It really struck such a chord because he never asked to be created, let alone misunderstood, tortured, feared, and hunted. This didn't come across to me as a creature hell-bent on being evil, it was just never taught right from wrong, and lacked comprehension of its size and strength. This film definitely had me sympathizing with the monster at an early age. And the monster didn't scare me at all, but the torch-wielding villagers have always left me a bit afraid of angry mobs of people.
I think Frankenstein's monster was my very favorite character of all those from the classic horror films. In fact, when I was very young - maybe even before I'd seen the movie - I remember getting a glow-in-the-dark poster of Frankenstein's monster from a cereal box. I had my Mom hang it on the wall right next to my bed after reassuring her that no, it would not scare me to bits in the middle of the night. It never did...it was actually a comfort to wake up in the night and see the soft green glow of the poster. But since I wasn't afraid, I think that may have freaked my Mom out enough to eventually take it down of her own accord. After all, aren't we supposed to be afraid of monsters?
Or....maybe that didn't bother her at all, and I just got tired of having it up. Who knows?
Image source: Wikipedia