Odd Jobs

Authors: Various
Titan Books
RRP 10.99
ISBN 1 84023 571 3
Available now

In 1994, Mike Mignola created one of the most unique and visually arresting comic series to ever see print: Hellboy. Tens of thousands have followed the exploits of "the World's greatest paranormal investigator" in comic form, and in the novel, Hellboy: The Lost Army, written by Christopher Golden. Now fans of the comic series can enjoy the world of Hellboy as seen through the eyes of some of today's best writers...

Odd Jobs is a rather interesting collection of short stories. Worthy of mention are: Yvonne Navarro's Medusa's Revenge, which sees our red hero taking on the creature who can turn one to stone by a single glance; I had Bigfoot's Baby, by Max Allan Collins, which sees Hellboy track down a man in a fur suit; and Greg Rucka's Delivered which sees a giant rat after Hellboy's services.

Hellboy creator, Mike Mignola's introduction to this collection is incredibly humble. Here he points out his failings as a writer. Is this the same Mignola who created some of the greatest comic writing in recent years? While he might not be able to convey his true intentions through the use of words and prefers to illustrate his visions, this in no way detracts from the fact that Mignola is a writing genius. His comic writing style is unique and his illustrations are painstakingly beautiful.

And that is my only complaint about this collection. I would rather read Mignola's words through the depth of his illustrations than read a Hellboy story. It's not that these stories are bad, far from it. It is just that Hellboy is first and foremost a visual experience.

That said, Hellboy fans who can't get enough of Mignola's work will find this collection a great addition to their collection.

Darren Rea

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