As part of our #MonsterMonth celebration at WhenItWasCool.com I want to take a look at the Frankenstein Monster and his early appearances in the pages of Marvel Comics. Much like Dracula, the Frankenstein Monster falls into the public domain and can be used as a character by any comic book company. We have previously talked about his first appearance in the DC Comics Universe in Detective Comics issue 135. Today, let’s see when he shows up in the Marvel Universe and, oddly enough, it is not in the pages of a classic horror comic like Tomb of Dracula but, instead, in the pages of Silver Surfer!
Dr. Frankenstein makes his first appearance in the Marvel Universe in the pages of Silver Surfer (Vol. 1) issue 7. The Frankenstein Monster only appears in a few panels in a flashback telling the story of Dr. Frankenstein as a decedent of his is now trying to create a new monster and is attempting to tap into the Silver Surfer’s cosmic power in order to do so.
Silver Surfer issue 7 was published in 1969 and the Frankenstein Monster himself is only shown in the flashback but a few years later the monster himself would be brought into the Marvel Universe and cross over with various superheros and villains many times.
The Frankenstein Monster’s first appearance in Marvel Comics would only be in a few panels and it would change somewhat as it is retold a few years later when Frankenstein gets his own comic book title.
The next time we see Dr. Frankenstein and his creation is in his own comic book series The Monster of Frankenstein where the first few issues draw directly from Mary Shelly’s book with elements from the old Universe Pictures Frankenstein movie, as well as, Bride of Frankenstein. The book soon follows the Frankenstein Monster on new adventures.
The new The Monster of Frankenstein comic book came out two years after the character first appeared in the pages of Silver Surfer issue 7. The two stories have little in common aside from the character of the Monster.
Throughout the years, the Frankenstein Monster has appeared only sporadically in the pages of Marvel Comics and has had his origin altered multiple times. Even his name, at one point, was changed to Adam. The Frankenstein Monster has been used more consistently in DC Comics, even having a series and appearances in the last few years. Marvel Comics, however, has used Dracula, the Wolf Man (Werewolf by Night), and even the Living Mummy more frequently than the Monster of Frankenstein but, never the less, the character does exist inside the framework of the larger Marvel Universe.
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