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5 Mike Mignola Heroes You Should Meet After Hellboy
The Wednesday ClubThe Wednesday Club

5 Mike Mignola Heroes You Should Meet After Hellboy

The Wednesday Club is Geek & Sundry’s weekly talk show chatting about all things comics, hosted by Taliesin Jaffe, Amy Dallen, and Matt Key. This week, they’ll be talking about Hellboy, from his first appearance to his last, with special guest, Liam O’Brien.

There are a number of sprawling universes in comics, but few come from a singular creative division like the one cartoonist Mike Mignola has woven throughout decades of occult superheroics. Odds are, you’ve already met the man’s signature creation, Hellboy: that beer-drinking, cigar-chomping demon who protects mankind with the covert unit that raised him. However, as epic as the Hellboy movies have seemed, they’ve only scratched the surface when it comes to the do-gooding devil’s creature comrades in the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense.


Peruse this list and learn about Abe Sapien’s solo adventures, as well as those of other asskickers in the Hellboy universe, and get ready for some reading. We’ve even thrown in some bonus recommendations which include Mignola’s own spiritual spin-offs and preludes.

Abe Sapien

As promised, there are at least nine volumes of all-Abe action. The series sees the sensitive sea-dweller go off on his own against a gauntlet of occult threats, accumulating a wide enough rogues gallery to rival Hellboy’s, really. And it’s not just Mr. Sapien versus various warlocks, zombies, and secessionist militias, either. The series pits him against his own body, and the bureau he’s served so valiantly, as unexpected mutations in Abe’s scaly flesh coincide with the even-more-unexpected twist of him becoming a fugitive hunted by the BPRD.

Lobster Johnson

The Hellboy series has always drawn much inspiration from the era of pulp vigilantes predating Superman’s debut, and that association gets far more literal, and meta, with the adventures of the Lobster. The crime fighter operated in secret throughout the 30s–so secretly, even Hellboy at first believes him to only be a fictional pulp and serial character. After perishing in combat against Nazis in Austria, the Lobster’s spirit eventually breaks down both the fourth wall and any barrier to the after life, returning to aide Hellboy in battle against Rasputin. These books, though, chronicle the crimefighter’s exploits as a living, breathing spy-smasher in the 30s.

B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth

Pretty much every other oddity-at-work in the bureau gets a chance to show off in this title, from the pyrokinetic Liz Sherman to the occult expert Kate Corrigan. However, it’s the disembodied and ever-so-ectoplasmic Johann Kraus who gets the biggest spotlight here, battling giant kaiju and scouring the dense Northwest woods for a reckoning with the very man who left him bodiless. He and the rest of BPRD may face the most vexing challenge, though, in their mysterious Russian counterparts, who resurface not long after fractured divisions in the bureau’s ranks form.

The Amazing Screw-On Head

While this head-spinning hero doesn’t technically exist in Hellboy’s world, he may as well. True to his name, the titular U.S. agent is a robot who can be attached to various task-specific bodies. He defends Abe Lincoln’s interests from the fiendish Emperor Zombie. An animated adaptation aired on the Sci-Fi channel, and it actually starred one future Abe Sapien, David Hyde Pierce, as the Head’s imperial foe.

Batman: Gotham by Gaslight


Bruce Wayne is a student of Sigmund Freud, and Batman hunts Jack the Ripper in Victorian-era Gotham City? Yes, it happened. Notable for being the first entry in a line of alternate universe stories often transplanting DC characters into other eras, this Mignola-drawn Batman story is also something of a prelude to Hellboy; what with its mash-up of superheroes, horror and real historical figures.

Tune in to Wednesday Club starting every Wednesday starting at 7 PM PT on Twitch and Alpha!

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Featured Image Credit: Dark Horse, Mike Mignola

Image Credits: Dark Horse, Mike Mignola, DC Comics

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