B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth #127

bprd-hell-on-earth-127

B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth #127

Writers: Mike Mignola and John Arcudi
Artist: James Harren
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Letterer: Clem Robins
Cover Artist: Laurence Campbell

B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth #127 can be a confusing issue to dive into for someone who hasn’t been reading the series, but it’s also an intriguing piece of storytelling. In a wintery setting, a B.P.R.D. group is holding up in some rundown, abandoned town. They’re waiting for a search team to come back from a mission. What arrives surprises them.

Visually, the issue does a good job capturing readers from the get go. It being winter time right now, the cold imagery of snow and being able to see your breath outside hits home. But beyond that, there’s a Sergio Leone feel to the issue. The town is reminiscent to an old west town complete with it’s main street and two riders coming in on horseback. The panels utilize closeups and showcase the scenery, just like a Sergio Leone western. The artwork also plucks at the threads of mystery. Riding into town is a shirtless man covered in pitch with a sword on his back and goggles on his eyes. As a lover of westerns, I was completely ensnared at this point.

As the mysterious search party arrives, the story shifts to flashbacks as we find out what happened. There’s a glimpse of some strange fire creature chasing them. There’s their struggle for survival and food. Then Howards covers himself in ash. It’s not revealed why, at least not yet. Plunging further along, there’s another flashback, this time to a time long before. Keep in mind, I’m not familiar with the characters or the story as I’m jumping in blind to this issue, but it’s inferred that Howards what some kind of nomadic hunter-gatherer either in a previous life or just long ago. Either way, the comic shows a time where he and his tribe were out hunting and came across a disturbance. They did battle with a voodoo doctor of sorts and battled a massive beast. Howards was there, and he survived.

Flashing back to the present, he finds something from his dream or vision or forgotten memory. He finds one of the marked stones the Spirit Father made for him.

Again, jumping in like so, there are a lot of unanswered questions and mysteries, but this issue makes you want to find out more. The artwork is nice and draws you into the mystery of the characters. I especially liked the design of the little voodoo guy in the vision. It’s also worth noting that a lot of the panel don’t have any words, instead the story relies completely on visual storytelling, and it works well. All in all, I give this issue a five out of five metal bikinis. It’s an odd way to start, but I’m looking forward to seeing where this story goes.

Reviewed By: Skuldren for Roqoo Depot.

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