When we retread a concept, say with something like Frankenstein, you better have a unique or fresh take because we’ve got to have a reason to peruse your “original” story. Enter Image Comics’ Madame Frankenstein, already at a disadvantage for being unoriginal… or is it? Is it good?
Madame Frankenstein #1 (Image Comics)
It’s 1932, right outside Boston, and a beautiful girl has been in an accident; now she’s a mangled corpse, but when she was alive she just so happened to meet Vincent Krall, scientist and otherwise gentleman. Just her luck too, because he wants to resurrect the girl and Frankenstein her corpse. We quickly find out the doctor is a good man making a living in the country; his female assistant is there by his side and, oh right, he can see fairies. Say wha?!
The premise is a simple one, written by Jamie S. Rich, but does have some promise where it deviates from the classic story. That said, it doesn’t deviate much in this issue, so it remains to be seen how original of a story we have here. The fact of the matter is, you’ll probably be bored with the happenings here since it’s thus far a by the numbers Frankenstein storytelling. The new elements that are there are so minimal it’s as if they don’t exist yet; they do offer enough of a difference to warrant a return to the series with issue #2, but I’m hesitant since it’s not jumping off the page quite yet. There also seems to be a prominent supply of naked breasts to observe in this issue; which of course begs the question, did you make a female version of a story simply to show off T and A? Sure she’s naked and a corpse, but the amount of boob shots screams, “Please horny teen buy this book!”
The illustrations by Megan Levens are quite good. Very simple and clean lines which give the book a dainty and classic feel. It’s all in black and white which helps do her lines justice. Color would have been a distraction and wouldn’t have added much anyway. Her work helps add some class to the book and it’s certainly a different flavor for anyone looking for something a little different.
Is It Good?
It’s not that great of a book because we don’t yet know why it deserves to exist alongside the original Frankenstein. There’s a few new additions to the concept, but they aren’t shown enough to warrant this book. Plus the nudity seems classless rather than a necessary element.