Review: Hellboy And The B.P.R.D.: The Secret Of Chesbro House #1 (of 2)
Hellboy returns in Hellboy And The B.P.R.D.: The Secret Of Chesbro House #1, the start of a 2-issue mini-series as he is brought into the Chesbro house to take on the supernatural aspects of it. The Chesbro house in itself is a place of mystery and lore, with stories of sex rituals, disappearances, and secret rooms that no one can find. The heirs would like to sell it but it must be rid of the evil presence. Once they make contact with the dead spirits do they truly get a sense of what evil resides within the walls of the Chesbro house.
I think one of the great things about a character like Hellboy is that you can place him in a story like this, one that’s not necessarily that original, and just by what he is and what the B.P.R.D. are about and it truly elevates the storytelling to another level. We’ve all read or heard stories of haunted houses and even the basics of the Chesbro house aren’t original. The teens who want to have nothing to do with it or the creepy caretaker who runs the place but Mignola and Golden, just by having their own supernatural avenger, make the story feel really fresh and exciting. It did feel just a hair too long to get to the exciting and then that felt a bit short-lived but Hellboy And The B.P.R.D.: The Secret Of Chesbro House #1 already feels like another great Hellboy story.
There’s not a bad panel in this entire issue. Shawn McManus, Dave Stewart, and Clem Robins unleash a spectacular-looking issue. McManus’s style is so clean and stylish with the right amount of detail added, his art pops in this issue. Illustrating a haunted house would lead to some difficulties for some and the amount of detail thrown into The Secret Of Chesbro House might have slowed some. There are full backgrounds throughout the issue and I think many a reader will appreciate that extra bit of detail thrown in. There’s nothing bad you could probably ever say about Dave Stewart’s colors and I couldn’t imagine too many people doing a better job with the material. Clem Robins is at the top of her game on an issue like this, as I can’t imagine trying to put words on this level of art an easy task.
Part one of Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.’s adventures with a haunted house might seem like a bit of overkill for the characters involved but with great storytelling and art that matches the quality, readers should get a lot of enjoyment out of this story. I’ve been a Hellboy/B.P.R.D. fan for many years and I’m always appreciative of the fact that Mignola and company continue to craft such interesting tales with Hellboy. The Secret of Chesbro House is yet another quality adventure in the Mignolaverse.
Story: Mike Mignola with Christopher Golden Art: Shawn McManus
Colors: Dave Stewart Letters: Clem Robins
Story: 8.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation: Buy
Dark Horse provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review