Improving with age – Chap. 4, Act 1, Strip 8

And here we have the next re-addition to our main cast: Professor James E. Doctor returns in a new and improved form. After the third chapter started with the shocking revelation that his apparently hunched back was only a covertly worn parachute, this chapter reveals that his rather prominent brow ridge likewise wasn’t what it seemed to be. Yeah, those crazy Italian designers. The things they’ll come up with.

I think I’ll name Professor Doctor’s tendency to become less and less malformed with age the “Ygor-effect”. The character of Ygor was played by Bela Lugosi in “Son of Frankenstein” and “The Ghost of Frankenstein”, but due to budgetary constraints he was in far better shape in the second movie than in the first – less hunched, neater beard, better teeth and a much better command of the English language. Those bullets he was riddled with at the end of the first movie must have been good for his health. Much in the same way I would put the Professor’s evolution down to cuts Nolan made in the budget for special make-up – using the actor’s face without rubber appliances just saves a lot of money in the long run.

I predict that at the beginning of the next chapter, it will be revealed that the Professor’s age of 111 years is the result of an overflow error, and he’s really only 11 years old.

More on Monday.

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