Hellboy, Vol. 8: Darkness Calls
ISBN: 9781593078966

Made into a movie, “Hellboy II: The Golden Army”.

The plot, as I remember it: a bunch of witches want to make Hellboy their King. He tells them to ‘Screw it’. They opt to elect another. Hellboy is somehow abducted to another realm (part of a deal to prevent him from stopping the witches’ plan). Hellboy is pursued by his nemesis, Baba Yaga, who sends her henchman (who cannot die unless his hidden soul is destroyed). Hellboy makes it back but the story is only beginning, it seems. For ‘she’ has been released. Just who this Queen of witches is, the mystery just adds to the suspense.

Introduction by Jane Yolen sums up the uniqueness of this particular storyline; there’s a weave of “historical reality” (i.e. the Salem Witch trials), folklore, theology, “Celtic miasma”, Ragnarok, Russian demonology (Baba Yaga? Rasputin, Koshchei The Deathless, Vasilisa, russian house spirit) and “the cosmic End of the World scenarios from many cultures”.

And Jane Yolen being Jane Yolen, she sums up beautifully: “It is a deeply human story for all its monsters”.

Art by Duncan Fegredo, who has his own style but overall still sticks to the familiar and signature Mignola’s line and shadow work.