So after finishing Frankenstein I thought that it would be appropriate to cover one of my favorite Lovecraftian stories with a similar topic – Reanimator.
Although it is presented as one story, Reanimator is split up into six chapters. From the Dark, The Plague-Daemon, Six Shots by Midnight, The Scream of the Dead, The Horror From the Shadows, The Tomb-Legions. The story is told by an unnamed acquaintance of Herbert West. He recalls the time that he met him, the doctor who has recently disappeared. They both met in the famous Miskatonic university where the narrator becomes very fascinated by him and his theories about the human body. West talks about how the human body is like a machine and can be restarted. So he decides to start experimenting on humans. The narrator decides to help him and they set up a laboratory in an abandoned warehouse. After a series of unsuccessful attempts at reviving someone they come across a body of a construction worker which they inject with the serum. First it appears that nothing happened but after a while they hear an inhuman sound and run for their lives accidentally burning the warehouse. From there a lot of time passes as the narrator and West proceed with their experiments. They keep getting better and better at it even managing to revive certain parts of the body in order to prove that the human is like a machine.
I don’t want to spoil the end as it was my favorite part of the book so I’ll just move on. Much like Viktor Frankenstein, Herbert West is a man obsessed with knowledge and his desire to push the limits of science and breach the boundaries between life and death. The story differs from the movie quite a bit which is good. I was not that fond of the movie. It was very enjoyable but nothing compared to the film. I loved following West’s slow descent into madness. To this day this is one of my favorite Lovecraft stories and oddly enough it does not have any of his Eldrich abominations. It’s creative and different but still very enjoyable. I did have some issues with the pacing and some parts were repetitive but that is understandable since it was published as a series in a magazine. There were also a few parts that sounded a bit racist that bugged me too.
Overall it’s a great short story which I highly recommend.
Final verdict: 9/10