B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth (vol 1): New World by Mike Mignola and othersB.P.R.D. Hell on Earth (Vol. 1): New World by Mike Mignola (writer), John Arcudi (writer), Guy Davis (artist), Dave Stewart (colorist), and Clem Robins (letterer).

This volume jumps back and forth between Abe out in the field and what is going on at the B.P.R.D. base back in Colorado. At the base, Kate is trying to manage all the teams in the field, Johann is still obsessed with the possibility of getting another body so he can feel physical sensations again, and Devon is assigned his own mission in France. Meanwhile, come-to-life mummy Panya seems to be manipulating creatures on the base for her own secret purposes.

Out in the field, Abe tracks down an old friend and fellow-agent who went missing in previous B.P.R.D. volumes. The two of them work together to figure out what mysterious creature is haunting the woods and what connection it might have to the large number of disappearances in a nearby small town. At the center of the mystery is some murky water, and only Abe is able to explore it given his amphibious nature.

I like the way this volume keeps highlighting the creatures and disruptions that are showing up and happening all over the world: Not only does Kate keep watch from the base by observing multiple monitor screens, high-lighting for the readers the world crisis that is coming and the B.P.R.D.’s role in trying to solve the crisis, but also minor characters in homes and diners across the U.S. keep mentioning it, considering where they could move to in order to most likely avoid the disturbances. The frogs and their nests seem to have been replaced by giant monsters, and as a result, we continue to see the spreading of an end-of-the-world scenario, and even preachers are shown speaking on TV about the end times and who, or what, is responsible for it.

The B.P.R.D. personnel are stretched thin, and even Kate is called away into the field, leaving Johann in charge. I love all the directions that this volume goes in, particularly the story of Abe and his partner fighting against monsters. The story behind the monster they have to fight is an interesting one, and it takes us slightly outside the main storyline for what is essentially a standalone story in the midst of the larger tale of the emerging monster threat in the Hellboy universe. It also gives one possible answer to the question: Where are the large monsters spotted in various cities coming from? This volume is another five-star installment in the continuing tales of the B.P.R.D. and moves us forward, closer to the end of the series (which includes nine volumes of Abe Sapien, fourteen more volumes of B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth, and, to wrap things up, the three volumes of B.P.R.D. The Devil You Know).


  • Brad Hawley

    BRAD HAWLEY, who's been with us since April 2012, earned his PhD in English from the University of Oregon with areas of specialty in the ethics of literature and rhetoric. Since 1993, he has taught courses on The Beat Generation, 20th-Century Poetry, 20th-Century British Novel, Introduction to Literature, Shakespeare, and Public Speaking, as well as various survey courses in British, American, and World Literature. He currently teaches Crime Fiction, Comics, and academic writing at Oxford College of Emory University where his wife, Dr. Adriane Ivey, also teaches English. They live with their two young children outside of Atlanta, Georgia.