Frankenstein Undone #1
Frankenstein's creator lies dead in the icy grip of the Arctic, and the monster searches for a new purpose. Just as he thinks he's found one with a group of unlikely companions, disaster strikes--and the monster is catapulted out of Mary Shelley's novel and into the world of Hellboy.
Bridging Mary Shelley's original Frankenstein novella and Mike Mignola's Frankenstein Underground, this series brings together Mignola, Scott Allie, Ben Stenbeck, Brennan Wagner, and Clem Robins for an all-new horror adventure in the far north.
Bringing together the horror classic Frankenstein from legendary author Mary Shelley and the more recent Frankenstein Underground series, this creative team has quite a significant undertaking before them in the first issue of Frankenstein Unbound…
And they pull it off magnificently!
When invoking an iconic story like Frankenstein, there are certain expectations that readers will instantly bring into the reading experience, and this first issue plays on that awareness with expert skill. We begin with a word for word retelling of the final moments of Mary Shelley’s novella as the story finds its footing in transitioning to a new tale featuring the perceived monster. While there are some issues with a lack of credits for Mary Shelley in specific, the story manages to combine the elements of the classic story with the character we’ve come to know as fans in Frankenstein Underground quite well.
The real star of the first issue is undoubtedly Ben Stenback, who weaves a beautiful tale of both tragedy and hope accentuated by remarkable colors from Brennan Wagner. The visuals carry the full weight of the narrative, with many pages featuring little to no dialogue even. Clem Robins still finds room to shine with solid letters when the story needs it though. Together, the artwork helps to deliver an issue that is simply unforgettable. From the moments of belonging with an unfamiliar family of Polar Bears to the realization of a potential community, the artwork just shines with an uncanny sense of confident originality.
While the connections to Frankenstein Underground are more sparse, the characterization is spot on. This is still very much the character we explored the lost underground cities of old with, but following the events of Mary Shelley’s novella, we find the character taking the name of Frankenstein on an entirely new path. A path that becomes much more clear within the final pages of the issue, kicking off an exciting new chapter in the always growing tale of Frankenstein’s Monster.
Ultimately, for fans of the World of Hellboy or Mignola’s unique approach to storytelling in general, Frankenstein Unbound #1 is a remarkably strong issue with a lot to offer. Now that we have found Frankenstein in the far north among strange new people, the story is set up for a thrilling new journey for this tragic character with so much potential for depth and humanistic insight.
If the powerful themes explored in the first issue like abandonment and a spirit for something more are any indication, it seems as though we are in for a real treat with this new series from Dark Horse Comics!
As a strong, but not perfect, bridge between Mary Shelley's classic Frankenstein novella and Mignola's Frankenstein Underground, the first issue of Frankenstein Unbound captures the original spirit while taking the tragic character on a thrilling new journey.
Frankenstein Undone #1: I…the Miserable…the Abandoned
- Writing - 9/109/10
- Storyline - 9/109/10
- Art - 9.5/109.5/10
- Color - 9.5/109.5/10
- Cover Art - 9/109/10
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