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Review Group Hellboy: The Bride of Hell

Chris had the pick for new comics shipping December 23rd and he selected Hellboy: The Bride of Hell by Mike Mignola, Richard Corben and Dave Stewart.

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The Review Group is a collection of posters who get together and review a new comic each week that we each take turns selecting. Our threads can be found in The Outhouse’s News Stand forum and is open for anyone and everyone to participate in.

Hellboy is just about the greatest comic on the planet in my estimation, but could it possibly compete with the holidays for the Review Group's attention?  Just barely...
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Review by starlord

I'm embarrassed to say that this is the very first Hellboy comic I've ever read. Though I did get the first trade from Fourthman for Christmas; thanks again Fourthman!

I liked it. It did seem a bit derivative in nature, but having never read Hellboy before, I found the character himself to be fun and fresh. This has made me even more excited to delve into that first volume.

Story: 6
Art: 7
My Score: 6.5
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Review by Chubbles

This was pretty good. Also my first Hellboy book although he didn't matter. It did give me a glimpse into Mignola’s style and I liked it. I’ll probably get the trades or those big library editions at some point down the line.

Story 8
Art 8
Overall 8
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Review by Chris

Story - This was pretty good, if not completely predictable. I'm not sure if I've seen this story play out elsewhere or what, but it felt very familiar. Not the best Hellboy story I've ever read, but certainly not the worst.

8/10

Art - I'm usually not a fan of Richard Corben's art for some reason, but it worked for this story. There's a certain vibe that all Hellboy books need to have, and he delivered on that front.

7/10

Overall: 7.5/10
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Review by Jude Terror

I've never read a Hellboy comic, or seen the Hellboy movies. I have never had even the smallest bit of interest in the character. The concept just seemed lame to me, and I hate the way Hellboy looks. So I was feeling very "meh" about picking this up, but it was the first book of my stack I read this month because I wanted to review it for this group. I was... pleasantly surprised.

I see a lot of discussion here about whether the Dark Horse one shot books are good for new readers. For this one in particular, I'd have to say it is, because it allowed someone (me) who had no interest in Hellboy at all to read the story, enjoy it, and maybe feel a little bit more open-minded about reading some Hellboy in the future.

The story was decent. Nothing groundbreaking, of course, but it was interesting enough, with some predictable twists, and didn't require any kind of knowledge of the series to understand. Hellboy himself seemed sort of irrelevant to the story, in that any character could have taken his place, but for me that was a good thing. It allowed me to read a Hellboy story without feeling the normal doucechilliness that I get from the character. This will perhaps make me less adverse to reading a story with him in the future.

6 of 10

The art wasn't the greatest. It wasn't poorly done, but it wasn't beautiful. The style didn't bother me, and seemed a little too cartoonish for the story.

4 of 10


Overall: 5 of 10

A decent book, far surpassing my expectations.
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Review by guitarsmashley

So like I said as this thread went on, I didn't like this comic. From story to art I just didn't like it. This could have literally been any occult themed book but it was a hellboy story that barely felt like Hellboy. I'm not the biggest fan of Corben so his art was a drawback. My preference when it comes to hellboy artists are Mignola, Fegredo, P. Craig Russel, anyone else and then Corben. I am a hellboy reader and I look for any Hellboy comic to continue the story of the son of the devil and this was not it at all which is just a crushing disappointment. It pains me to review this because every hellboy story I've read be it 4 pages or 6 issues is anywhere from a solid 7-10 but this story was not. It hurts me so much to give this my score.


4

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Review by thefourthman

"I have said before and will say again, it is a marvelous time to be a comic reader. The diversity of genre is almost as rich as any other point in the history of the medium. With the onset of webcomics and the proliferation of the bound collection, the ideas behind how to get comics into the hands of those not reading them are also becoming more and more creative. DC had the "After Watchmen" program, the dollar Vertigo #1s, or promotional rings. Marvel puts out free Sagas, has mastered the event tie-in, and is swiftly grasping onto the marketing opportunities provided by hit Hollywood features.

Not to be left in the lurch, Dark Horse debuted it’s "Quick Shots" program back in October. Starting with Star Wars: Invasion #0, the publisher set out to print nine one-shots of some of its most popular (and a couple of newer) titles. The idea was to give readers a chance to check out some great books that they may not have already been reading and the clever “Suffering from crossover fatigue?” dig at the top of the ads was meant to catch the attention of those DC and Marvel fanboys tired of reading every title to satiate their hobby.

