Literature: Professor Challenger

Professor Challenger is a fictional professor from the works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. (Yes. That guy.) He starred in a series of books (starting with The Lost World) usually narrated by his friend Edward Malone.

  • 1912 - The Lost World, which describes an expedition to a plateau in South America where ancient creatures, including dinosaurs, still survive.
  • 1913 - The Poison Belt, in which the Earth passes through a cloud of poisonous ether.
  • 1926 - The Land of Mist, an Author Tract on spiritualism.

Short stories:
  • 1928 - When the World Screamed, on Challenger's World Echinus theory. Considerably less scary than the title implies.
  • 1929 - The Disintegration Machine, concerning the potentially dangerous new invention by a scientist named Theodore Nemor.

While fun and easy to read, the series never really caught on beyond the first book and many readers of The Lost World are unaware of the later stories. It seems like none of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's characters can escape from the shadow of that other character.

Works in the Professor Challenger series with their own trope page include:

Other works in the series provide examples of the following tropes:

  • Badass Bookworm
  • Dug Too Deep: Professor Challenger's experiment in "When the World Screamed".
  • Faux Death: In The Poison Belt, the eponymous region of space contains a gas that apparently kills everyone on Earth; even Professor Challenger, who had predicted the phenomenon, is only able to stave off the inevitable for himself and a few friends for a little while so they can observe the phenomenon. In the end, however, it turns out the gas only rendered everyone unconscious until Earth moved out of it again, and the only actual deaths were those caused by the traffic accidents, etc. that resulted from everybody losing consciousness.
  • Genius Loci: Earth itself in "When the World Screamed".
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: The Professor and his wife.
  • Remember the New Guy: The Professor's daughter Enid. She appears without warning in The Land of Mist with no prior indication of her existence. One would she would at least warrant a mention in The Poison Belt, when the characters are discussing their loved ones who are apparently dead or dying.