As a huge horror fan growing up with the old black and white Universal monster movies, I’ve always wanted to read the original stories that not only inspired these classic films but also ultimately led to the popularity of the horror genre today. Reading Frankenstein was a great opportunity to examine the rise of popular horror as well as the beginnings of science fiction.
Monsters are by far one of my favorite aspects of horror, especially when stories deal with the idea of the tragic monster. In Frankenstein we have this creature that is brought to life by Dr. Victor von Frankenstein while in his deep study of the natural scientists thinks himself capable enough to create life where it has ceased. Although he is successful he is appalled by the monster and flees, but later in the story we find out his creation is articulate and wants to learn. What’s unfortunate is that despite his good intentions, he is rejected by all those he comes into contact with because of his appearance; this leads us to the question of who really is the monster in the story. Victor’s disgust and rejection leads to the monster’s anger and to him ultimately killing Victor’s bride as well as a few of his other friends, but is it his fault for not taking responsibility for his creation and teaching it right from wrong, as morals are not genetic and must be learned.
In the end good and evil are not as black and white as they seem. In the story, light is a symbol for progress and life. But there is a duality to it as light is also linked to fire that may bring warmth and also pain if you venture too close to the flames. One of the monster’s first sensations is the feeling of light being pushed upon his nerves. Light also reveals his appearance to others and causes them to fear him.
There is no plain answer to who is at fault for the deaths of his friends and the misfortune that falls around Victor, but in some ways I think it’s better that there is no clear answer. It’s the duality in themes like these that I really enjoy in horror and sci-fi because it lets the reader decide how to interpret it and brings up excellent topics to question and discuss.
In order to expand upon this theme of monsters and society through my revision, I decided to go back and watch all of No Such Thing with Stephanie Rohrbach. One of the main things we noticed was that throughout the movie there were many characters introduced, but none of them were as lively or as emotional as The Monster was. I’m not sure if it was just the acting or if it was intentional, but it really says something when the monster acts like more of a human than the rest of the humans do. That can also be said with how they treated the Monster. They showed him off treated him like some sort of media fad, which is exactly what The Boss of the media center wanted to do to Beatrice when they found out she had survived the plane crash.
The media wants to sensationalize anything to make a quick profit. They focus on any kind of flaw someone might have and blow it up, criticizing it for the world to see. The Monster basically showed what happens when the media gets their hands of you, he isolates himself, turns to alcohol and becomes incredibly violent. So although the pacing in the movie was odd as well as the acting, it still made some great points about society and how the media create their owns monsters for the worlds entertainment.