Hellmouth #4 Review

by Nick Devonald on January 15, 2020

Writers: Jordie Bellaire & Jeremy Lambert
Artist: Eleonora Carlini
Colors: Mattia Iacono
Letters: Ed Dukeshire

The first thing to strike me as soon as I opened the comic was just how good Eleonora Carlini’s art is. I have mentioned in every review for Hellmouth I’ve done how much I like it but the first couple pages in particular stand out, her demons are incredible and we get a real focus on a couple of them in the opening pages. At the risk of repeating myself from earlier issues I really do hope she gets to stay on in the Buffyverse after Hellmouth concludes, her work has definitely been one of the highlights of Hellmouth.

On a separate note, while we’re talking about the art, a special mention needs to be made to Jenny Frison who’s done the main covers for this series. They’ve been incredible, and while at the end of the day the cover is just a cover, not the reason for buying the comic, it’d be remiss not to mention just how good they are. She’s really captured the characters likenesses and Vampire Xander on the front of this issue is particularly good.

Anyway onto the meat of the comic. The last issue concluded with Buffy seeing Angel in full vampire mode. This secret has been lingering since Angel’s first appearance at the end of Buffy #4, and it’s taken us 18 issues (including Buffy, Angel and Hellmouth) to get to this point. This is what fans have desperately been waiting for and we’re finally getting the payoff. So with all this teasing for so long is the payoff worth it? Yes. That’s all I’ll say for fear of spoilers but fans aren’t going to be disappointed.

We still don’t know what Augie told Angel in the last issue but it promises to be important going forward. That's one of the things I've really enjoyed with the whole rebooted Buffyverse, there's obviously a plan but we have to wait. It really build anticipation for the next issue. We also have the prophecy that has been getting teased throughout Hellmouth, it seems to be coming true. Where will this leave our heroes standing once the smoke clears? It doesn't look great for Buffy or Angel.

Until the event is concluded I can’t say for certain but I’ve been harbouring a suspicion for a while now and this issue just seems to confirm my suspicions that events in Hellmouth and Buffy aren’t happening at the same time. Fans from the TV series know that time moves differently in alternate dimensions, especially in Hell dimensions. Assuming the same is true here I have a feeling that when Hellmouth concludes it’ll be before the last couple of issues of Buffy. But only time will tell.

With only one issue of Hellmouth left, and one issue of Buffy included as part of the Hellmouth event, I can’t begin to guess how it’s all going to conclude. But I’m excited to see, and look forward to being able to read the event in it’s entirety.

I’ve already briefly mentioned Eleonora’s art but it really is outstanding. She captures the characters likeness so well, the Hellmouth is suitably hellish and scary, her demons really stand out amongst the whole rebooted Buffyverse. With Augie, the demon introduced in the last issue of Hellmouth, she manages to create something suitably demonic yet also harmless. It's quite a talent. But even the best artist isn't much without good colors, and Mattia Iacono's colors really make the most of the art. There is no doubt we're not in Kansas anymore, the colors really build on the hellscape. There are a few pages towards the end featuring Angel, which I can't discuss for spoilers, but you'll know them when you get there, and the colors are really incredible here.

The penultimate issue of Hellmouth, the story continues to build and build. I can't wait to see where they go with it next. They manage to capture the feel of the show, the writing is dramatic and art is incredible. This is the highlight of the Buffyverse and I hope these events become a regular staple going forward.

Our Score:


A Look Inside