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‘Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: The Secret of Chesbro House #1’ - Advance Comic Book Review

One of my favorite things about Hellboy is that he has a talent for understatement in almost blue-collar kind of way. He doesn’t curse or swear, he’s just over it. He’s a working stiff who just happens to be a demon.

Since the main Hellboy series ended, we’ve been lucky to get him in short bursts. The first of this two-part series sets up a haunted house that needs to be cleared of a curse; the whos, whats, wheres, and whys are all smartly and enjoyably laid out by Mignola and Golden (who have been spending a lot of their time building the Outerverse). It’s almost like we’re getting the opening pages of a murder mystery in which all of the potential murderers are given to us (even though that might be mostly impossible in this case), and each character brings a deeper understanding to the history of the curse. Needless to say, things get out of hand relatively quickly.

Shawn McManus’s art is really just stellar. As we get into the nuts and bolts of the haunting, his images pop off the page. It doesn’t hurt that master colorist Dave Stewart takes us on a roller coaster ride of color palettes. There’s something about his work that really draws you into the world a step at a time.

This story of slamming cabinet doors, things whooshing past, and any myriad of haunted house happenings keeps Clem Robins quite busy, lettering the hell out of this issue.

The Hellboy world means a lot to me - it just does - and when he’s called out in the first few pages of this as being someone who likes to solve things with his fists, it sets up perhaps a second issue in which he’ll be forced to do something a little different, and that excites me.


Creative Team: Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden (writers), Shawn McManus (artists), Dave Stewart (colors), Clem Robins (lettering), Katii O’Brien (editor), Jenny Blenk (associate editor), Patrick Satterfield (designer), Ann Gray (digital art technician), Mike Richardson (publisher)
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
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