Born of a union between demon and witch.
Summoned to Earth in a burst of flames during one of history's bloodiest conflicts.
Possessor of the stone right hand of a rebellious fallen angel; drenched in the blood of a doomed, covetous race.
Destined to bring forth the Apocalypse and lead the armies of Hell.
His name is Hellboy and he's a really nice bloke.
It was Siberian sex-addict, monk and mystic Grigori Rasputin who, on December 23rd 1944, summoned Hellboy to Earth. Ostensibly to provide a powerful weapon for the waning Nazi war effort, but with the ultimate goal of breaking free the seven dragons of chaos, the Ogdru Jahad. Despite these machinations both military and mystical, Rasputin's 'Project Ragna Rok' would not yield them their prize, as rather than materialising on a desolate, barren Scottish island, Hellboy was instead born in the desolate, barren English Midlands.
Specifically in the crumbling of ruins of a church in East Bromwich, the very church from which the witch, Sarah Hughes' soul was claimed by the demon Azzael some 300 years earlier. Though these were the human mother and infernal father of Hellboy, they would not be the ones to raise him. That honour would go to Trevor Bruttenholm, one of three members of the 'British Paranormal Society' responsible for locating Hellboy's true birthplace and the first to see the potential for good in the child.
Furthering the debate of nature versus nurture, it was Bruttenholm who insisted on raising Hellboy as a normal child, though their situation was somewhat out of the ordinary. Living in secrecy on a military airbase in New Mexico with his dog Mac, Hellboy developed at a rapid rate forming familial bonds with Bruttenholm and various military personnel, and just three years after his birth he would make the decision that would sever his ties with Pandemonium for good.
In a universe of epic battles between the forces of Hell, the antediluvian nightmares of the Ogdru Jahad and humanity, the struggle that Hellboy faced was perhaps minor, but no less significant. On being offered a breakfast of pancakes rather than his preferred noodles, Hellboy overcame his mistrust by eating the pancake and in so doing, placed his faith in humanity. Not that Pandemonium was prepared to let go so easily of such a powerful being and so began the struggle for Hellboy's destiny.
Asteroth, Hellboy's paternal uncle, made the first attempt to show the child the potential future that he could embody. From within a hall of mirrors at an otherworldly circus, Hellboy first saw the conquering form of Anung Am Rama, fiery crown of the apocalypse framed between his horns and though not understanding the full weight of this vision, which would haunt him throughout his life, it deeply troubled the boy, who again rejected Hell's advances.
Not that he would find immediate acceptance amongst humanity, even close friends occasionally found him outlandish and on seeing his friend Archie laugh at his attempts to fit in, Hellboy took to sawing his horns down to the more manageable and now iconic stumps. It would take many years for the world at large to accept Hellboy; however following numerous successful missions with the B.P.R.D. in the early 1950's he was granted the status of 'honorary human' by the United Nations and would become a vital agent during the occult cold-war which fomented between Russia and the United States.
In his role as a B.P.R.D. agent he travelled the world during the later 1950's, often heading out on dangerous missions alone. A tragic and drunken sojourn to Mexico led to luchador wrestling bouts with a Frankenstein and a brief, doomed marriage before his journey continued. It was during this time that he would first encounter the mysterious Osiris Club and attempt to slay for them a dragon. Though at the time he was unaware it was here that any doubts as to his nature were put to rest, as from the blood, spilled from his wounds, lilacs grew. A symbol of sanctity.
So his life continued at this point, punching strange apparitions across the globe. But of particular significance was a call to an Irish cottage in 1959 to deal with a troublesome changeling baby. By casting out the fairy Gruagach and retrieving young Alice Monaghan, he would set in motion a scheme of revenge and a struggle for power that would lead to his own Earthly demise.
You can follow the life and times of the world’s greatest paranormal investigator in the pages of Helboy, B.P.R.D. 1946-48, Hellboy and the B.P.R.D., B.P.R.D.: The Devil You Know, and most of the sort stories. And you should. The date of publishing this is Helloy Day for a reason. In our opinion, this is the best comic universe ever to have been created. This website stands as a testament to the work of Mike Mignola, John Arcudi, Dave Stewart, Scott Allie, Clem Robins, Duncan Fegredo, Guy Davis, Ryan Sook, Tyler Crook, Laurence Campbell, Michael Avon Oeming, Katii O’Brien, et. al. With the new film coming out, this is the perfect time to get back into the books, read something you’d never read before, or start for the very first time. It’s literally the best time to be a Mignolaverse fan, so enjoy it before the coming Ragnarok.