Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Writer: Mike Mignolia
Artist: Ben Stenbeck
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Release Date: 3rd January 2018
As the title suggests, this is the tale of Koschei, an immortal adversary of your favourite big red demon. Opening in a bar somewhere in Hell, Koschei recounts an earlier meeting with Hellboy whilst under servitude to Baba Yaga. With nothing but a lot of time on their hands, Hellboy asks for the low down on the pale one’s past.
From the outset, this is exactly what you would expect from Stenbeck and Mignolia. It’s dark, atmospheric, and weird in all the right ways. The muted, almost dull dreariness of Hell is wonderful and offset in fine form by the striking battles and bold wonder of the Dragon’s court. It’s difficult to say anything novel about the style, suffice to say, if it’s your bag, you’ll love it.
Mignolia draws on eastern folklore once more to delve into the background of this strange character and weaves a twisted tale of rage, revenge, and potential redemption. From humble beginnings as a common soldier to the deathless servant of Dragons and Baba Yaga, we find the truth behind the warrior with the soul bound in an egg, in a duck, in a rabbit, in a goat, in a tree, hidden on an island at the edge of the world.
I have to admit that I’m not overly well versed in Hellboy lore but I found this a very entertaining read. As a standalone dark folk tale it hits all the right notes. So if you find yourself in Hell with some time to kill, why not pull up a chair and listen in; I know I’m going to.
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The writer of this piece was: Adam Brown
Adam Tweets from @brother_rooster