Overview

BPRD - Hell on Earth: Monsters #1

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BPRD - Hell on Earth: Monsters #1

Credits

  • Words: Mike Mignola and John Arcudi
  • Art: Tyler Crook
  • Colors: Dave Stewart
  • Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
  • Price: $3.50
  • Release Date: Jul 13, 2011

Living incognito in a trailer park, Liz Sherman discovers that she can’t outrun the weirdness of her life.

When we last saw Agent Elizabeth Sherman of the BPRD, she had just unleashed a massive blast of pyrokinesis that destroyed the frog-man army, caused massive volcanic eruptions, and may have fundamentally altered the world. As more monsters and disasters appear on the news, a guilt-stricken Liz has taken to hiding in a trailer park in the middle of nowhere. Her government training allows her to handle the more obnoxious rednecks and trailer trash. But when she’s called in to break up a domestic dispute, Liz uncovers a brand of horror she thought she had left behind her.

With BPRD – Hell on Earth: Monsters (yeesh, these new titles are a mouthful), Mike Mignola and John Arcudi continue to explore the ramifications the previous series’ apocalyptic events. Monsters run loose, landscapes have changed, people are getting crazier (the calm but clearly unhinged preacher interviewed on TV is a nice touch this issue), and a gigantic squid-like elder god sits on the remains of an American town. Amid all this madness, this story of trailer park life seems surprisingly low-key. It’s telling that Liz would seek out something simple and ordinary after everything she’s experienced. The denizens of Sugar Hill Park provide some humorous (if slightly stereotyped) moments and the story remains engaging throughout. But it’s the horrific sucker punch of an ending that will leave readers anxious to see what happens next. Mignola and Arcudi have always exceled at these kinds of moments, drawing us in with humor and characterization before unveiling their latest brand of weirdness.

This issue marks the debut of new series artist, Tyler Crook, who replaces the departing Guy Davis. Crook has big shoes to fill but he makes a strong show of it here. His art is slightly more realistic than BPRD fans may be accustomed to, but it possesses assured line-work and a nice amount of cartoonist stylization. His use of expressive faces and varied “camera” angles are impressive and really add to the drama of the story. The characters’ dot-like eyes in far shots may take some getting used to for some fans, but Crook is a clear talent. While Davis’ work will definitely be missed and the book may take on a different tone, Crook seems like a worthy successor.

This is a solid debut for the new-look BPRD with a twist ending that will leave the book’s fans craving more.

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