REVIEW: B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth #130

Writer: Mike Mignola, John Arcudi
Artist: Peter Snejbjerg
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Cover Artist: Laurence Campbell
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: 04/15/2015

I am really glad to have this book to review. I reviewed the last issue and the on going crazy / horror element,  gave it a chaotic feel. This issue is more of a character piece, which actually serves to grab my interest more.

Following last issue’s battle, the team are returning to base. What starts as an attempt to bond, ends up causing a disagreement that sows the seeds for the rise, of the two involved, personal demons. Seems like good intentions are definitely the flagstones on the road to Hell at least, more so for Agent Johann. Cue the introspective, the over reaction and the thoughtless comments that, allows people to laugh at rather than laugh with and a conversation that is  scripted so well, showing the bluntness, the inappropriate comments disguising the cry for help that it actually is.

The history of Agent Johann is starting to come out, as he is struggling to fit in with the team and the world. It appears that he is not the only dark soul in the team, but it also apparently his has a friend, even if he doesn’t see her stand up for him. Being the outcast is something we can all relate to, whether it’s a new school or workplace or new area we move to. It’s this relatability that helps ground this “monster” book.

Mignola and Arcudi work well in tandem, both in the plot and the script department. There are too many highlights, from the jibe “never seen a man scare a ghost”, to the more poignant plea ushered by Johann.  The art is by, Peter Snejbjerg and is an improvement on last issue, at least facially. It’s not that Snejbjerg is a better artist than James Harden, but he is definitely more suited to the character driven issue that this is. I can’t comment on the art alone without mentioning Dave Stewart. Yet again, Stewart’s colours are fabulous, giving each environment its own feel without compromising the bigger picture.

Last issue, I was kinda on the fence regarding this series. That can happen when you pick up just one book, especially if it’s a final chapter. After reading this issue however, with a little more understanding of the characters, I can see why this book, and in part Mignola’s horror niche, is so popular.

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