As a long-time Mike Mignola fan (worshipper), I’m lucky enough to have been around when Hellboy was first introduced via Dark Horse comics. I picked up Seed of Destruction #1, and I’ve never looked back. I’ve read every short story, graphic novel, prose novel, mini-series, spin-off series, cross over, and basically just about everything else I could get my hands on based on Mignola’s “big red ape”. To put it in summation, I’m a Hellboy fan. It’s been a while since Mike has stepped outside of that universe, understandably so, there’s a ton of story to tell, with so many wonderful characters who aren’t Hellboy, let alone Hellboy himself. Mignola truly has crafted himself a unique sandbox in which to play.
This week, Mignola releases yet another piece of the puzzle introducing us to his version of the Frankenstein Monster in Frankenstein Underground. From what I’ve read about the series, it looks like it will focus on the Monster as he wanders around alone, post-the death of Dr. Frankenstein. While this concept isn’t particularly new (Steven Niles recent Monster & Madman and Frankenstein Alive, Alive come to mind), I’m definitely interested in Mignola’s take on it. His is an obsession with monsters that seems almost unrivaled, and at the same time is combined with a near-genius intellect. This guy writes and draws monster comics that are so good, they almost ruin other monster and horror comics, no matter how good they may be.
Joining Mr. Mignola on Frankenstein Underground is a long-time collaborator of the Mignolaverse, Ben Stenbeck. Here’s the thing about Mike Mignola, he’s a perfectionist, plain and simple. When he chooses a collaborator to work on one of his books, he doesn’t just take the first guy that comes along, his books all have a signature tone and feel to them, and he makes sure his artists are capable of producing work that is immediately recognizable as a Mignola comic. That said, Ben Stenbeck is one of the best of the bunch. His best work has been in the Baltimore series, which chronicles the story of Lord Henry Baltimore as he tirelessly hunts the vampire Haigus, who is responsible for the death of his family. I can’t say enough good things about Stenbeck. You’ve not seen demon possessed nuns until you’ve seen the ones he drew in the Baltiimore mini-series The Curse Bells. It’s quite literally jaw-dropping.
The solicit for Frankenstein Underground from the Dark Horse Comics website:
The Frankenstein creature is alone, abandoned, and wandering underground, where he will discover other strange creatures-and dark secrets to the universe.
There are some other notables this week, including a new series from Vertigo titled Strange Sports Stories which looks like a lot of fun, we FINALLY get a new issue of Robert Kirkman’s newest hit Outcast, and a new series from IDW titled Fly: Outbreak based on Cronenberg’s 1986 film The Fly, which also happens to have a gorgeous variant cover done by none other than Jason Edmiston, whom I’m assuming if you’re reading this, you’re already more than familiar.
Also Out This Week: