The BPRD: The Devil You Know #10
NYC has always been a hell of a town, but the saying has never been quite so literal as it is in this book. The surviving members of the BPRD battle The Girl’s demonic army on three fronts while Hellboy, Ashley, Fenix, Carla, Abe, and something dressed in Devon's cast-off skin stalk to the center of the charnel wreck to face off with the creepy-cute demon bent on founding New Dis in the ashes of America.
This issue was more of a bridge than a story, leading as it does from one character-driven plot point to what will prove to be the final resolution of the arc, but this is not a weakness. Bridges are necessary pieces of infrastructure and this issue contained elements which will prove to be vital to constructing a satisfactory conclusion to the sequence.
The comic basically consisted of Director Devon being reanimated by demonic possession and attempting to mislead his crew into a trap. There were a great many (extremely satisfying, in a blood-and-guts sort of way) fight scenes involving hoards of delightfully designed monsters (the Crickets were my favorites) and there were three significant deaths.
The characters are, by this point, three-dimensional enough that the readers can draw significance from scenes which might otherwise appear to be rushed. Carla was the recipient of the least-elaborate send-off. A bullet to the brain seemed, somehow, too banal — considering everything that the character had been through and the world that she inhabited, but that jarring discord was part of the effect.
Ashley’s death hit me harder, but then her character has always resonated with me. She got a page and a half to prove her mettle and, in doing so, she was numinous in battle. She did not let her sword fall from her hands.
The writing was, as I said, more focused on getting us there than providing insight. In that sense Mignola was more utilitarian than usual. His script was more like a hammer than a scalpel. But sometimes you need a really good hammer.
This one packed a wallop.
As for the art, it was a little more rushed in places (the Cricket battle was a little blurred) but Campbell brought his A-game to the important bits. As I said, the death of Ashley Strode was magnificent.
And that last page?
Let’s just say that long-time readers of Hellboy and the general Mignolaverse are going to be really excited to see this guy again.
Personally, I cannot wait to see what happens next.
This issue serves as a bridge between episodes, but that's not a bad thing. Ragnarok is coming.
The BPRD:The Devil You Know #10, Monsters in Manhattan
- Writing - 8.5/108.5/10
- Storyline - 8.5/108.5/10
- Art - 9/109/10
- Color - 9/109/10
- Cover Art - 9.5/109.5/10
User Review( votes)