Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: August 26, 2015
Oh dear, it seems Hellboy is not having a good time! Currently festering and rotting away he is feeling a little sorry for himself, when he is approached by a couple of, “saw” bones who offering him a cure for his ailments although some help with extraction is required prior to sustenance. So basically, what we have here is a quest style book.
Not having read Hellboy for sometime, I am unsure as to what is happening to him. Still that doesn’t detract from the overall flow of the story as Mike Mignola doesn’t focus too much on this element. What he does focus on is a dream/ vision sequence whose beauty is staggering when compared to the overall darkness you would expect to find in a Mignola book and the interaction between the characters involved. Looking at other Mignola-verse books, Mignola usually has a writing partner, whether it be John Arcudi or Christopher Golden. Here it’s Mignola all the way who is equally adept with words and pictures, unlike some other artists turned writers I could mention!
If the quality of the writing is a surprise, the quality of the art shouldn’t be. Mignola has been on top of his game for a number of years with his distinctive style that has spawned imitators and practically is the basis of a whole universe. Along for the ride is long time collaborator Dave Stewart. If you have ever doubted the impact Stewart has on any of the books he works on, just check out the green scenes in here. The contrast between the various worlds on show is striking and serves to help create the overall uncertainty that Hellboy must be feeling.
If you are a reader who has been put off reading Hellboy, due to the longevity of the series, this isn’t a bad jumping on point. Yes, there are elements that are carried over from previous stories, but nothing the detracts. Speaking as someone who sees the occasional Hellboy, I find these elements to be constructive and helps me want to know more about the character. For long time fans, I don’t need to tell you how good this book is.