Hellboy: The Bride of Hell is the penultimate of these special comics. Conan will finish the program in early 2010. Some books, like Sugar Shock, had no choice but to be accessible; there are no other comics for them to work from. Books like The Goon #33 are less successful at being great introductions for newcomers, but are satisfying as stand-alone stories.

Hellboy: The Bride of Hell is the best of both worlds. No prior knowledge of the series is required to get the story, while it tells one complete story for those acclimated or new to it or in between. I am reading Hellboy in those giant Library Editions. I felt like nothing was spoiled here, while the mythology that Mignola is building felt expanded and expounded upon. In fact, this issue was as revelatory as most mini-series from any publisher."

to read thefourthman's full review, go here: http://brokenfrontier.com/reviews/p/detail/hellboy-the-bride-of-hell

I've thought long and hard about the score. Honestly, I can't find anything wrong with this issue. I give it a 10.

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Review by House of J

I thought this was a great hook for new readers, a solid, lengthy occult-themed parable that didn't rely on back-story new readers might not be privy to or leave them with any questions beyond asking themselves why they haven't been reading more of Mignola's stuff lately.

I'm a big fan of Richard Corben, but I know he's an acquired taste especially for folks who didn't grow up on the kind of classic EC horror comics this one-shot has a lot in common with. I love his work, it's great there's a lot of it popping up in books at Dark Horse or Marvel lately, with Starr the Slayer or HP Lovecraft's Haunt of Horror mini. I think he does a great job here as well, although it may not be the best showcase for his strengths as an illustrator.

9

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Review by 48THRiLLS

I have no previous knowledge of Hellboy except the movies which I enjoyed. I haven't read a Hellboy comic for the same reason I have not read Fables or Sandman... which is the fact that there is a whole lot of volumes going on and I just haven't had the cash to dive in. Anyhow, this was not quite a Hellboy comic but more of a comic that had Hellboy in it, so from that standpoint I was a bit disappointed. Aside from that however this was a neat little one shot, I definitely did not see the twist at the end coming at all. This was not a great comic but it was a inoffensive safe fun read it may not have me running to amazon with my credit card to purchase volumes and volumes of Hellboy books but it gave me an idea of what I am missing in this title and maybe I will check out some of the trades sooner than later. The art on this was very stylistic, I didn't quite love it but it didn't make my eyes hurt either.

STORY - 7.5
ART - 6.5
OVERALL - 7

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Review by GHERU

To be honest, I am not the biggest fan of Hellboy comics and I think that it because none of the ones that I have read ever "feel" like the movies. I know that I should be able to separate the movies from the comics, but for some reason in this case I cannot, maybe that's due to the fact that the moves felt so very much like a comic, or whatever.

But, in the case of "Bride of Hell" I think I finally found that Hellboy book that I really enjoyed. This book was touching in a very weird way where I ended up feeling bad for the demon and his bride. Although the book still lacked the humor that I like from the movies, it did provide an empathetic quality that I appreciated.

story 8
art 7
overall 7.5
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That gives Hellboy: The Bride of Hell a perplexing group score of 7.17.  Needless to say, I am suspicious of this score as it is not one befitting the best comic on the planet.  When my copy of the issue arrives, I will get to the bottom of this.

For further discussion of this book or to witness the latest fourthman snob explosion (No Punchy nerd fight this week... Hey!  Where is Punchy?!?! Oh wait, nevermind, he turned up), join us in this week's thread (http://www.theouthousers.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=34368) found in the News Stand forum where you are also invited to post your own review.
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Diamond might be taking next week off, but the Review Group doesn't stop for anyone. Next week will be a special Webcomics Week!  Look for the new thread after it becomes available Wednesday morning to post your own reviews of your favorite webcomics.

The Outhouse is sponsored this week by Late Nite Draw. Recently featured on ComicsAlliances' Best Art Ever, he is a Chicago-based commissioned artist with a self-published Digital+Print one-shot coming out in October about the abominable snowman called ABOBAMANIMABBLE, and is also available for commissions. Check out some amazing art by clicking here or by clicking the banner at the top, and support the people who support The Outhouse.


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