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B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth #143 Review

B.P.R.D. fans and those who like to wait for the ending to really dig in take notice, as the finale starts with this issue. Is it good?

B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth #143 (Dark Horse Comics)

So what’s it about? The official Dark Horse synopsis reads:

Kate and Panya argue over abandoning BPRD headquarters, while in New York City Johann and Liz fight a seemingly unstoppable opponent as the Ogdru Jahad spawns dozens more monsters by the hour.

Why does this book matter?

Hell has literally taken over Earth and that’s not something you see every day. It also involves a ton of monsters, weird paranormal defense heroes, and plenty of hellfire. What’s not to love?

Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?

Scary bugger.

I haven’t read the entire B.P.R.D. series, but I was still able to hop on board this issue and enjoy the heck out of it. This issue does a good job establishing who the characters are, their fears, and the stakes they face. It opens with nuclear bombs being let loose and ends with winged devils aflutter. All the stuff in between keeps the tension high, monsters coming a mile a minute, and most importantly characters who face odds that are impossible.

Mike Mignola and John Arcudi have created a well written comic as it’s paced extremely well, has plenty of cinematic moments, and digs deep into Kate’s psyche as the end of the world seems imminent. Meanwhile out in the wilderness Iosif and a strange little blonde girl wander as if in a fairy tale. Which is possibly why I enjoyed this story so much–it has the atmospheric nature of a fairy tale or myth, which heightens the weight of the story, and makes the gravity of each situation feel important.

The art by Laurence Campbell is as solid as they come too. Faces are animated and draw you in, while the monsters are gargantuan and eerily without fine detail. Bones, snakes, and demons drop in from time to time and they look great. The woods around Iosif are particularly creepy with thorns seemingly everywhere which enhances the feel of dread and threat. The flames and rumble are quite mesmerizing too. Overall, the art does a great job establishing the end of days and the fact that Earth is nothing like it was, which makes you ask, why should we even bother saving it?

It can’t be perfect can it?

Having not read the entire mythos I wasn’t sure how some of these characters related to each other. That’s on me to some extent, but it was perplexing when the story cut to a beautiful field of green grass and I wasn’t sure where we were or why the characters mattered.

I mean…I can’t even see my house!

Is It Good?

This is a striking first issue as the end of days is nigh. In one fell swoop you’ll understand the stakes, the characters’ psychology, and you will be pulled in. If you don’t highly anticipate the next issue I’m not sure you read this right!


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