If Hellboy put a personal ad in the paper, it might read something like this…
SRM seeks companion. Must love cats, cigars and candy bars. Enjoys old movies and kicking ass. Won’t do dishes. Demonic lineage okay. Must not be evil.
A scant few comic book heroes would have as interesting an ad, and that’s why we love Hellboy. He’s one of the most idiosyncratic comic book heroes out there. Mike Mignola, who based the character partly on his father, describes Hellboy thusly: “a blue-collar guy – a plumber or an electrician – who comes in with a box of tools and says, ‘Where is the leak?’ and goes at fixing the leak.”
Producer Mike Richardson concurs: “He’s a blue-collar hero who just wants to be one of us.”
And perhaps that’s why we relate to him so well. He’s just a regular guy with a whole lot of badass inside. And here are some of our favorite Hellboy quirks that help make him human…
There is no other comic-book-superhero-turned-movie-hero has such an affinity for fuzzy friends. Not even the Batman has such love for his namesake. But Hellboy… the dude just loves cats. With his comic book mother being a witch and his demonic appearance, he has found a special kinship in his feline pals. And they seem to like him too, so he’s gotta be allergic.
As a product of a darker world, Hellboy’s demonic appearance is fully realized when his horns grow out completely. (And we get a glimpse of this in both films.) He files them down to appear more human. Still, we don’t know if it’s doing the trick, considering the bright red skin and the tail don’t quite look normal.
THE BIG GUNS
The Doom video game may have the BFG, but in the new film, Hellboy has the Big Baby. His oversized pistol from the comics is called “The Samaritan” in the first film. His new gun not only fires huge, flare-sized bullets loaded with everything from holy water to garlic, but it’s also frickin’ huge. I’m going to call it the BMFG.
THE RIGHT HAND OF DOOM
It’s as much a physical signature of Hellboy as the horns and the fiery red skin. His big, stone hand is great in a fight. It’s also the focus of multiple stories in the Hellboy universe. Formerly the right hand of one of the greater spirits watching over Earth, it was also used to create a dragon. In both the comics and the first film, Hellboy’s hand is meant to bring about Armageddon. In a way, Hellboy is the protector of this tool, preventing it from falling into the wrong “hands,” if you’ll pardon the pun.
In the new film, we get confirmation that Hellboy has a heart (similar to how we got proof that Iron Man’s Tony Stark has one as well). But is he really fireproof? He says so in the first film (to Sammael: “I’m fireproof. You’re not.”). However, from the comics, he’s vulnerable… just incredibly resilient like the Hulk or Wolverine.
ALL THE TVs
Well, in the films, Hellboy is sequestered to his room in the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense. What else is there to do but watch television. He’s got a bank of them, from all the ages, and it keeps him entertained. And, the new film is filled with monsters and happens to be produced by Universal, the home of the Hollywood monster. Look for cameo clips from the classic Universal monster movies, including The Bride of Frankenstein and The Wolfman.
It’s said that Hellboy smells of dry-roasted peanuts, but we’ll never know for sure until the studios bring Odorama back to the theaters.