February 2, 2012

Dark Horse Reviews: Dark Horse Presents #8

Dark Horse Presents #8
Publisher: Dark Horse
Writers: Various
Artists: Various (cover by Duncan Fegredo & Dave Stewart)

If you are not familiar with Dark Horse Presents, then you’re in for a real treat, and even if you are, you know what you’re gonna get! The format for this book is several stories that either are a continuation of previous stories or a beginning installment of a new one. Some feature writers and artists that are very prominent, while others are relative unknowns. This wild concoction invokes a fabulous mayhem that sets this book apart from your garden variety comic book. Speaking of well known writer/artist combinations, the two stories I’ll spotlight (10 stories in all) come from some pretty prominent teams, so get ready!

First up is my favorite, B.P.R.D.: An Unmarked Grave. In this tale, we see Kate going to visit a priest in England. This man was one of the last people to see Hellyboy before he died. She really doesn’t get anywhere with him, but has an interesting conversation with a girl in the courtyard. She also gets some troubling news from Bruno back at headquarters. The writing team of Mike Mignola and John Arcudi are the usual writers for that book, and that’s a good thing. I love consistency and writers that know their characters, and these guys do. The artist is Duncan Fegredo (also the cover artist). Rating 4/5

The second story that impressed me was Beasts of Burden: The View from the Hill. The team of Evan Dorkin and Jill Thompson continues to impress me with this title. I’ve only read a couple of these stories, but I have to say I’m hooked. Their depiction of a group of neighborhood animals that can talk is very interesting. They somehow manage to have the animals interact as if they were regular human beings, but the animals still act like animals. It’s difficult to explain, but sometimes when other writers/artists try to pull off talking animals, they just fall flat because they either seem too “human” or it looks absolutely silly when they interact (talking, body language). This particular story was really cool and reminded me of the movie The Sixth Sense. I won’t say anymore about it, but rest assured, it was pretty cool. Rating 4/5

There was one more story I’d like to give a nod to as well, calledThe Massive: North Sea-1995″ (writer – Brian Wood, artist – Kristian Donaldson). In it, we see a security team head to an oil rig to stop some protestors. What happens next is an unbelievable force of nature venting its fury on everyone! Other contributors include Howard Chaykin, Neal Adams, and Mark Wheatley. Overall I’d give the book a 3 out of 5, but as you have read, there were some stories that were excellent, so don’t waste any time, pick this up right now!

Editor’s Note: has been officially pre-nominated for an Eagle Award! Please click here to vote for us in the “Favorite Comics-Related Website” category (question #27). Thank you for your continued support!

Billy Dunleavy




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