Real Name: Boris Drakla
Identity/Class: Normal human technology user (1940s Era)
Occupation: Biologist, Ph.D.
Group Membership: None
Affiliations: Lifer Larch, Monster Men
Enemies: John Greene, Miss America (Madeline Joyce)
Known Relatives: None
Base of Operations: His laboratory, somewhere in the mountains near New York City, USA
First Appearance: Miss America Comics#1/2 (January, 1944)
Powers/Abilities: Professor Drakla practiced a surgical procedure whereby he combined the body parts of various human corpses to create his patchwork "Monster Men"; the process was only effective using fresh cadavers. Drakla lived in an isolated castle-like citadel with a surgical operating room and a large laboratory equipped with electrical devices.
(Miss America Comics#1/2 (fb) - BTS) - The past of Professor Drakla is unknown, although he was known to have once been a reputable scientist. At some point, he established his laboratory headquarters.
(Miss America Comics I#1/2) - Late one night, Drakla was about to perform surgery on a living man strapped to the operating table, but he suddenly had a change of heart and found that he couldn't go through with it--although he needed fresh tissue for his experiments, he got squeamish about actually having to kill. But Drakla's dilemma was alleviated by recently-escaped convict Lifer Larch (who had broken out of a nearby prison hours earlier, and sought refuge in Drakla's castle). Larch obliged and shot and killed the man, then he and Drakla shook hands and formed a pact--Larch would provide Drakla with a list of names of the men who sent him to prison, which would furnish the scientist with more experimental subjects and give Larch a means to get revenge.
(Miss America Comics#1/2 - BTS) - Drakla began sending notes to some of the men individually, requesting that they come to his lab to see him on a matter of vital importance, but asked them not to reveal details to anyone--because of the scientist's sterling reputation, none refused the invitation. Larch took care of killing the men, then Drakla used their bodies to make his Monster Men. The megalomaniac scientist planned to use his creatures to conquer the world.
(Miss America Comics#1/2) - A few weeks later, Madeline Joyce was reading a newspaper (Daily Bugle) and noticed two seemingly unrelated news items: one, concerning escaped felon Lifer Larch, who was still at large; the other, about the disappearance of three prominent citizens. She later changed into her costume and (as Miss America), she went to the home of the most recently missing man--John Greene--to begin her investigation and followed a lead to the scientist's lab.
As the heroine approached the lab, she was seen by Larch, who alerted Drakla of her arrival. Drakla sent one of his Monster Men (Number Three) to "greet" Miss America. After a brief struggle, Miss America knocked the monster off a cliff, but she was struck from behind by another Monster Man wielding a club. The creature carried the unconscious heroine to Drakla and he ordered it to throw her into a holding cell. Miss America later awoke and broke free, but she was attacked by the Monster Man, so she punched the creature and knocked it out. She made her way to the operating room, where she found Drakla and Larch standing over John Greene, who was bound to the operating table. Before the hideous surgery could begin, Miss America punched Drakla aside, then released Greene and told him to get the police. Meanwhile, Drakla and Larch ran to the laboratory and the scientist brought his two biggest and most powerful Monster Men to life, then he sent the aggregated abominations after Miss America. The monsters chased the heroine to the citadel's rooftop, but one of the creatures clumsily fell off the roof. As the other monster stood before Miss America, the heroine recognized its head and face as that of Judge Hendrick. She mentioned the name, and the creature began to remember who it had previously been. Enraged by the atrocious deed that Drakla had committed upon it, the Monster Man turned on the scientist and Larch. As Drakla saw his plans falling apart, he thought of how he had to turn off the electrical equipment before the place blew up, but he was seized by the monster, flung off the ledge and met his doom on the rocks below. The monster turned toward Larch, so the fugitive pulled his gun and fired several shots at it, causing the creature to fall off the ledge as well. Miss America punched and disarmed Larch, then flew off with him just as the citadel exploded and burned from an apparent short-circuit.
Comments: Created by an uncredited writer and Pauline Loth (artist).
In his invitation to John Greene, Drakla didn't mention where his lab was located, yet both Greene and Miss America were able to find it easily. Miss America mentioned that Drakla was once a reputable scientist, so my guess is that he was a famous (albeit eccentric) surgeon who was known for his revolutionary theories for transplant surgeries, and the location of his lab was public knowledge. Drakla's lab had to be close to New York City because Miss America was able to reach it in a short time, so I'll guess that it was near the Catskill Mountains.
The large and disproportionate appearances of the Monster Men would suggest that there was more done to them than simply combining various body parts together--maybe Drakla's reanimation process included some kind of chemically-induced mutation that caused freakish growth in his creations.
And maybe Drakla had some association with members of the Frankenstein family--in particular, Basil Frankenstein, who conducted similar experiments at about the same time.
Although Professor Drakla never mentioned anything of his ancestry, I suppose it's possible he could be related to Dracula--the lord of vampires was known to have at least one human descendant in modern times (Frank Drake @ Tomb of Dracula I#1), so there could be others. Maybe "Drakla" is a corruption of the pronunciation/spelling of the original surname.
And a BIG Thank You to Pappy's Golden Age for the scans!
Profile by John Kaminski.
Professor Drakla has no known connections to:
The Monster Men have no known connections to:
John Greene was one of the men responsible for sending Lifer Larch to prison. After Larch and Professor Drakla made a pact to work together, Drakla sent Greene an invitation and lured him to his lab. Before the mad scientist could use Greene for his experiments, Greene was saved by the arrival of Miss America and presumably returned home to his wife.
--Miss America Comics#1/2
Armed with a handgun, Lifer Larch was an escaped convict who was serving a life sentence for his crimes. One night, he broke out of prison and ran across the countryside. Hours later, he came upon the citadel of Professor Drakla and went inside, where he found the scientist about to operate on a live man. Drakla was reluctant to kill the man for his experiment, so Larch killed the victim for him. Larch made an agreement with Drakla to supply him with more experimental subjects by giving him a list of all the men responsible for sending him to prison, and Drakla would use the body parts to create his Monster Men. When Drakla's schemes were ended by the timely intervention of Miss America, Larch was saved by the heroine, who carried him aloft just as Drakla's citadel blew up from an apparent short-circuit--presumably, Larch was then turned over to the authorities and charged with further crimes.
--Miss America Comics#1/2
Numbering at least four, the Monster Men were the patchwork creations of Professor Drakla. They were made from the body parts of several men (including Judge Hendrick), had great strength, and were mindlessly obedient to their creator. They were reanimated with electricity. Two of the Monster Men stood about 7 feet tall, while the larger two were about 9 feet tall. Three of the Monster Men were killed when they fell from great heights, and the fourth apparently died in the fire that destroyed Drakla's citadel.
--Miss America Comics#1/2
Miss America Comics#1/2, p11, pan4 (main image)
Other Appearances: None
Last updated: 07/19/10
Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.
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