Hellboy – Strange Places (vol. 2)
Hellboy’s complete story is presented for the first time in chronological order for the ultimate reading experience. This 416-page volume covers Hellboy’s adventures from 1998 to 2005, reprinting Conqueror Worm, Strange Places, Into the Silent Sea, and “The Right Hand of Doom, “Box Full of Evil,” and “Being Human” from The Right Hand of Doom and B.P.R.D. Being Human. Hellboy loses faith in the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense when they strap a bomb to one of his fellow not-quite-human agents. He gets answers about his destiny, like it or not, in over 300 pages of comics mostly drawn by Mignola, featuring award-winning guests Gary Gianni and Richard Corben.
I’ll say it again, this is for the fans that have always loved the Hellboy series, but was confused about the timeline. The new paperback volumes will now be able to alleviate all of the frustration involved. Hellboy Omnibus Volume 2: Strange Places is a collection of stories that were printed from 1998 to 2005, and includes Conqueror Worm, Strange Places, Into the Silent Sea, and The Right Hand of Doom, Box Full of Evil, and Being Human. This amazingly new paperback edition of the stories is presented in a chronological order, which makes it incredibly easy for readers and fans to follow Hellboy during his journey of self-discovery.
In Hellboy: The Right Hand of Doom, Hellboy meets Adrian Frost, the son of Professor Malcolm Frost who has spent his life trying to rid the world of Hellboy. A priest tries to convince Hellboy that his father fears him and that he wasn’t evil and offers to sell Hellboy the only clue that he found in his father’s notes. Box Full of Evil finds Hellboy and Abe Sapien investigating the case of a mysterious man who can paralyze a household while he digs through the walls of a gentleman’s sitting room only to pull out a small locked box and a pair of commonplace fireplace tongs. What’s in the box, and who is this man?
In Being Human, Hellboy convinces the B.P.R.D. to let him take Roger out in the field to investigate the dead bodies of the Quillen family, who walked out of their graves and returned to their estate. They also discover a black woman with a score to settle. In Conqueror Worm, Roger and Hellboy are sent to Hunte Castle, to stop the Nazi spacecraft that is estimated to crash land there. Hellboy then uncovers a horrible truth about the BPRD adding something to Roger’s internal workings when they brought him back to life. After they arrive at the castle, they realize that they were led into a dangerous trap. Trapped by the nail of the Bog Roosh, Hellboy must fight his way to freedom In The Third Wish, Hellboy has to fight for his freedom as the youngest mermaid of three proves an unlikely alliance, and reconciles with her father. Hellboy gets to meet the cursed being that set his existence into motion in The Island.
Also included in this volume is a Hellboy sketchbook with notes by Mignola. The artwork continues in the same vein as the first omnibus and mostly focuses on the dialogues and the heavily shadowed drawings. The sketchbook is a bonus to see how Mignola crafts his stories and artwork as well. It has been fantastic to read these stories in chronological order to see how Hellboy’s story unfolds. The stylised artwork and often creative storylines have always caught my attention and imagination. This also provides a new reader the opportunity to become familiar with the short stories in the Hellboy/B.P.R.D universe.
All of the stories within have also been published in their original styles and formats, and simply means that that you will be able to see when an artist changes. This could perhaps help date the stories as you are looking at a lot of books across this series and although the series does have a definitive ending, you get the feeling that with the rebooting of the franchise with a soon to be new movie, that it will be interesting to know what was kept and what wasn’t. Honestly, this has been a series I have been looking forward to for some time now, and if you’re a comic book fan of Hellboy, I’m sure you will feel the same.
About the Author
Mike Mignola’s fascination with ghosts and monsters began at an early age; reading Dracula at age twelve introduced him to Victorian literature and folklore, from which he has never recovered. Starting in 1982 as a bad inker for Marvel Comics, he swiftly evolved into a not-so-bad artist. By the late 1980s, he had begun to develop his own unique graphic style, with mainstream projects like Cosmic Odyssey and Batman: Gotham by Gaslight. In 1994, he published the first Hellboy series through Dark Horse, and several spin-off titles (B.P.R.D., Lobster Johnson, Abe Sapien, and Sir Edward Grey: Witchfinder), prose books, animated films, and two live-action films starring Ron Perlman. Along the way he worked on Francis Ford Coppola’s film Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992), was a production designer for Disney’s Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001), and was the visual consultant to director Guillermo del Toro on Blade II (2002), Hellboy (2004), and Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008), and the upcoming Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen . Mike’s books have earned numerous awards and are published in a great many countries. Mike lives in Southern California with his wife, daughter, and cat.
Title: Hellboy – Strange Places (vol. 2)
Author: Mike Mignola
Series: Hellboy Omnibus Series
Date Published: July 3, 2018
Publisher: Dark Horse Books
Illustrators: Mike Mignola, Richard Corben, Gary Gianni
Format: Paperback – 416 pages
Reviewed by: Carl Collins
Our Rating: 4.0 /5
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