Introduction On Racism Epigraphs A History of the Pulps A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Glossary and Character Taxonomy Breakdown by Country of Origin Bibliography Table of Contents The Best of the Encyclopedia
Bakterev. Bakterev was created by the Russian author Pavel Perov and appeared in the novel Bratstvo Viia (1925).
Bakterev is a Mad Scientist. Bakterev is “a collaborator of the Jewish conspirators who have brought about the Bolshevik Revolution” in Russia. He is a leader of the Brotherhood of the Vii and has for years been summoning “dead souls” and implanting them into ectoplasm extracted from living humans. The resulting beings are called “mortomats” and are controlled by the Brotherhood’s machines. A defector from the Brotherhood, Professor Werner, flees to New York with one of the machines and begins using the mortomats to commit murders, converting the bodies of his victims into new mortomats. Eventually an Irish-American reporter, a White cavalry officer, and the officer’s Cossack orderly find the Brotherhood’s headquarters in the Baltic forests. The trio defeat a phalanx of reanimated Roman soldiers and then destroy the Brotherhood’s machines, leading to a general mortomat rebellion and the suicide of Bakterev.
* I'm including Bakterev in the Best of the Encyclopedia category because of the ideasplosions in Bratstvo Viia. Usually ideasplosions take place over a long period of time in pulps, one or two per issue. Pavel Perov does the much more difficult thing, in Bratstvo Viia, of piling the fantastic ideas, one upon another, until the entire novel is just an ongoing fantasia of awesomeness. A lesser author would have stuck with the antisemitic "Jewish conspirators who caused the Revolution" and "occult brotherhood summoning dead souls" concepts, but Perov couldn't help himself and brought in mortomats, murder victims becoming remote-controlled zombies, reanimated Roman soldiers, and the mortomat rebellion. Well done, Perov! (except for the antisemitic part).
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