Hellboy Box Full of Evil #1, 2 (of 2)
[Dark Horse $2.95 US $4.50 CAN]
Written & Illustrated by Mike Mignola
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Hellboy: Box Full of Evil #1Box Full of Evil is only a two issue series but it’s definitely full of startling revelations about Hellboy. The story begins with Hellboy and Abe Sapien investigating an odd robbery in Druggan Hill, England, at a house that used to be a convent. It turns out that some religious artifacts had been hidden behind one of the walls. The artifacts in question were a pair of tongs and a metal box, both said to have been used by Saint Dunstan to trap the devil. is only a two issue series but it’s definitely full of startling revelations about Hellboy. The story begins with Hellboy and Abe Sapien investigating an odd robbery in Druggan Hill, England, at a house that used to be a convent. It turns out that some religious artifacts had been hidden behind one of the walls. The artifacts in question were a pair of tongs and a metal box, both said to have been used by Saint Dunstan to trap the devil.

Hellboy and Abe must travel to Lockmaben, Scotland to retrieve the artifacts. I don’t want to spoil the ending of the story so let’s just say the events that follow reveal Hellboy’s true name and his demonic purpose on Earth.

Each issue also has a short back-up tale by Mignola. Issue one’s story is entitled "The Killer In My Skull" and introduces us to the pulp style hero, Lobster Johnson, who is embroiled in the mystery of the grisly murders of several research scientists. Mignola brings the same creepy sensibilities to this tale as he does to his Hellboy stories. After reading this story I’m ready for a Lobster Johnson mini-series.

Issue two’s back-up is entitled "Abe Sapien vs. Science" and brings us face to face with the Homunculus from Hellboy: Wake the Devil and Almost Colussus. What follows is a quiet little tale that gives us some insight into Abe Sapien’s background. Both the Homonculus and Lobster Johnson look to be pivotal characters in the next Hellboy mini The Conqueror Worm.

Mignola’s writing and illustration are solid in Box Full of Evil. Each time I finish a Mignola Hellboy story I can’t keep from thinking that this is the series he was born to do. The pulp horror milieu of Hellboy is perfectly suited to Mignola’s moody artwork and he obviously loves the research needed to come up with the stories. I cannot recommend the these minis highly enough.

This issue should still be on your local store’s shelves but if it’s not you can order direct from Dark Horse Comics, Inc. 10956 SE Main Street, Milwaukie, OR 97222 or visit their web site at www.darkhorse.com. You can also visit the official Hellboy site at www.hellboy.com.