Review by – GreenBasterd
After a short hiatus Hellboy returns to the scene in his sixth issue of “Hellboy in Hell”. With all the references in the “B.P.R.D.” and “Abe Sapien” to events in Hell, it is crazy to see how much this ongoing influences the rest of the Mignolaverse. Hellboy is clearly at a bit of a loss as to what to do since death but fortunately for him Hell is full of people who would love to take a shot at the champ, occupying his thoughts in the process.
WRITTEN BY: Mike Mignola
ART BY: Mike Mignola and Dave Stewart
PUBLISHER: Dark Horse Comics
RELEASE DATE: May 14
Picking up right where we left off in the previous issue, Hellboy is given a geography lesson on Hell by new undead friends until his conversation is rudely interrupted by a damned soul wanting to play a hand of cards. Hellboy once again is in for more than he bargained for. What started off as a simple card game turns into a life and death struggle but there is always more beneath the surface when Mike Mignola is at the helm. As the story comes to a close interesting events occur that foreshadow our protagonists uncertain future.
These books always come as a treat. Mignola is gifted in his craft, to put it simply, and this book is a testament to that fact. The first highlight of the writing is the pacing of the story. It starts off slow but quickly jumps in pace leading to the last few pages with a whirlwind of action. The careful storytelling consumes me entirely, and I never want it to end.
A fantastic aspect of most Mignola work, including this series, is his ability to interject small panels with simple illustrations and one or two words that can add so much depth and tone. This issue is riddled with these types of panels that give Hell a very eerie and lonely feeling, having a major influence on the overall delivery. This is someone who understands the medium of comics like no other.
Never has an artistic tandem impressed me more than Mike Mignola and Dave Stewart; the simplified style that Mignola is famous for is brought to life the by Stewart’s soft colour pallet. One panel that I really love is of Hellboy draped in shadows as he is walking from beneath an archway with playing cards raining down on him and from the depth of that archway two red glowing eyes are visible. This is just one panel of many I could say is my favourite but for me this single illustration represents Hellboy himself, always trying to break free from the shadows but there are always sinister powers at work trying to stop this from happening.
Really a fantastic issue, it comes and goes fast but its layout makes it feel like its own little story arc. Hopefully future issues really start to tie Hellboy back into the grand scheme of things.