Maxie’s obsession, Fantômas, is a fictional character created by French writers Marcel Allain and Pierre Souvestre and remains one of the most popular characters in the history of French crime fiction. He was created in 1911 and appeared in a total of 32 volumes written by the two collaborators, then a subsequent 11 volumes written by Allain alone after Souvestre’s death.
The character was also the basis of various film, television, and comic book adaptations. In the history of crime fiction, he represents a transition from Gothic novel villains of the 19th century to modern-day serial killers.
• There’s more about Fantômas on www.fantomas-lives.com, along with links to many other resources about the character’s many incarnations