Frankenstein Underground #1 Review: Frankenstein Vs. The Ancient Gods Of Mexico

frankunderground Take a journey through the underground, full of fallen angels, Aztec gods, and some of the greatest mysteries of the Mignolaverse, in this new five-part miniseries.

Have you ever wondered what became of Victor Frankenstein’s unfortunate creation, after the Arctic Circle? This new miniseries, from the Hellboy/B.P.R.D. team of Mike Mignola, Ben Stenbeck, and Dave Stewart will answer that question.

What’s it about?

According to the Dark Horse blog, “The miniseries follows the Frankenstein monster, who is alone, abandoned, and wandering underground, where he discovers both other monsters and the dark secrets to the universe.”

Issue #1 introduces the cast – Frankenstein’s Monster; a Mexican witch; The Marquis Addet De Fabre; and Iblifika – 22nd spirit under Belial, and catches up on what the Monster’s been up to, since his adventures in the Great White North.

Why Frankenstein? Isn’t that a bit… overdone?

Horror fans are funny creatures. We root for the underdogs – the outcasts and outsiders.

Frankenstein’s Monster is both an outcast AND an outsider – the ultimate underdog. Since Boris Karloff’s iconic representation has been terrorizing audiences, since 1931, Frankenstein’s Monster has been cast in an increasingly sympathetic light. We must remember that the old blind peasant he helped thought he was a fairy, until his judgmental, sighted family rushed in and ruined everything.

How’s the artwork?

I’m glad you asked, as Ben Stenbeck’s clean lines and Stewart’s bold primary colors, recalling the four color pulps of the Silver Age, are the first thing that made me sit up and take notice, drawing me further into the mysterious story arc.

Frankstein’s Monster is ripped straight from the pages of Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. (first appearing in the graphic novel House Of The Living Dead). I didn’t even need to look at the credits page to know that, so unique and distinctive is the art style.

The Mignolaverse has been refined, over time, to become almost a horror/pop culture religious iconography. The lines are strong, seeming to writhe like pythons or live electrical wires on the page, drawing you into the action, without ever becoming over-busy.

But is it scary?

Horror is defined by its ability to chill the blood and make tarantulas crawl all over your skin. By that definition, Frankenstein Underground is not horror, although I can see the potential to go in that direction.

Instead, I would say Frankenstein Underground is a really badass supernatural action comic, speaking in the language of horror.

How’s it end?

I’ll never tell. You’ll have to read for yourself to find out. I WILL say that the first issue of Frankenstein Underground ends with a napalm run of a cliffhanger, that will make sure you won’t want to miss #2.

So how’d you like it?

Issue #1 is amazing! I’m a total horror junkie, so the more blood and monsters, the better. Dark Horse is a consistent source of new four-color horror, that surprises, delights, raises questions, and chills the blood!

I can’t wait to see where the Monster goes next!

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