Itty Bitty Hellboy #3: Review

Screen shot 2013-10-28 at 9.33.18 PM

Who says you can’t set a children’s comic book in hell? Certainly not  Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani! Itty Bitty Hellboy #3 offers two things you might not have expected from this highly regarded team: a kid-friendly re-imagining of Hades, and a plot that actually makes sense.

Here’s the official word from Dark Horse:

It had to happen! Because you demanded it! Hellboy and the gang go to the fiery pits of HELL! How did they get there anyway? ALSO, our B.P.R.D. heroes’ search for Sasquatch continues! But what does Rasputin have to do with all this? OOOOH! Is he just trying to scare us? You WILL find out in this exciting issue!!!

If you’ve followed Art Baltazar and Franco Aureliani’s work over the last few years, then you’ve come to expect Screen shot 2013-10-28 at 9.31.59 PMnothing less than inane (although certainly delightful) plots. Loose ends don’t always get tied up, character motivations are so paper thin you’d think Art and Franco might have once written for adult films, and there’s a lot (a lot) of random screaming. But…it’s all forgivable. Why? Because Art and Franco’s approach is clearly done on purpose, and clearly part of a larger effort to re-imagine some of the genre’s most serious characters by reminding us of comic’s campy roots. And we love this creative team as a result.

All that said, Itty Bitty Hellboy #3 is surprisingly mainstream — which is to say, it has a plot that ties the first page to the last. Given that Art and Franco decided it was time to send Hellboy to, well, Hell, it made sense that they’d approach this issue with a bit more intentionality. The result is a fun jaunt to Hades, done in a careful and un-terrifying ways (read: this issue is suitable for children). Issue #3 is also stuffed with gorgeous art, clever references to the standard B.P.R.D universe, and tons of inside jokes.

Itty Bitty Hellboy #3 offers another delightful installment of this five part run. Go pick it up today.



S#!T Talking Central