Review: Hellboy and the B.P.R.D. 1953: Beyond the Fences #3

The last issue in Beyond The Fences wraps things up nicely. Hellboy gets to beat up the mutant giant dog, the town gets wrecked, and some new villains are introduced. Mignola can’t ever seem to just let things lie, and we are left wanting more, as always.

After a brutal, and well-drawn battle with the dog mutant, the quiet California town slowly resumes normalcy. Hellboy and the other BPRD agents take samples, and try to clean things up a bit before leaving for their next mission. Agent Xiang has another vision, this time of things that presumably have not yet come to pass. Whatever mutated the dog has something to do with the stone chemical called enkeladite. Its presence affects Xiang and causes her visions. As Hellboy and crew prepare to leave, we cut to a woman entering a hotel room. Turns out she is a Russian agent who Hellboy-and-the-B.P.R.D-1953-#3was trying to obtain the enkeladite for herself, but failed. She is greeted by the man who we can assume killed Dr. Boucq earlier in the arc. Loose ends are wrapped up, but in classic Mignola fashion, many more questions have arisen.

Seeing Hellboy in the 50s has been a fun ride. Mignola and his collaborators get to play off of their favorite pulp influences and tropes, and it shows. This miniseries definitely brings a little bit of color to a sometimes dark comic. Hellboy is yet to be weighed down by all of the tragedies that befall him, and these early cases don’t hold as much consequence. Like I said last month, without all of the baggage from the past series, the writers are granted a little bit more freedom.

Mingola loves to tie everything together, so we get some flashbacks to past Hellboy events. It’s cool, though, because the web of events, characters, and places that make up the Mignola-verse are super fun to map out. It’s crazy to find out that Edward Gray is somehow connected to Abe Sapien. Hellboy thrives in the tiny details, the small minutiae that make up a great fictional mythology. But it’s a series that also loves the big picture, and isn’t afraid to inject some action when it's needed. Creepy, action packed, and fun: Beyond The Fences #3 concludes a great addition to the Hellboy canon.

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Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: Beyond the Fences #3 Writers: Mike Mignola, Chris Roberson Artist: Paolo Rivera Publisher: Dark Horse Comics Price: $3.50 Release Date: 04/27/16 Format: Mini-Series; Print/Digital