Mike Mignola is a god and I am a worshipper at his chunky-lined and strangely textured altar. Slight hyperbole, sure, but I can say that he’s easily one of my favorite artists and creators working today. His blend of action, dark cluttered landscapes, and decades of quality work on Hellboy have made him, his dialogue and his humor almost as recognizable as his art style.
If you’re a fan, and you want to see his artwork, layouts, and his fantastic sense of humor, then The Amazing Screw-On Head and Other Curious Objects Artist Edition is a very long winded title for a very good book. Let’s begin.
The Amazing Screw-On Head and other Curious Objects: Artist’s Edition (IDW)
Jesus, look at all that black ink. Is Mignola the reason that printer ink is so expensive?
With Screw-On Head, Mike gets to take a step away from his usual Hellboy fare (although Big Red does make his appearance in this book) and tell a tale that has no continuity or reason, and is just fun. The main story, is about a robot with, you guessed it, a screw on head, his butler Mr. Groin, and his boss, Abraham Lincoln.
“I need Lincoln riding my screw on ass like he needs a hole in his head!”
This is much funnier stuff than we usually see from Mike, as Hellboy has a certain weight of years of backstory and gravitas that is pretty inescapable. He’s going to destroy the world after all, so it’s kind of hard to have the “X-Men basketball” issue all that often.
I think Screw-On might be a Trump supporter. WE’RE GOING TO BUILD A TRANSDIMENSIONAL WALL AND MAKE CHTULHU PAY FOR IT!
Mike’s artwork is worth the price of admission alone. I’ve seen some of his black and white work, but this is raw, showing his depth with black coloring, and all the little lines of texture that truly makes his artwork stand out.
His humor, as I mentioned above, is front and center here. Watch the exchange when our bad guys are faced with a giant interdimensional being here to destroy the world:
*They see the interdimensional fiend*
*and one nopes the hell on out of there*
My favorite tale, was the one co-scripted by his daughter Katie (age 7), which is a simple window into a kid’s mind – showing love and death and magic, along with a Monkey King. All items that truly tell a great story.
Is It Good?
It is, but it’s not for everyone. This is a Mignola fan’s pick up, with artwork, splash pages, and a few easter eggs like a Rocketeer cover, and a fantastic image of H.P. Lovecraft.
If you’re not a fan of Mignola, I don’t know that this is the entry point for you. The man writes like most of us breathe, so there’s plenty out there to choose from. This is more for the collector, the ruminator, the Hellboy fan who wants to branch out and see what else the mind that made the B.P.R.D. can do.