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Hellboy: The Chained Coffin and Others Paperback – August 18, 1998

4.5 out of 5 stars 36 customer reviews
Book 3 of 12 in the Hellboy Series

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Paperback, August 18, 1998
$5.45 $4.05

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Ottakar's Outland Magazine Issue 31, Autumn 2004 : "Rather like an X'-File' investigating the 'X-files', the lantern chinned, wisecracking Hellboy is one of the most endearing heroes to have emerged in comics for a long time, coming across as fresh, inventive, and, above all, highly entertaining." --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Mike Mignola is the acclaimed creator of Hellboy and Zombieworld, and has drawn Batman: Gotham by Gaslight, Aliens and Cloak and Dagger. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Hellboy (Graphic Novels)
  • Paperback: 117 pages
  • Publisher: Dark Horse Books; 1 edition (August 18, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1569713499
  • ISBN-13: 978-1569713495
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 7 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,136,960 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A. Sandoc on August 11, 2004
Format: Paperback
Mike Mignola's first compilation graphic shorts is titled The Chained Coffin and Others. The stories within were compiled from sources such as the Dark Horse Presents comic issues all the way to promotional issue of the comic catalogue Diamond Comics. The one difference between those issues and this compilation was the coloring. The illustrated shorts where in black and white when they first appeared in those issues, but in this compilation book they have been retouched with bold primary colors.

Mignola wrote and drew all the shorts included in Chained Coffin and Others. The coloring he'd done for all the shorts lives up to the previous Hellboy books. There's some inconsistency to the look of each stories artwork, but that's due to some of them being drawn early in Hellboy's history. Some of these stories were done even before the Seed of Destruction story.

All the stories are well-written and they range from laugh-out funny to classically scary. Stand out entries in Chained Coffin and Others are "Christmas Underground" (Mignola's take on the vampire myth), The Wolves of St. August (a werewolf piece) and "Almost Colossus" (the introduction of recurring character Roger the Homunculus). These three takes are great examples of why the Hellboy books are a joy to read. "Christmas Underground" is my personal favorite for combining both a genuinely scary tale with some genuine humanity to turn a simple horror tale into one of redemption and forgiveness.

For readers who have seen the Hellboy feature film, they will recognize a character in the film who actually appears in this compilation: "The Corpse". In the end, I highly recommend this graphic compilation to new fans of Hellboy and for old, loyal fans to pick it up if their old copy has been dog-eared and tattered from frequent readings.
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Format: Paperback
First, I have to begin this by saying that I am a bit bias when it comes to Mike Mignola. I do enjoy his Hellboy work, and recommend it to anyone who likes Lovecraftian influences meshed with Nazi conspiracies and other, even more bizarre, tidbits of folklore.
With The Chained Coffin and Others, I had read the reviews here and had noticed the gaps left in the questioning mind. For instance, I couldn't find a complete listing of what was compiled here, nor did the reviews truly state how good some of the stories, especially the Baba Yaga only printed here, actually were. So, here's a brief listing of the stories a few notes:
1) The Corpse: A baby goes missing and a deal has to be struck to return it. And how hard is it to bury a corpse anyway?
2) The Iron Shoes: This seemed more like filler, actually, but is still not all that bad.
3) The Baba Yaga: I like this story a lot, and had to have it. Unfortunately, it was only available in this TPB. If you read Wake the Devil, you'll want this side story, because references made are gaps to be filled in order to complete the entire Hellboy picture.
4) Christmas Underground: Spirits looming, a castle under siege by some strange curse, and Hellboy Claus? Besides being creepy, it also provides a little laughter.
5) The Chained Coffin: A true gem, presenting the origins of Hellboy (not to be confused with "how Hellboy arrive on Earth") in a most interesting format. Even people who have the original presentation of this should check it out, because the first page has been revamped a bit. Beautiful.
6) Wolves of Saint August: All the pieces of this tale needed to be collected somewhere, so I'm happy for this. As the name implies, something Lupine plagues a town and Hellboy has to investigate.
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Format: Paperback
I've heard and read reviews of this book that seemed to come from the outside. The "outside" being people who are trying too hard to legitimize something that makes no excuses for itself. Hellboy is and always has been a quirky, dark, gothic adventure that is visually stunning as well as primal and disturbing. This collection is an intriguing effort. It has no complete story to tell. Rating each story is futile since the themes vary as well as the design and purpose for each story. Some are an excuse to show Hellboy in an outlandish conflict while others have moments that touch me to the core so profound is the effect of specific sequences. There lies the surprise. No solid premise is present in these little stories. They're like a sketchbook. Some rough ideas are presented as well as finely crafted "images". Every one was written and drawn with a purpose but there's no effort to weave them together in a sequence. The tone in a story like The Chained Coffin is so different from The Corpse that, other than the main character, they share little in common. However, even as they share so little in content, they both speak of a world in the shadow of our own. The world Mike Mignola has created is as sharp as a knife blade cutting across your palm and as subtle as the wings in the night. So eclectic is this collection that it is the perfect introduction to Mignola's creation, Hellboy. Hellboy is brusque, loyal, funny, profound, conflicted and committed. He is all of these and more while uttering few words between blasts of combative, bloody, violence in a nighted world of ancient evil and devious purpose. I wish more writers could do so much with what, sometimes, appears to be so little.
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