Graphic Novel Review 156/365: Hellboy: Weird Tales Vol. 1

Please keep up with all of my old Graphic Novel Reviews here as I quest for 365 in 365 days! Or search #GN365 on Twitter.

No specific theme this week…just some cool books that you should know about!

Title: Hellboy: Weird Tales Vol. 1

Author(s): Various

Publisher: Dark Horse (2003)

Age Rating: 13+

In the early 90’s, Mike Mignola created Hellboy, and he’s been a hit ever since.

It’s no wonder.  There is a lot to like about this weird hero: he’s part demon; he journeys into the occult; he’s surly; he plays with giant guns…I could go on.  For folks that like their heroes a little on the darker side, Hellboy is a sure hit.

I fell in love with his apathy in the face of great evil.  Hellboy does what he needs to do, most of the time without an ounce of excitement.  And it’s bad-ass!  Not only is he completely nonchalant and apathetic about his hero-ness, but he whoops most baddies without even breaking a sweat.  And if he does get smashed up, he dusts himself off and goes headfirst right back into the fire.  You gotta love that!  He is most of us.  We fight; we get beaten down; we dust ourselves off and get the hell back out there.  And if that’s not you, I bet you want it to be.  He represents hope and determination in this terrible, relentless world.  But because he’s part demon, he also represents the parts of us that could devolve at any moment…but choosing not to let them.

Weird Tales Volume One is a collection of thirteen different Hellboy inspired stories all crafted by different writers and artists, giving the reader a broad take on the iconic character.  Some creepy, some funny, these stories compile an interesting look at Hellboy for newbies to the character or fans from the start.  This is one cool book.

If you feel beat down day after day by the terrible news that keeps spewing from our government and our world, maybe you need to read some Hellboy.  Unfortunately, he’s not real; his Nazi-fighting experience would sure come in handy, but his spirit is very real.  Mignola has created an everyman demon that we can look to for inspiration in a monster-infected world.

Fight back.  Stay strong.  Saw down your horns.  The fight is long…

Happy reading!

Eric

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