Friday, May 30, 2014

Review: Hellboy in Hell, Vol. 1: The Descent (Hellboy in Hell #1-5) by Mike Mignola

Release Date: May 21, 2014
Publisher: Dark Horse
Source: NetGalley
Author Links: Goodreads | Website

After saving the world in The Storm and the Fury but sacrificing himself and Great Britain, Hellboy is dead, cast into Hell, where he finds many familiar faces and a throne that awaits him.
Mike Mignola returns to draw Hellboy’s ongoing story for the first time since Conqueror Worm. It’s a story only Mignola could tell, as more of Hellboy’s secrets are at last revealed, in the most bizarre depiction of Hell you’ve ever seen.

Collects issues #1–#5.

I've read very little about Hellboy in the past (maybe 1 or 2 volumes?), so I'm not exactly an expert on Mignola's creation. In fact, the majority of what I think I know about Hellboy comes from the movies. So you can basically take my review with a grain of salt.

The hardest thing for me to overcome was the artwork.
Ever since I read Hawkeye: My Life as a Weapon, I've been trying to become more tolerant when it comes to graphic novels that don't have what I consider to be traditionally nice art.
See? I'm growing up. Maturing, if you will.
And I have to admit, that Mignola's style grew on me a little by the end. However, there were several times that I simply couldn't figure out what the hell just happened. Sorry, but does the blob of red splashed across the black background mean that he just fell off a cliff? Did he hit someone? Did the Devil go down to Georgia? Or maybe Mignola accidentally spilled his ink, and decided it looked cool?
I just...ehhhh?
Acceptable answers:
1) I'm not very smart.
2) I'm not artsy-fartsy enough to get what the author meant.
3) The art was weird and ambiguous at times.

As far as the story?
Hellboy is in Hell, due to (I'm just spitballing here) some major fight with a bad guy, that most likely ended in his death.
So now he's just kinda wandering around. Of course, there seems to be no end to the demony things that want to kill him, and he's forced to fight for his life. Which is odd, since he's, um, dead.
Once he kills everyone he needs to kill, there are also a few stories about some of the people he meets in Hell.
I wasn't riveted, but this was ok.
Recommended for Hardcore Hellboy fans.


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