Richard Corben draws scary stuff. I mean, that's kind of his deal -- his work with Mike Mignola on Hellboy has produced some of the most genuinely frightening imagery in that series, including the Crooked Man, my pick for the most unsettling villain that Hellboy has ever fought. So with that said, it should come as no surprise that his new book, Rat God, is stocked up with some of the creepiest stuff I've ever seen.
With the exception of perhaps Marvel, Dark Horse Comics may have been the publisher that broke the most news about its upcoming books at New York Comic-Con this year. That includes new stories from Eric Powell and Sergio Aragonés, the latest adventures from the Eisner-winning Itty Bitty team, prestige collections of Kabuki and Pistolwhip, brand new horror tales from some of the masters of the form, and much more.
We make a regular practice at ComicsAlliance of spotlighting particular artists or specific bodies of work, as well as the special qualities of comic book storytelling, but because cartoonists, illustrators and their fans share countless numbers of great pinups, fan art and other illustrations on sites like Flickr, Tumblr, DeviantArt and seemingly infinite art blogs that we’ve created Best Art Ever (This Week), a weekly depository for just some of the pieces of especially compelling artwork that we come across in our regular travels across the Web. Some of it’s new, some of it’s old, some of it’s created by working professionals, some of it’s created by future stars, some of it’s created by talented fans, awnd some of it’s endearingly silly. All of it is awesome.
On March 22, 2014, comics fans across the world celebrated Hellboy Day, a special day commemorating the release of the first issue of Seed of Destruction, the first Hellboy mini-series from Dark Horse Comics, twenty years ago in 1994. In those twenty years, creator Mike Mignola, together with a number of talented collaborators, has expanded his most famous character into one of the coolest and most satisfying franchises in comics, with stories branching out into such spin-off series as BPRD (aka the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense), Lobster Johnson, Abe Sapien, and Sledgehammer '44.
Although I am sure Mignola has many more years' worth of stories about Hellboy and his compatriots left in him, now seems as good a time as any to look back at what has come before. While this list is by no means exhaustive — a complete list of awesome Hellboy moments would easily be one hundred times this length; sorry if yours got left off, pancakes fans — here are ten moments that I believe are emblematic of what makes Hellboy one of the most enduringly excellent and exciting books on the shelf.
While Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is in the midst of a creative renaissance at IDW, with the current series making our own Best Comics of 2013 list, the publisher continues to release reprints and collections of stories that had been unavailable for years. Recently, IDW released a new hardcover edition of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: 25th Anniversary Collection, which was originally published in 2009 (the actual 25th anniversary) through co-creator Kevin Eastman’s Heavy Metal publishing house, re-mastering the artwork and providing some stories with color for the first time.
Unlike ComicsAlliance editor Caleb Goellner -- who seems to bleed green -- I’ve only read a few issues of the new series. I really, genuinely liked it, but felt like my memories of the original comics, if not the comics themselves, were better. For that same reason, I haven’t bought a single issue of IDW’s Classics reprints; just saw enough of the first collection to know that I didn't like the cold digital coloring. Really, I didn’t want to see TMNT with new eyes; I wanted it to remain great in my recollection, rather than diminished by the reality. I didn’t want to find out that literally the most important comic in my life was reduced to trash because of the passage of time and changes in perception.
Curiosity got the better of me.
The publisher of Hellboy, Creepy Comics, Eerie Comics, To Hell You Ride, Criminal Macabre and more, Dark Horse Comics has always distinguished itself as a comic book company with a serious love for horror. Indeed, the publisher's haunting Ragemoor by Jan Strnad and Richard Corben earned a place on ComicsAlliance's list of the best comics of 2012, as did the year's particularly grim installments of B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth, and the cover artwork of Colder #1 was very arguably the most startlingly horrific image to grace comic book stands (or iPads, as the case may be).
We didn't realize when we set out to list our favorite comic books of 2012 that it had been such a fun year to be a fan of the medium that we all love so much. The last twelve months offered readers a wide variety of work ranging from the most crowd-pleasing superhero epics to the most idiosyncratic of indies; the return of much missed mangaka and the emergence of exciting new talent; a new crowd-sponsored visibility for self-publishing; and the ascension of the fan artist from bedroom dreamer to Tumblr tycoon...
With an expansive line that includes Mike Mignola's supernatural epic Hellboy, Eric Powell's zombie-slugging The Goon, Joss Whedon's Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Steve Niles' occult investigating Criminal Macabre, the new Eerie, the archives of Creepy, and new series like Tim Seeley's Ex Sanguine, Guillermo del Toro's The Strain, Lance Henriksen & Tom Mandrake's To Hell You Ride, and Paul Tobin & Juan Ferreyra's Colder, Dark Horse has a lot to offer for this year's Halloween celebration.
This year's winner of the Eisner award for Best Anthology, Dark Horse Presents has been one of ComicsAlliance's favorite titles since it was relaunched in 2011 to continue the classic and influential series' tradition of showcasing emerging talent alongside some of the greatest writers, artists and cartoonists mainstream and underground comics has to offer...