Most of the victims in the novel were Frankenstein’s family, William, Henry, Justine and Elizabeth. These people all suffered due to the creature’s anger from Frankenstein’s original neglect, which is what begun the hatred in the creature. It is not fair to view the creature as a human, as he was artificially created he has no human morals and has never been taught the difference between right and wrong, in the same sense that a court would never convict a baby.
Although the creature did manage to master human language skills, it only pushed him further away from society as it allowed him to express his alien nature. We can see this in the novel when the creature put his hand into a fire, because the colours and heat of the fire attracted him ” I thrust my hand into the live embers but quickly drew it out again with a cry of pain”. The creature was a victim in the way that he was uneducated of the world before he “stepped into it”.
Elizabeth can easily be portrayed as a hero in the novel as she represented a “saintly soul” and a “living spirit of love”. This lets her down however, when she attempts to save Justine in a religiously Christian based way, which was not successful. Although viewed as a hero she doesn’t contain any power over other characters, just a good heart. There is controversy over whether Frankenstein could be viewed as a hero or not, as a cowardly attribute is certainly not a trait of a true hero. When the monster asked him to create a companion for him, he said no as this would enables the creatures to breed and possibly take over global human power.
On the other hand he could have spared his family a lot of trouble if he had just created another being who could have possibly shown the love and understanding the creature needed. Frankenstein later realises this when he says “For the first time, I felt what the duties of a creator towards his creature were, and that I ought to render him happy before I complained of his wickedness”. Elizabeth, Frankenstein’s wife, was also a hero as she managed to bring up everyone’s spirits at sad times, and she continually believed in Justine’s innocence. This particular genre creates a need for both heroes and villains, as it is usually the case of good trying to overpower evil, or vice-versa.
To conclude, I believe that there are heroes and villains, as well as victims in this novel. Most of the characters seem to change from villains, heroes and victims throughout the novel, especially the creature and Frankenstein. In my belief the creature was made to be the victim from the opening of the novel as he was neglected, uneducated and ostracised. I believe Frankenstein could have changed everything if he had befriended the creature in the first place.
On the other hand Frankenstein was also an isolated individual, although his isolation from society was brought on himself. The novel shows the shallowness of people in society by showing what the monster had to endure because of his appearance, as well as the moral irresponsibility of Frankenstein as a scientist. Frankenstein was always the villain deep down as he attempted to play God, which I don’t think should be attempted by any human being.
He was obsessed with the fact that he could create life, but never once to considered if it was the right thing to do. I think Shelley is basing the whole novel on, not what Frankenstein actually did, but what he fails to do. The way the creature is portrayed in 3rd person narrative allows us to see the creature as a hero, villain and a victim. I believe that the creature viewed Frankenstein as a father figure and was mentally tortured when his own creator neglected him. He had nothing to live for, except revenge.