Friday, September 24, 2010

Trade Marks: Hellboy Vol. 6 Strange Places

I am a relative latecomer to the Hellboy Universe, but I've been catching up whenever I can find the trades at a discounted price. Up to this point, I've been very impressed by Mignola's skills as a storyteller. For the most part, he lets his pictures do the talking, and keeps his artwork simple, encouraging the reader to fill in many of the details. This is actually quite a rewarding experience, as the Hellboy's world unfolds at a deliberate pace. This collection, however, left me feeling a bit cold. Hellboy is away from the BPRD and these tales lean more toward the magical/mystical. Those themes often don't sit well with me, because I don't understand the basic ground rules. I know that kryptonite can kill Superman, but I've never really understood what kills Dr. Strange. For me, those types of stories require a bit more exposition, so that the reader gets a sense of parameters. Mignola's minimalism does not work as well here, as it is difficult to tell if Hellboy is ever truly in peril. Of the story arcs here, I prefer the "Three Wishes" as it was infused with a real sense of pathos. I think the Sargasso Sea provides an incredible springboard for ideas, but Mignola missed an opportunity and fell short. After putting it down, I realized that I hadn't laughed once. That hadn't happened before with Hellboy. It was good, not great. Some important character and mythology building, but lacklustre stories. Grade: B

1 comment:

Blogger said...

NeoBux is a very recommended get-paid-to website.