Checker Publishing – Hellraiser Collected Best Volume 1


Hellraiser Collected Best Volume 1

OK, I liked Hellraiser a lot back when I first started reading comics, and obviously a “collected best” collection is going to have a lot to live up to. I should also mention that Amazon listed a Volume 2 coming out, and if I remember correctly there might even be more coming, so this one doesn’t have to be THE book to represent the series. So let’s just take it as a collection and see if I can slow down my rambling long enough to tell you what I thought. There are all kinds of big names in this. Neil Gaiman, Mike Mignola, Clive Barker, Marc Hempel, Alex Ross, Dave McKean. The problem with that is that Clive Barker’s stories were the weakest of the bunch. He has a two part story about the origin of what is essentially a superhero team that fights the Cenobites. I didn’t like it back then and I don’t like it now: if I wanted a superhero comic I would read one of the hundreds that are available. It was filled with cliched comic book dialogue too, with exclamation points at the end of every sentence! Man, I hate that. Luckily the slack is more than made up by the rest of the stories in here. They’re at their best, to me, when exploring the psychology of just why people would want to open that damned puzzle box in the first place, and that’s represented well here. “Like Flies to Wanton Boys” is probably the most haunting of the bunch; it’s a tale about a man who gets trapped in his own house, entering a room and finding each successive door a little bit further away. Marc Hempel has a very cartoony, loopy style (those aren’t technical terms), but he did some amazing work in Sandman and also has a great story in here about a pedophile. This is graphic, at times brutal stuff, but it’s more than that. These stories, when they were at their best, went way beyond the concepts of Clive Barker in the movies and turned into something much more interesting. This is a good, solid collection if you haven’t read any of these. It isn’t the best from the whole series, as I have plenty of stories that I remember from the series that aren’t here, but that’s why there’s going to be a Volume 2, right? It’s $17.56 on Amazon right now, if you were curious…

Posted on April 27, 2010, in Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Checker Publishing – Hellraiser Collected Best Volume 1.

Comments are closed.