WonderCon 2012 and the World of Mike Mignola

I know Monday’s are supposed to be reserved for my weekly Pen and Paper topics, but I’m still basking in the geek glow that was WonderCon this past weekend.  Tomorrow’s podcast is chock full of awesome geeky goodness from the Con, but I withheld the majority of my Hellboy/Mike Mignola universe news for my post today.  Although I didn’t attend many panels at the convention (choosing instead to spend way too much money on the sales floor), I did make sure I cleared my schedule to hear what was on the upcoming agenda from my favorite comic writer/artist.

*** CAUTION – THERE BE SPOILERS AHEAD!***

Mignola held a very informal Q&A panel for about an hour an a half, opening the floor to questions from his fans, offering those of us in the audience topics in the next few months.  One of the most important questions on the lips of the audience was in regards to the resolution of Hellboy The Fury #3 in August 2011, in which Mike Mignola killed his most iconic character.  Was the death of Hellboy always the intention that Mignola had?  In his own words, and I believe much to the satisfaction of the audience, Mignola told the audience that as he wrote Hellboy and subsequently created his and the B.P.R.D. universe, the characters and world took on organic lives of their own, and while he knew there were certain benchmarks he intended to hit (Hellboy will lose his eye, this will be the character that kills him, etc.), he really left it to the story to bring about its own natural conclusion.  Fortunately for us as fans of the red-skinned, blue-collared occult detective, death only proves itself to be a doorway to a new chapter, as Mignola continues to work full-time as both writer and artist for the upcoming release of Hellboy in Hell, slated for later this year.

Thankfully, despite all this, there will be plenty of Hellboy universe goodness heading our way in 2012, so here are some highlights from the panel:

  • Hellboy Library Edition Volume #5 and #6 are on the way.  Volume #5 will be the largest of all, with 60+ pages in the sketchbook section alone.  Edition # 6 will include The Storm and The Fury, as well as the collected works from The Bride of Hell and Others trade paperback.
  • Writing for all works in the universe are left in the hands of John Arcudi, Scott Allie, and Mike Mignola only.  This is to ensure that the Hellboy/B.P.R.D./Lobster Johnson/Witchfinder/Lord Baltimore series all maintain sensible continuity, thus keeping the worlds away from ret-con wipes.
  • Joe Golem and the Drowning City was originally intended to be a graphic novel, but is now an illustrated novel coming out later this month.
  • Hellboy has always been Mike Mignola’s “voice” in the comics, while Kate Corrigan‘s looks and “voice” are based on his wife.
  • B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth – The Pickens County Horror #1-2 will feature Mignola’s favorite monster, Vampires.
  • Keep an eye out for the illustrated novella, Father Gaetano’s Puppet Catechism: A Novella – written by Christopher Golden and illustrated by Mike Mignola – slated for release in October.  Happy birthday to me!
  • Hellboy in Hell will feature Hellboy, in Hell, having encounters with all manner of mythic and historical figures, which will result in adventures and stories only the mind of Mignola can fabricate.  I happened to tell Mike that if he were to have Hellboy encounter H.P. Lovecraft, I might name my first child Hellboy.  Everyone thinks I’m kidding… and I’ll be watching for that Lovecraft nod.

So, if you aren’t a Mignola or Hellboy fan, you could probably care less, but if you are, there is plenty to look forward to from the mind of Mignola this coming year.  Oh, and on a personal note, when Lance Henriksen interrupts you mid-sentence with Mike Mignola, who is subsequently interrupted by Steve Niles, just bask in the awesomeness of WonderCon, because that’s what I did!

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