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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ah, girl, what did you do?, 16 Jun 2010
By 
E. A Solinas "ea_solinas" (MD USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Hellboy Volume 10: The Crooked Man and Others (Hellboy (Dark Horse Paperback)) (Paperback)
The last Hellboy collection had some pretty shocking revelations and events... so it's kind of a letdown to find out that "Hellboy Volume 10: The Crooked Man and Others" doesn't follow up on that. Instead, this collection is various smaller stories featuring the scarlet anti-hero -- a grimy Appalachian adventure, plus a handful of other little stories.

In the title story, Hellboy is called to Virginia to deal with a child who's been "witched." With the help of a mountain man named Tom, Hellboy finds the witch who cast the spell... and discovers that she's just a pawn for malevolent hags living deep within the mountain. And even worse, those grotesque witches are led by a monstrous creature called the Crooked Man -- and he wants Tom, body and soul.

Then there's the one-shots. "In the Chapel of Moloch" brings Hellboy to a Portuguese village, where an artist has been putting out some really grotesque works, courtesy of his studio's gruesome history. "The Mole" was a special for "Free Comic Book Day": Hellboy notices a weird purple spot on his hand, which gets bigger and bigger and... well, better read it.

And finally there's "They That Go Down To The Sea in Ships" (what else would they go down to the sea in?), a story from Hellboy's BPRD days. A small-time psychic/fortune-teller steals an old skull that once belonged to Blackbeard -- and now it's up to Abe, Hellboy and a historian to stop the cycle of death.

I felt a little let down when I found out that this collection of Hellboy stories wouldn't pick up the plot threads that the previous volume left dangling. But "Hellboy Volume 10: The Crooked Man and Others" is still a solid little collection of stories -- think leprous mountain witches, giant centipedes, zombie pirates, and a building filled with the evil of Moloch.

And though brief, Mike Mignola spins up some creepy supernatural one-offs, handled with Hellboy's typical matter-of-fact attitude ("I kinda wish I'd taken a shot at her back when she was sitting on that horse"). Even better, Mignola infuses a real sense of evil and menace into his stories, as well as a vaguely Lovecraftian vibe in "They That Go Down...", although "The Mole" is so quick that you barely have time to react to it.

And as usual, Mignola's art is awesome -- a little blocky, dark and rough, with lots of distorted faces and splashes of red. But Jason Shawn Alexander's art in "They That Go Down..." isn't quite up to Mignola's standard; it's decent, but not nearly as atmospheric.

As for Hellboy... he's Hellboy. Brash, rough, matter-of-fact and surprisingly soft-hearted towards ordinary humans caught up in weird events -- and it's fun to see him kung-fuing a giant stone statue of Moloch. And the character of Tom is an excellent one, a normal guy who stupidly got caught up in black magic as a kid and has been trying to live a good life ever since then.

"Hellboy Volume 10: The Crooked Man and Others" is a solid collection of odds and ends -- but they all center on Hellboy and his weird adventures. A nice addition to the collection.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Straight up awesomeness, 19 Jun 2010
By 
Sam Quixote - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Hellboy Volume 10: The Crooked Man and Others (Hellboy (Dark Horse Paperback)) (Paperback)
"The Crooked Man", despite being Vol 10 in the Hellboy series, isn't a continuation of the events of the previous book but rather a collection of shorts written by Mignola and illustrated by the best comics artists around. While I would've liked to see what happened after Vol 9, "The Crooked Man" more than makes up for it by providing story after story of high quality, brilliant storytelling and art.

"The Crooked Man" showcases Richard Corben's artwork as Mignola takes Hellboy into rural North America to fight mountain witches and the devil himself. The depiction of the devil, or "The Crooked Man", is truly amazing as are panel after panel of ruined churches, idyllic countryside, and horrifying creatures. If you're a Discworld fan and always wondered what Granny Weatherwax entering the body of an animal might look like, you get to see the graphic depiction here. It's the best story in the book and can easily see why it won an Eisner award in 2009.

Jason Shawn Alexander (the guy who drew "Abe Sapien: The Drowning") lends his talents to a tale of a headless pirate Blackbeard, while Mignola himself draws "In the Chapel of Moloch", a Goya-esque tale of demon worship. The fanciful strip "The Mole" rounds out this superb collection with the inimitable Duncan Fegredo drawing beautiful countryside vistas, a ghostly poker game, and a derelict house with equal skill.

Totally worth reading whether you're new to Hellboy or not, it's an amazing book and a fantastic contribution to one of the best comic series around.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1595824774/ref=cm_cr_rev_prod_title, 12 Aug 2010
This review is from: Hellboy Volume 10: The Crooked Man and Others (Hellboy (Dark Horse Paperback)) (Paperback)
Brilliant, just brilliant.

Of course the Hellboy collections are truly enjoyed only in numerical order but many can be enjoyed on their own. There is a continuing story in these collections, that of Hellboy's destiny, which with each collection takes a more imaginative turn.

For those hardcore fans who have already experienced volume 1 - 9, this is a must. With the revelation of Hellboy's identity and mission left up in the air in vol 9, this collection perpetuates the wait without much actually happening with the current Hellboy-to-destroy-the-world-theme, but nonetheless there are things in this issue which have to be read in order to understand Collection 11 and any others that follow.

So, all in all, this is a great read and some truly inpspired artwork.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Crooked Man, 21 Jan 2011
By 
A. Page (Norwich, Norfolk, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Hellboy Volume 10: The Crooked Man and Others (Hellboy (Dark Horse Paperback)) (Paperback)
I loved this book. I'm not the greatest fan of collecting short stories or one shots together in graphic novel form and find they can be rather disjointed affairs but every story in this book work for me. The artwork and storytelling was all superb and I can't fault any of hellboy's adventures. Great!
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5.0 out of 5 stars excellent writing great art, 7 Dec 2014
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This review is from: Hellboy Volume 10: The Crooked Man and Others (Hellboy (Dark Horse Paperback)) (Paperback)
Excellent story by Mike Mignola and great to see Richard Corben in fine form. I was genuinely scared by the crooked man maybe its just me but I thought it was a great story and excellent artwork.
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