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ICYMI: Superman Just Got In A Fistfight With Frankenstein And All Is Right With The World

Action Comics #46

If you'd asked me back when it was coming out to put a bet on which character from Seven Soldiers would actually go on to become the most prominent of the DC Universe, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have put any money on Frankenstein. Just for the record, I would've backed the Manhattan Guardian all the way to the bank, and yet, here we are, in a DC Universe where Frankenstein is showing up everywhere.

It was just last week that he showed up leading the Creature Commandos in a cross-time caper in Justice League United, and this week, he's doing what all great heroes in the DC Universe must do in order to get to that next level of fame: Getting in a fistfight with Superman. And it's awesome.

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It’s Alive! Best Frankenstein Fan Art Ever


Halloween is almost here. In fact, it basically couldn’t be any closer because it’s All Hallow’s Eve. Or Devil’s Night if you’re a Crow fan. As you’re planning your spooky activities, mapping out your candy begging routes, and putting the finishing touches on your costumes, we’ve got one last treat Halloween treat for you! This ghoulish gallery devoted to everyone’s favorite shambling, abomination to medicine and religion, Frankenstein!

I don’t want to get too book report-y here, because you have access to Wikipedia for that, but Frankenstein’s grip on the public’s imagination, and more importantly how quickly and how long it’s held that grip, is something that cannot be undervalued or disregarded. Whatever reason has brought you here to look at these images, I’m going to assume at least part of it has to do with what place Frankenstein (or “Frankenstein’s Monster” if you’re one of those people) holds in your heart or your nightmares.

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Ask Chris #264: Frankenstein Lives!

Ask Chris #264, background art by Doug Mahnke

Q: What Halloween-y monster fits into the second-most different narrative roles, behind Dracula? -- @crookedknight

A: First things first, you are right to put Dracula at the top of the list. I've been through this before, but for anyone just joining us who hasn't heard me go through it for five or six hours, Dracula is the best. He's been around long enough and often enough that everyone pretty much knows what his deal is just from hearing the name, and you can drop him into any story in virtually any role. He can be a villain, an uneasy ally, a shadowy figure manipulating things from behind the scenes, and even, occasionally, a globetrotting protagonist battling things even worse than he is. He can be bloodthirsty fiend, sophisticated devil, reluctant hero, or all of the above.

But given all that, it there's one choice for the spooky silver medal that seems so obvious that I was surprised I got this question. It has to be Frankenstein. Right?

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Fantastic Five: Best Frankensteins in Comics

franken fives

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from our years on the Internet, it’s that there’s no aspect of comics that can’t be broken down and quantified in a single definitive list, preferably in amounts of five or ten. And since there’s no more definitive authority than ComicsAlliance, we’re taking it upon ourselves to compile Top Five lists of everything you could ever want to know about comics.

Halloween is just over a week away, so this week we're counting down different comic renditions of the original literary monster, Frankenstein! Since the publication of Mary Shelley's novel in 1818, the story of the Modern Prometheus and his monster has been adapted into basically every other medium there is. While people probably known Frankenstein's monster best from Boris Karloff's portrayal in the Universal series of movies, the lurching metaphor for the consequences of man's hubris has been no slouch in comics either. Join us as we count down comics' five best portrayals and adaptations of Frankenstein.

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Bizarro Back Issues: Bizarro Meets Frankenstein! (1961)

Superman #143, DC Comics

First things first: Bizarro is terrifying. Yes, with the exception of maybe two stories, he's been played for laughs for around 57 years, but if you stop to think about it for a minute, the very idea is one of the most sinister things superhero comics have ever come up with; someone who has all of Superman's powers, all of his unstoppable indestructibility, but a concept of morality that exists in complete opposition to Superman's, and that will not, that can not ever change? It's harrowing.

