Friday, July 17, 2009

Hellboy 6: Strange Places by Mike Mignola

Hellboy Strange PlacesI am a latecomer to graphic novels but I am totally enjoying Hellboy. I love how he weaves old folktales and mythology throughout the stories building them up to a great crescendo and then a somewhat sarcastic Hellboy kicks butt. In Hellboy Volume 6: Strange Places, the first story, The Third Wish, is based on Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid. Hellboy travels to Africa and after listening to stories of a tribesman, hears voices summoning him to the ocean. Needless to say, the mermaids in this story would not win any auditions with Disney.

The second story, The Island, was inspired by the Sargasso Sea stories by William Hope Hodgson. According to the author notes at the beginning of the story, Mike Mignola started this story a couple of times but ran out of gas. He goes on to say he created Hellboy in 1993 and had been keeping a lot of his secrets, but then along comes the movie and up pops the Ogdru Jahad waggling their tentacles all over the big screen. He figured if we were going to see them, might as well not only see the real version but their origin in The Island.

This time at the end in addition to a peak inside his sketchbook is the first 8 pages of the first version of The Island. Quite different than the final story that was published in 2005.

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