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This article focuses on Victor Frankenstein's Land Without Color persona.
For his Storybrooke counterpart, see Dr. Whale.
For the story, see
Frankenstein (Story).
For his monster, see Gerhardt.

What I'm going to accomplish goes far beyond magic.
—Victor to Jefferson and Rumplestiltskin src

Dr. Victor Frankenstein is a character on ABC's Once Upon a Time. He débuts in the fifth episode of the second season. He is portrayed by guest star David Anders, and is the Land Without Color counterpart of Dr. Whale.

Victor Frankenstein is based on the character of the same name from the classic novel, Frankenstein.


Before First Curse

In the Land Without Color, Dr. Victor Frankenstein is celebrating Christmas with his father Alphonse and his brother Gerhardt. Alphonse gives a gift to each of his sons. To Gerhardt, he bestows a watch that had been their mother's, and Victor's gift is a commission to join the army as a physician. This will require Victor to abandon his scientific exploits, which has been funded by his father's money and housed in the family's summer home. Though Victor pleads, his father refuses to continue supporting his endeavors. Upset, Victor leaves his father's home, though Gerhardt catches up and tries to offer solace by giving him the watch. Victor refuses to take it and instead plans to find another way to complete his scientific work. As the two depart, Rumplestiltskin secretly watches from behind the shrubs. With no other alternative to continue funding the experiments, Victor packs up his equipment when suddenly Rumplestiltskin strikes up a deal with him. Rumplestiltskin is interested in learning how Victor restores life since such a feat is not possible in the land he is from, and promises him a large sum of money in exchange for these details. After Victor accepts the deal, Rumplestiltskin conjures an enormous pile of gold for him. Just then, the lab assistant Igor enters the lab, to which Victor begins introducing him to Rumplestiltskin, but the man is already gone. Victor excitedly instructs Igor to bring the equipment back so they can search for a body to experiment on. ("In the Name of the Brother")

During the night, Victor travels to a graveyard where he goes digging for a body. He is approached by Gerhardt, who thinks negatively of his brother's strategies for scientific work. They are caught by the graveyard guard, who shoots at them, but the two brothers just manage to escape in a carriage. To Victor's horror, Gerhardt sustained a gunshot wound and passes away shortly after. Victor takes his corpse to the lab, and prepares to bring him back to life via experimentation, but Gerhardt's heart can't handle the strain and burns to a blackened, charred state. Alphonse arrives and asks about the corpse Victor had brought with him. When he notices the corpse is Gerhardt's, Alphonse furiously blames Victor for his death. Despite trying to explain he wants to bring Gerhardt back so his father can have both his sons back, Alphonse angrily replies that now he has no sons. ("In the Name of the Brother")

In a bargain with Rumplestiltskin, Victor is promised a stronger, more powerful heart he can use to resurrect Gerhardt if he pretends to revive the dead lover of Queen Reigna in the Enchanted Forest. Via Jefferson's portal-jumping hat, he is brought to the Enchanted Forest and meets Regina in the gardens of her palace. She believes him to be a wizard, though he prefers the title "doctor". He is taken to see his patient, Daniel, and Victor examines the corpse by making an incision on the man's hand, which draws fresh red blood due to a preservation spell Regina cast to keep the body in perfection condition. At first, when Victor asks for a strong heart for the procedure, Regina balks until Jefferson reassures her. She opens up her mother's old vault containing innumerable enchanted hearts and offers Victor free rein to choose any one. After having his pick of a heart, he sets up a tent with Daniel's body on an operating table as Regina and Jefferson wait outside. Victor fakes a failed resurrection, as Rumplestiltskin ordered, and walks out to deliver the bad news to a heartbroken Regina. The next day, Rumplestiltskin rewards him with an enchanted heart after their terms have been satisfied, with Regina undergoing a change since permanently losing Daniel, and wishes Victor luck with creating his own "monster". They argue whether magic is the most dependable source of power with Rumplestiltskin placing a wager that Victor will need magic in the future. Confidently, he indicates he won't, but agrees nonetheless. Following a return to the Land Without Color, Victor successfully transplants the enchanted heart into Gerhardt as his brother's body begins showing signs of life. Astonished, Igor is in awe of the magic, but Victor is certain that science made this possible. ("The Doctor")

Excited by his accomplishment, Victor shows a recovering Gerhardt to Alphonse. Though Victor says Gerhardt is still adjusting, Alphonse examines him and realizes this person is not his son. In a fit of rage, Alphonse physically attacks Victor. Agitated by the commotion, Gerhardt pulls his father to the ground and beats him to death while Victor stoically watches. After the ordeal, Victor locks his brother in a tower room and decides he must put him out of his misery. When Gerhardt sees the gun, he aims the end of the barrel at his own head. However, Victor cannot bring himself to pull the trigger and leaves his brother unscathed. ("In the Name of the Brother")

For events occurring after the casting of the first curse, see Dr. Whale.


Alphonse Frankenstein
Victor Frankenstein
Gerhardt Frankenstein


  • Solid lines denote blood parent-child relationship
  • Dashed lines denote marriage and adoption relationships
  • denotes the deceased


Character Notes

Production Notes

Popular Culture

Props Notes

  • Though the credits and the show's website spell his name "Victor", the commission he is given by his father spells his name "Viktor."[3] ("In the Name of the Brother")
    • "Victor" is the Anglicanised form of the German name "Viktor".[4]
  • Victor's commission letter[3] is written in German. It transliterates as: ("In the Name of the Brother")
"Dear Doctor Viktor [sic] Frankenstein,

by the forces of power and authority, which are invested in me by the Chancellor and the Emperor's Commission, I appoint you FIELD MEDIC.
You are expected to carefully and conscientiously execute the duties of the medical field and to serve as an example to lower ranked officers and soldiers. We expect you to follow said instructions to keep order and discipline and execute future commands. Posted in arms, written by me and sealed on the third of March. By order of the Emperor invested in me, T Herman.

Captain T Herman, 34th Mobile Division
Klagenfurt, Carinthia
Klagenfurt-Land County in the name of the Minister-President of the Austrian Empire"


"Archive" denotes archive footage.


  1. Frankenstein, Harold Bloom, Chelsea House Publishers, 2004, p. 170. Facsimile by Google Books
  2. Naughty Boys: Ten Rogues of Oxford, Rob Walters, 2011, p. 75. Facsimile by Google Books
  3. 3.0 3.1 File:212Commission.PNG

Start a Discussion Discussions about Victor Frankenstein

  • Whale will be back!

    8 messages
    • The main reason I don't ship RubySlippers is that I ship Frankenwolf XD so I'm glad he's back.  Now, if only they could get R...
    • Closing this, as David Ander's return is already covered in the "returning guest stars" thread.
  • In the Name of the Brother

    8 messages
    • FrancisPaul wrote:Nurse Ratched could live there. Also, if Whale was (kind of) succesful to cheat death to revive his brother, perhaps he ...
    • Farerb wrote:Arctucrus wrote:I wish they did explore that concept more though -- of there being characters in SB not from FTL. They could exp...