BEASTS OF BURDEN HELLBOY ONE SHOT
What did the
Artist: Jill Thompson
Cover Artist: Jill Thompson
Size: 32 pages
Alright I gotta admit, I sorta skipped this one-shot when it originally came out. No offense to Evan Dorkin but the idea of crossing over to this bizarre team of cats and dogs didn’t intrigue me so much. But with a very light week in my hands, I felt that maybe it was time to give this another shot. I mean how often is it that Hellboy can kick some ass with a Pug by his side?
The ‘Beasts of Burden’ is a strange concept in my eyes, even in this world of comics. The idea of talking cats and dogs fighting (or solving? It’s never really made clear here) demons is a bit weird. But Dorkin (with a little help from Mignola) makes it really entertaining and somewhat believable. Now this isn’t some type of ‘All Dogs Go to Heaven’ talking animals; there is a lot of violence and swearing going on. When Hellboy gets involved with the group, it is a bit odd to read. Dorkin has a strange voice for Hellboy and it seems to much ‘Mignola-lite’ to feel like an original take on the character. Plus the demon that gets involved here seems to have some sort of connection with the Beasts but since I’m a new reader to them I have no idea who they’re talking about. But there is some sort of weird charm to it all and it never really bored me from first to last page.
Now Jill Thompson. Where have you been all my life? Just a wonderful, painted look to this entire comic. It’s almost like looking at a real painting in almost every panel. Whether it’s a quie moment with Hellboy and the Beasts or Hellboy fighting a huge demon, it all looks amazing. There’s a moment where they’re all fighting dirt monsters and it really looks like dirt. When they got knocked around it really looks like dirt is flying in all directions. Plus the colors are really great here. Bright reds, oranges, and even darker colors like brown all stand out. If anything this is a visual tour de force from beginning to end.
If the goal of this team up was to get people interested in ‘Beasts of Burden’ then I say ‘Slightly Mission Accomplished’ Dark Horse. Although this wasn’t the strongest of Hellboy one-shots, it certainly makes the case for me to try out the cuddly little animals of death. I would love to see more of Jill Thompson’s artwork in the future if anything else, especially if she can do another Hellboy one-shot.
Art: 5 - Excellent