Previously in the world of Hellboy – After over 60 years of battling things that went bump in the night, Hellboy found out he was a direct descendant of King Arthur and the rightful King of all Britain. Great news though shortly after that he died saving the world from a dragon whose sole purpose was to destroy us all.

With a nick name like Hellboy though one cannot even fathom that death would prove an end to his story. His true name though is even more interesting as it is (have fun trying to say this on a daily basis) “Anung Un Rama” whose literal translation is “and upon his brow is set a crown of fire.” For those who have been following the story know the the crown mentioned in his name is actually the crown that will make him a King of Hell.

Fast forward to present day and Mike Mignola once more weaves a tale that will have readers transfixed. Hellboy is not only dead but also in Hell. Right there that sounds like a great setup for action but there are no demons for him to be fighting as Hell is quite empty. He is accompanied by a mysterious sorcerer who we aren’t given a lot of information about and seems to refuse answering any direction questions. However, he seems to know a lot about what’s going on in Hell and is doling that information out about things that could spur Hour hero to action. As Hellboy follows him through the empty city we learn that they are in Pandemonium, the capital of hell.

Unlike the first title in the return of Hellboy to print (something fans have been waiting a year for) we focus on plot instead of action. As we are being fed the same tidbits of information that our favorite red demon is being fed, all it is truly giving us is more questions. This is clearly the prelude portion of the comic that will be the cause of what sets him on a new course in his ‘life’ as fate refuses to leave him in peace.

As we pass through the once great seat of Hell we first visit the throne reserved for Hellboy. Upon the throne is his crown of fire, his father’s broken sword, and his ring of office all of which are there for Hellboy to take and all of which he leaves behind. Before they leave this citadel though his mysterious traveling companion shows him one more thing as there is one person left in Hell – Satan, The Enemy. The previous ruler has been laying in slumber for the past 2000 years and his partner mentions how easy it would be to take his life in such a state.

Leaving his throne Hellboy is left with another spirit who, while similar to his first guide is less forthcoming with direct information. At this point Hellboy’s guide brings him to the entrance of hell where the spirits of the minor damned flow freely into it’s doors. Nearly right after the spirits enter they are snuffed out to be refashioned into an army of the damned for Hellboy to rule over. This army has the power to break down the walls between Heaven and Earth. His army which can only be brought forth by the power held within his always prominently over sized right hand.

Hellboy will of course have none of this so in the final scene is brought to see a moment from the past when his own birth occurred.

We close on this as the pieces have been put into motion. The play is set and the stakes are high with all of the power of Hell being teased before Hellboy who has no want for it. Yet knowing his path is preordained what will change in the upcoming issues? What will cause him to take up a fight he believes that he should be done with? I for one can’t wait to see!

Writer: Mike Mignola
Artist: Mike Mignola
Colorist: Dave Stewart
Cover Artist: Mike Mignola