The film is a contemporary (1920s) picture that takes place in New York City. The story involves a mad scientist who turns circumstances on a young man to do his bidding.
Robert Sandell (Raymond McKee), despondent over his ill luck as a writer, and his mother’s declining health, attacks and attempts to rob a theatergoer, Dr. Lamb (Lon Chaney Sr.), a sinister, fanatical physician living in the suburbs of New York. Lamb takes the boy to his home, learns his story, and agrees to perform an operation on Mrs. Sandell (Virginia True Boardman) on one consideration – that Robert shall at the end of eight days, deliver himself to the doctor to do with as he will, for experimental purposes. Frantic with worry over his dying mother’s condition, Robert agrees.