein’s Monster would become timeless, forever part of the horror classics and that to this day he would still be praised upon in the Gothic world.
After all, we all know that there is only one Frankenstein’s Monster and that even after roughly a little over seventy movies based on her work over the world, we are still looking for the perfect piece that will ever be made to represent the monster we have grown to admire either, no one could truly replaced the iconic representation Boris Karloff created for the monster.
Frankenstein’s Monster has been part of the pop culture for many years. I mean, the monster turned 200 years old this year. He has been on posters, illustrations, used on cereal boxes, Halloween’s costumes, part of plays, cartoon movie franchise and series, even in a holiday commercial (one of my favorite commercials of all time).
Who Is The Monster?
Frankenstein’s Monster made an incredible impression.
“… a border territory between the characteristics that typically define protagonists and antagonists” – Joseph Carroll
I believe he is one of the few characters that despite his actions, have the reader still sympathize with him and if like me, wished to help him and have him know what friendship is. To me, the monster was not the hideous eight feet tall creature, but the doctor behind it. His actions were monstrous and his persona monstrous.
Dr. Victor Frankenstein had the motto “Because I can” written all over him. Determined to be successful with his experiment, but unwilling to see it as a child once it would open its eyes. Never gave a second thought to the definition of what life and love and caring is.
While back then, the monster was the “child”, I believe with our vision of the world today, we would see Dr. Frankenstein as the true monster, because we’ve learned that beauty is within and not something that is worn on the outside. The Monster was never the monster, yet, people in the novel saw him as such without giving him a chance.
He was qualified as a monster because of his appearance and lack of social manners, but no one ever stopped and tried to approach him. Everyone was scared and didn’t know how to act, the proof that ignorance is one of the most dangerous weapon on Earth.
Bullying is nothing knew as it is well present in the novel, but I’m not here to psychoanalyze the story of Frankenstein since I believe I did enough of that until now.
Inspiration & Admirers
Let’s talk about the impact the character had. Frankenstein’s Monster inspired many authors from Robert Louis Stevenson who wrote Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde to Stephanie Hemphill with Hideous Love. Two hundred years of inspiration and creation all from one novel that spoke of a monster creating a doomed monster.
Fans of the monsters are everywhere, from Forums on various blogs to groups on DeviantArt and other platforms. There are the movie fans that have their own niche as well, but what I lacked to find was a true Frankenstein community at the exception of those analyzing the novel itself.
When I think about Frankenstein’s Monster, I automatically think of the Beast from Beauty in the Beast. I do not know if I am right to think so, but somehow, the thought of the beast hiding the prince within always has me think of Frankenstein’s Monster hiding something good inside him but just never hide the chance to explore.
Also, wanting love isn’t that what sentient beings want? Thus, wasn’t Frankenstein’s Monster intelligent in every single way? He was aware of his own existence, craved to be accepted by society and loved by his maker and a woman.
Yet, he was denied what every child needs… security, space to grow and love. He tried to get it from others, only to get shunned and threatened. The horror story is not Frankenstein’s Monster, but the reaction society had and his own maker’s doing.
I guess the true horror was how society reacted to the encounter of the unknown and to realize that it’s not because we can that we should. Nature knows best.
And also the true horror is that some of us became the people from the novel while others, feel like the Monster.
I love Frankenstein’s Monster and I hope I brought justice to the creation of one of my icons, Mary Shelley.
The OCD Vampire