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First look: Hellboy clashes with Mignolaverse monsters in 'The Return of Effie Kolb' finale

By Jeff Spry
hellboy hero

The Eisner Award winning horror tale, The Crooked Man, is one of Mike Mignola's most cherished Mignolaverse stories — and we have a first look at the big finale of his long-awaited follow-up.

Seeping out of the dark heart of the Appalachian woods of 1958, the twisted fable was loosely inspired by a 1842 children's nursery rhyme by James Orchard Halliwell. The beloved Hellboy adventure, accented by artist Richard Corben's haunting illustrations, was originally published as an unsettling three-issue miniseries by Dark Horse Comics back in 2008 and can be currently found in its entirety in Hellboy: The Complete Short Stories Volume 1.

Set in the foreboding Virginia mountains, the yarn centers around a crafty demon locally known as The Crooked Man. Hellboy encounters a cursed man named Tom Ferrell who's sold his immortal soul to the grim grinning entity, and together they hunt for the decrepit hideaway of the backwoods creature to try and reverse Tom's damnation.

Crooked man

A spirited two-part sequel, Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: The Return of Effie Kolb was first released back in February, penned by Mignola with artwork courtesy of Eisner Award nominated illustrator Zach Howard, esteemed colorist Dave Stewart, and letters by Clem Robbins.

Its atmospheric plot picks up nine years after Hellboy vanquished the hillbilly demon, as he treks back to Appalachia when a teenage psychic named Sara warns Tom Ferrell of more malevolent events to come in the vacant mansion.

Delayed due to the ongoing pandemic, Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: The Return of Effie Kolb Part 2 is the conclusion to this terrifying fable and arrives on Oct. 28 just in time to scare up some stifling pre-Halloween screams — and SYFY WIRE has an exclusive preview to haunt your autumn nights.

Effie Cover

Written by Mike Mignola and injected with more arresting artwork by Zach Howard and colored by the masterful Dave Stewart, the calamitous conclusion follows Hellboy's eerie encounter with the new residents of The Crooked Man's creepy home as a young spiritual sensitive still believes something incessantly evil is brewing in the macabre old Virginia mansion.

Hellboy slice 1

“In the first issue, we find young Sara and Hellboy departing an aged Tom to go see what darkness is afoot at the deceased Crooked Man’s mansion," Howard tells SYFY WIRE. "It is in far worse condition than when we last saw Corben draw it from the original story, and is now occupied by two strange new characters from NYC. Creepiness abounds; we find our heroes attempting to solve this mystery to start the second issue, and punch monsters in the teeth."  

hellboy slice 2

"Mike wrote a classic with these issues, and I gave 100 percent of myself to bring it to life," he adds. "To say it was an honor to stand in the shadows of Mignola and Corben, albeit intimidating, is a gross understatement. I tried very hard to take on this project with a goal of letting neither of those creators down, while hopefully giving the Hellboy fans something fun and substantial to chew on.”

hellboy slice 3

Now enter our exclusive six-page peek at Dark Horse Comics' Hellboy and the B.P.R.D.: The Return of Effie Kolb Part 2 in the full gallery below... if you dare!