B.P.R.D.: Hell on Earth – Lake of Fire

B.P.R.D.: Hell on Earth – Lake of Fire
B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth Lake of Fire review
  • North American Publisher / ISBN: Dark Horse - 978-1-61655-402-6
  • Volume No.: 8
  • Release date: 2014
  • UPC: 9781616554026
  • Contains adult content?: no
  • Does this pass the Bechdel test?: no
  • Positive minority portrayal?: no
  • CATEGORIES: Horror

Lake of Fire is unusual for Hell on Earth, at five chapters being among the longer outings, and juxtaposing what happens happens to two characters outwith the confines of the B.P.R.D.

Mike Mignola and John Arcudi begin by noting the passage of several months since the events of A Cold Day in Hell. Carla Giorocco is now back from Russia, but this isn’t her story. Liz Sherman has been barely seen since the Plague of Frogs sequence ended, last in an ambulance having been rescued from a collapsed building, while the younger Fenix found the B.P.R.D. not to her taste, but is still having premonitions about the future. Both are set against the background of limitations imposed by a world where monsters run free. Liz is recovering in a clinic where the new doctor has a disturbing research sideline and little conscience, while Fenix has found a crazy hippy community worshipping what seems to be a giant egg. Both believe they’ve found a form of peace for a while, but while it’s already been noted Liz believes she’s lost her powers, Fenix is now beginning to doubt hers.

Tyler Crook is the artist on what’s near enough his series swansong, which is a great shame. After this only a short story two volumes down the line is to come. He’s good at scenes of people having ordinary conversations, and like Guy Davis before him, never stints on the details needed to give the impression of real locations where people actually live or work. His monsters also have a presence.

Lake of Fire is a redemption arc that does what it needs to overall, but may hold greater appeal to readers who have a fondness for Liz from her previous starring role, rather than those who’ve jumped on board with Hell on Earth. Saddled with a mad scientist to cope with, her story is eventually ordinary and predictable when it comes to the final chapter, which sort of dribbles to a halt with the set-up needed for The Reign of the Black Flame.

Both stories are also found in the combination volume Hell on Earth 3.