Frankenstein’s Cat is a 2007 picture book created by Curtis Jobling (Dinosaurs After Dark; Haunt; Wereworld series) that follows the exploits of Doctor Frankenstein’s first experiment. The cat is created by the Doctor out of nine different cats, leading to his name being Nine. He has no friends and feels lonely, which leads up to him asking the Doctor to create him a friend. Nine learns to be “careful what you wish for”, as the Doctor creates a companion that is more than Nine can handle.
Curtis Jobling’s book has been adapted into an animated series by MacKinnon & Saunders (UK) and Kayenta Productions (France), although it should not be confused with the 1942 Mighty Mouse cartoon Frankenstein’s Cat. A digital animation made entirely in Flash, the modern Frankenstein’s Cat consists of thirty 11 minute episodes. The series generally follows the exploits of hyperactive Franken-pet Nine and his best (and only) friend Lottie as they outwit, outrun and generally outdo the citizens of Oddsburg.
France 3 aired the premiere the Monday before Halloween in 2007, the BBC aired the show in January 2008. Thus far, Frankenstein’s Cat has been distributed to Spain, Benelux, Southeast Asia, Latin-America, Israel, Australia, France and Britain.
Nine is Dr Frankenstein’s first creation: a monster stitched together out of nine different cats (his name is also a pun on the myth that cats have nine lives). Like all cats, he is naturally curious, and very playful. He might make mistakes sometimes, but he always means well. He is often tricked or bullied by his three ugly sisters, Igora, Heidi and Fifi. His best (and only) friend is Lottie, and he is fiercely protective of her. Nine is voiced by Joe Pasquale for CBBC.
Lottie is the only girl in Oddsburg, and a relative newcomer. She is on good terms with Doctor Frankenstein, and considers Nine to be her best (and only) friend. She is mischievous by nature, but also kind-hearted, if a little lazy at times. Lottie is also fiercely determined and quite intelligent, easily able to hold her own with the boys. Lottie is voiced by Alex Kelly for CBBC.
German-accented Dr Frankenstein aspires to be a brilliant mad scientist like all of his forefathers, and most of his time is spent dreaming up mad experiments. Unfortunately, most of his experiments turn out to be failures. Whenever he discards a failed monster, he throws it down into the castle’s “Wrong Things” dungeon. Although Heidi, Igora and Fifi treat Nine with disdain, the Doctor isn’t bothered with his first creation, although he wishes he could create something more fearsome. He doesn’t seem to mind Lottie, and sometimes sends her strange gifts via Nine as a thank-you for sorting monster-related issues out. His voice is provided by Keith Wickham.
Fifi, Heidi and Igora
A dog, hamster and chicken, respectively. Nine’s three ugly sisters are all very vain, and are fond of teasing Nine and playing nasty tricks on him. They seem to view the doctor with some contempt, and long for a more glamorous life. Heidi stands out from the others by being a “were-hamster”.
Pipsquawk is the diminutive son of Oddsburg’s Mayor, who constantly spoils him. He is the leader of the town’s gang of four boys, and is usually the loudest one in proclaiming his hatred of girls. His arch-rival is Lottie, who is not only a girl, but a girl who is more talented than he is. His voice is provided by Keith Wickham.
Clever Trevor is Oddsburg’s token Nerd, and the second-in-command in Pipsquawk’s gang. With big cokebottle glasses, and sporting a lisp, Trevor is the custodian of the inaugural Big Boy’s Book of Big Boy Stuff. Voice provided by Keith Wickham.
Sallow-skinned, goggle-eyed Sweeny is one of the four boys in Oddsburg and is considered to be the most disgusting. He takes an extensive interest in anything slimy, smelly or snotty, and also likes morbid and “scary” things. Voice provided by Teresa Gallagher.
Bigtop is the gentle giant of Oddsburg’s four boys. He has a simple mind and is often amused by things that would normally seem unbecoming of an Oddsburg boy. His father reads accountant tales to him as bedtime stories. He is voiced by Jimmy Hibbert.
Mr Crumble is Oddsburg’s only teacher. His personality often variates between affable and paranoid, and usually utilizes both traits whilst teaching. He appears to be quite fond of Lottie because she actually takes an interest in learning. Voice provided by Jimmy Hibbert.
Gutner Van Halen
Van Halen, the “Monster Man” is a monster hunter who, as he puts it, “dedicated his life and limbs to their destruction”, which is saying something, as he has sustained a few scars in his career; he lost his left arm whilst capturing a Two-Headed Transylvanian Zombie and lost his nose to a Giant Blood-Sucking Leech of the Black Lagoon. How he lost his left eye and his right leg are not known.