Monday, August 23, 2010

Hellboy: The Chained Coffin and Others & The Right Hand of Doom, a Review

hellboy3 The Chained Coffin and Others is different from the previous two volumes in the Hellboy saga. Volume 3 is a collections of small vignettes that re-tells folktales Mike Mignola has come across. One such example is "The Chained Coffin," which stems from an Irish folktale the author once read.

Like the first two collections, this volume is beautifully illustrated and wonderfully scripted. The colors are still rich and dark, capturing the essence of the gothic-horror feel. The characters are getting more developed, especially Hellboy, and I'm very interested to see how his future will play out.

Also included in this collection is a story about the Baba Yaga, of whom I was interested from the Fables series as well as some previous stories of Hellboy. In fact, there are several short, wonderfully dark tales that any fan of folklore or fairy tales will love.

Overall, this collection was highly enjoyable, easing off the familiar plot of the previous volumes and venturing into short-story. Still, even these short tales add to the complex character of Hellboy and his world, and I was most impressed with Mignola's work. This is a highly recommendable addition to the so-far excellent series.

***

hellboy4 The Right Hand of Doom is similar to Volume 3, in that it collects a few short folktales in the beginning of the book and one longer story arc, "The Right Hand of Doom," to finish the work.

Like the previous edition, the short stories are all beautiful renditions of global tales I've never heard. Mignola deals with mostly European folklore, but he also includes a Japanese story in this issue that I found beautiful and interesting.

One thing I really liked about this volume was the revelations of Hellboy and his destiny. Most of these tales hint at his purpose in this world, and "The Right Hand of Doom" comes right out and tells it. Coupled with breathtaking artwork, the plot moves along nicely and captures the reader's attention.

The Right Hand of Doom
doesn't carry the same conventional story progression as Volumes 1 & 2 do, but it's still a great addition to the Hellboy universe, easily worthy to sit alongside the rest. And with the truth about Hellboy coming out, I'm certainly eager to see where the hero will go now.

4 comments:

Kailana said...

I wouldn't mind reading this series at some point and time, but I have too many series on the go at the moment. When things calm down a bit I will give it a try...

logankstewart said...

@Kailana: If you liked Fables then you'd definitely like Hellboy. It's beautiful, full of myth and folklore, and tells a great story (so far). Enjoy whenever you start.

Carl V. said...

I like the short story vibe of both of these collections. I'm hard pressed to pick a favorite Hellboy collection, but Chained Coffin might be right near the top if I had to.

As I've said before, I'm glad you are reading these as they really are great.

logankstewart said...

@Carl: Aye, my current read-through status has stalled. The library has only Vol.1 and I won't be seeing my friend that I borrowed these from for a few more weeks. Eventually I'll get back to them, and when I do there'll be reviews.