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Old and Young Frankenstein

Old and Young Frankenstein

Something that interested me greatly about Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein was the treatment that the

creature received from Frankenstein and the other people around him. I often wonder how things

would have turned out had he been treated with a little bit of humanism and compassion, especially

by his creator. What if Frankenstein had taken the responsibility as the creature’s parent and

created him with a little humanism and kindness? Would the creature have vowed such revenge

and killed everyone Victor cared about? I’m going to use the film Young Frankenstein from 1974

to show what happened when the creature, created this time by Victor’s grandson, Frederick,

received better treatment. Although the film is meant as a parody of all the films based on the

novel, underlying this humor are more serious points, one of which is the concern with the way the

creature is considered.

The first step is to make a comparison between the film and the novel, and to look at the 1931 film

version, since the humor in Young Frankenstein seems to be greatly parodying that film. The

Frankenstein in this film version is Frederick, the grandson of Victor, who is a lecturer on

neurosurgeons in New York. He receives news of his grandfather’s will, and he goes off to

Transylvania to claim his ancestral estate, there finding the plans of his grandfather’s for the

construction of a creature. The plot is very loosely based on Shelley’s Frankenstein as a model,

but it’s continued into the twentieth century with a different generation. Of course, when looking at

the novel, it seems quite impossible that Victor could possibly have had a …

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…ral times, at the risk of his own life, as most parent would do for their

children. Victor from Shelley’s novel never even considered the creature a fellow being and

showed no responsibility whatsoever to the creature. This creature felt unloved by his father, and

plotted revenge on Victor, taking his family away, a family the creature could never experience.

This comparison shows how if Victor had once considered the feelings of the creature, everything

could have turned out so much differently.

Works Cited

Alpert, Hollis. “Comedy: The New King.” Saturday Review World 2 Nov. 1974: 52- 3.

“Blazing Brooks.” Show Business and TV. Time 13 Jan. 1975: 56.

Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. New York: Bedford Books of St. Martin’s Press, 1992.

Young Frankenstein. Dir. Mel Brooks. 20th Century Fox Film Corporation, 1974

Nature and Nurture in Frankenstein and Rappaccini’s Daughter

Nature and Nurture in Frankenstein and Rappaccini’s Daughter

One of the most popular disputes in the history of philosophy regards whether nurture of a human being plays a more important role in the formation of its character than the genetic heritage that it bears. As a natural result, the dispute echoes in many literary works, not always directly, but sometimes taking the form of a pretext or a motif in a larger context. Such examples are “Frankenstein” by Marry Shelley and “Rappaccini’s Daughter”, by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Their authors relate the evolution of at least two characters, the monster and Beatrice, throughout both writings, with the way those characters were nurtured. Both authors use innocence as a common starting point for the evolution of these characters.

The monster is the creation of Victor Frankenstein, a highly educated scientist. It is the result of a long time search for the miracle of life; the result of this search is not a human being, but merely a horrid-looking humanoid imitation of a man. The monster is not responsible for his hideous physical appearance; yet, he will have to face the consequences of his creator’s lack of design capabilities. The reader is presented with the steps of the monster’s modeling and creation. Victor Frankenstein devotes his entire attention and energy into this process, until the moment when the monster is brought to life. At this point, Victor recognizes the horrid looks of the newborn life form and in a moment of panic, abandons his creation. This is a turning point for both characters; the shock is too much for both to handle. The monster escapes and becomes a runaway child, seemingly helpless to communicate with other human beings due to the…

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…Reader.” ESQ: A Journal of the American Renaissance 35 (1989): 43-69.

Levine, George. The Endurance of Frankenstein. Los Angeles: Moers, 1974.

Male, Roy R. Hawthorne’s Tragic Vision. Austin: Texas University Press, 1957.

Marder, Daniel. Exiles at Home: A Story of Literature in Nineteenth Century America. Lanham: University Press of America, Inc., 1984.

Patterson, Arthur Paul. A Frankenstein Study.

Smith, Christopher. Frankenstein as Prometheus. ers/FrankCS.html

Spark, Muriel. Mary Shelly. New York: Dutton, 1987.

Spark and Stanford. My Best Mary. New York: Roy,1944.

Williams, Bill. On Shelley’s Use of Nature Imagery.

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