Joe Darowski
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‘The X-Men meet Frankenstein! “Nuff Said”’
Adapting Mary Shelley’s monster in superhero comic books
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This chapter offers a brief history of Frankenstein adaptations in the comic book industry before examining three 1968 issues of The X-Men comic book series written by Roy Thomas and drawn by Don Heck. The first issue features the X-Men battling Frankenstein’s monster, but despite explicit references to Mary Shelley’s book and the presence of the monster, it bears little thematic or narrative connection to the original text. However, the subsequent two issues features an antagonist called Grotesk, the Sub-Human, and this story contains many more affinities with Shelley’s text. This chapter suggests that the influence of Frankenstein is surprisingly pervasive in the Marvel Universe.

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