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The Shadow of Frankenstein

Creators: Stefan Petrucha, January 2007
Chronologically, this takes place after Universal’s Bride of Frankenstein. Henry Frankenstein and his wife take a ship to England to escape the wrath of his hometown. But the monster has hidden aboard and follows him to London. As Henry tries to put his life together he’s implicated in several “Jack the Ripper” style killings, though the original Ripper had done those grisly deeds fifty years before. Yet, this turns out to be the same killer, who has discovered a way to prolong his life span. The serial killer meets up with the Monster--and Henry--and wants the doctor to make an indestructible body for him. The Monster befriends a local prostitute who becomes a victim of the Ripper. He’s captured by the authorities and is held in Seward’s Sanitorium (where Bela Lugosi’s Dracula was destroyed years before). What’s interesting is that Henry wants to understand the thought processes of his creation and manages to find where the defective brain originally came from. In fact, he speaks with the mother of whose brain is housed in the body of the monster. This sheds a great deal of light on why the Frankenstein Monster does what he does, why he becomes enraged so quickly, why he kills. The Shadow of Frankenstein is true to the Universal Frankenstein Monster and reveals some perspectives not shown in the first two movies. The book also successfully bridges the gap--and foreshadows--the events in the subsequent Frankenstein movies (with Igor’s brain being transplanted into the Monster’s body). If you’re a fan of the Universal Monster movies this is a book not to miss. (Kevin Lindenmuth)

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