The release of the Hellboy trailer has fans of Mike Mignola's iconic demon anti-hero seriously debating the merits of this reboot - but maybe today's offering will help sway opinion in a more positive direction. After all, it's hard to hate on the lovely Milla Jovovich, who appears in this latest Hellboy image as the fearsome Blood Queen!
In the comics, the Blood Queen is known as Nimue, "The Queen of Blood." She was the most powerful of all the witches in Britain during the reign of King Arthur, and learned the art of sorcerery from Merlin, whom she betrayed and locked away for all eternity. The power of her magic, without Merlin as a teacher, drove Nimue mad, and drove her into the dark embrace of the world-ending dragon, Ogdru Jahad. Sensing the grave threat she posed, the other witches united to kill Nimue, cutting her body into many pieces, which were spread around the globe. When Nimue revealed the ability to regenerate her dismembered body, her pieces were locked in a box and buried somewhere deep underground.
In some of Hellboy's most famous storylines ("Darkness Calls," "The Wild Hunt" "The Fury") Nimue is nominated to become leader of Britain's modern-day witches, after Hellboy refused the job. Her remains were located and dug up by Hellboy's adversary Gruagach, and thanks to the unwilling blood donations of an entire village, Nimue is resurrected. The Blood Queen obtains an artifact of power (a helmet) and crowns herself the Goddess of War, forcing Hellboy ona quest to obtain the legendary Excalibur, in order to battle Nimue. That battle's climax sees the Blood Queen transformed from human form into a full-fledged dragon, thanks to the power of Ogdru Jahad.
This Hellboy reboot is clearly borrowing heavily from the "Darkness Calls," "Wild Hunt" and "Fury" sagas of the comics, which raises some interesting questions about Milla Jovovich's role as the villainess, and how the events of the movie may play out. The two biggest questions are whether or not we'll get to see Jovovich transform into some kind of CGI dragon monster - and whether or not Hellboy will hit unsuspecting fans with the big twist ending of the original "Wild Hunt" storyline.
In the comics, "The Wild Hunt" ends with Hellboy obtaining a second mystical sword, which he uses to battle and slay Dragon Nimue. However, when Nimue's spirit is being dragged to hell by the witches she killed, The Blood Queen uses her last earthly act to kill Hellboy and drag him into hell with her, kicking off the "Hellboy in Hell" story arc.
Hellboy hits theaters on April 12th.