Dark Horse Comics
In the last issue of Frankenstein Undone, the beast swore to be consumed by fire not as an act of cleansing but to be rid of those dark impulses which defined him. In the second issue released this week, we look at the creature’s life turned around at an isolated Eskimo-like village. He’s at peace, and there’s people here who won’t judge him by his looks and now demure nature.
The human he rescued is a shapeshifter. Though they share a mutual bond, the question of whether his name, Arobas, can be etymologically traced to Ouroboros (where life can be seen as cyclic) was being considered in the back of my head. When these two are seeking redemption from their past, the cues are certainly there.
In act two, the writing team of Mike Mignola and Scott Allie delve into new literary allusions to what makes up the beast. Not all of the themes explored in this series are from Mary Shelley’s work, and this issue foreshadows Frankenstein’s monster’s role in Underground–which may well take place after the final issue of this miniseries.
The explorers the creature meets may like him at first, but they are after more than using simple muscle to get at the golden fleece. Hyperborea is hiding somewhere in the Great White North. This world is legendary! Just what these people want is not just treasure. The team is in search for forbidden knowledge. When one of them mentions Eden, I thought of the Tree of Knowledge. Frankenstein’s monster has yet to fully learn what good and evil is, and when considering the traditional Modern Prometheus context to the biblical tale of giving man too much power, there’s plenty of nuances to like in this second issue.
However, I suspect these people may well be the from The Heliopic Brotherhood of Ra. The timeline is more or less right to introduce the founding members of this sect.
With only three issues remaining (as release schedules resume after the world stood still for nearly two months) I’m eager to see how this series will finish. As for whether or not Frankenstein’s creation attains the humanity he so deserves–or will he become a different kind of savior Frankenstein Underground charted–all I can hope for is a definitive trade paperback featuring both tales. Newcomers to the Mignola-verse will appreciate it.