But as scary as he might be, I don't really consider Bizarro to be a Halloween monster. "Supervillain" isn't quite right either, but there's nothing about Bizarro that I'd think would put him in competition with, say, Dracula or the Wolfman. But then again, I'm not Otto Binder, who apparently thought that Superman's imperfect duplicate battling it out with Frankenstein for the title of the greatest of all monsters was something that should definitely happen. You know, except for the part where it's not actually Frankenstein.

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Bizarro Back Issues: Dick Briefer’s ‘Frankenstein’ Wants To Destroy The World (1941)

Frankenstein by Dick Briefer

The thing about Dick Briefer's Golden Age Frankenstein comics is that if you start reading them from the beginning, there's just enough in there from the novel to make you think that he's doing a straight up adaptation of Mary Shelley. There's familiar stuff about Victor deciding to conquer death and stitching up a bunch of corpses, charging them up with lightning, and then the Monster's escape out in to a world that will never understand it, right down to the villagers with the pitchforks. It's three pages that make you think you know exactly what's going on.

And then, on page four, the Monster breaks into a zoo, punches out a lion, and rides off on an elephant, and that's when you realize that Frankenstein is on a whole other level of being completely bonkers.

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Fantastic Five: Top Five Giant Monsters

monster five

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from our years on the Internet, it’s that there’s no aspect of comics that can’t be broken down and quantified in a single definitive list, preferably in amounts of five or ten. And since there’s no more definitive authority than ComicsAlliance, we’re taking it upon ourselves to compile Top Five lists of everything you could ever want to know about comics.

This week we’re taking a look at some of our favorite giant monsters and kaiju in comics. Though kaiju are generally more closely associated with the silver screen and its many examples of actors in oversized suits fighting among undersized buildings, comics have an abundance of city stompers to celebrate as well. Hopefully this list will help you settle any and all future kaiju-related arguments.

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Steve Niles And Nat Jones Give Vampires The Nuclear Option In ‘Broken Moon’ [Preview]


Steve Niles has made something of a career in comics out of figuring out interesting new ways to let vampires just hang out all the time without being boxed in by those pesky fatal sunburns that come from daylight. His breakout hit was, after all, 30 Days of Night alongside Ben Templesmith, a book that was built entirely around that premise and resulted in a pretty fun read. But once you've gone there, you're left with a question of where to go that's even bigger. For Niles and Nat Jones, the answer is clear: You nuke the moon.

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Dark Horse Announces Mike Mignola & Ben Stenbeck’s ‘Frankenstein Underground’


In case you haven't noticed from the fact that all your Twitter friends have changed their display names to delightfully sub-Cryptkeeper puns, it is finally October! And that, my fiends, means that it's finally time for some spoooooky announcements about upcoming projects, and Dark Horse is getting the jump on everyone else by touting a brand-new comic that won't be out until 2015.

There's a reason they're announcing it now, though: It's a brand new comic about Frankenstein's Monster written by Mike Mignola, and that's kind of a big deal. Along with artist Ben Stenbeck, who worked with Mignola previously on Baltimore, the series will be called Frankenstein Underground, and will be set in the same universe as Hellboy and BPRD.

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Bizarro Back Issues: Spider-Mans, Man-Wolves And Frankensteins, Oh My! (1975)


One of the interesting things about Marvel Comics is how seamlessly they integrated horror characters into their mainstream universe. A lot of that, of course, is just convenience. Marvel is, after all, a superhero publisher, so even when they do a comic about Dracula or, say, an actual demon from Hell who runs around with his head on fire punishing sinners with his supernatural abilities, they still just treat them like superheroes that are just part of this bigger, weirder world.

As a result, while they might all get lumped in together, they never really stay cooped up in some spooky corner, and if you're the type to dive into the quarter bin to look for a few cheap scares, that makes it pretty easy to find a spoooooky Halloween back issue. Sometimes Dracula shows up in X-Men and hits on Storm for two issues. Sometimes Blade joins a team of British heroes and helps fight aliens. And sometimes... sometimes Spider-Man gets kidnapped and strapped to a table with Frankenstein so that some weirdo you've never heard of can make "MONSTER SUPREME."

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