An animated adaptation of the Hellboy
comicbook series. They feature actors (Ron Perlman, Selma Blair, Doug Jones, and John Hurt) reprising their roles from the live-action film series
, but they're a distinct continuity, closer in spirit to the original comics.
Sword of Storms
Japanese folklorist Professor Sakai opens a forbidden scroll and becomes possessed by demons. While investigating Sakai's disappearance with a BPRD team (including folklorist Kate Corrigan), Hellboy touches a samurai sword left behind at the crime scene, and is suddenly transported into a Magical Land
based on Japanese Mythology
. There, Hellboy learns that the storm demons Thunder and Lightning are sealed within the sword. If freed, Thunder and Lightning will unleash a storm capable of loosing the dragon Ogdru Jahad and all its offspring, bringing about the end of the world. Hellboy also confronts a series of youkai
(directed by the demon-possessed Sakai), nearly all of them intent on breaking the sword and freeing the storm demons.
Meanwhile, Kate Corrigan attempts to solve the mystery of Hellboy's disappearance, as massive storms begin forming (due to the weakening of Thunder and Lightning's prison) and the first wave of "dragons" are freed. Liz Sherman and Abe Sapien become trapped on a deserted ocean island, and must fight one of these dragons.
It's worth noting that the scene where Hellboy meets a group of nukekubi
is adapted almost verbatim from the one-shot comic "Heads", which Mike Mignola cited as one of his favorite Hellboy
Blood and Iron
Hotel mogul Oliver Trombolt requests that the BPRD investigate the supposed haunting of a house he's renovating into a resort. In spite of the fact that Trombolt is clearly doing this as a publicity stunt, Professor Bruttenholm takes an interest in the case and suspects that something genuinely supernatural is occurring. Bruttenholm leads a field team, including Hellboy, Liz Sherman, and Abe Sapien, to investigate.
It soon becomes clear that the hotel truly is haunted... by the victims of Erzsebet Ondrushko, a countess who, decades ago, sold her soul to the witch-goddess Hecate, bathed in the blood of innocents, and was eventually killed by Bruttenholm himself. The BPRD team is assaulted by harpies, hell-hounds, and a werewolf, all servants of Ondrushko intent on raising their vampire mistress from the dead. Hecate herself takes an interest in the proceedings, using them as an opportunity to tempt Hellboy to join team evil.
In addition to the two films, several mini-comics were set in the Animated
continuity. A third film (The Phantom Claw
, the debut of Lobster Johnson) was planned but never came to fruition.
Provides examples of:
- Alternate Continuity
- Animate Inanimate Object: In Sword of Storms, a group of tsukomagami attacks Kate Corrigan.
- Anachronic Order: Blood and Iron starts off with a flashback, then a scene in the current time, and splices in several flashbacks out of order as well.
- Back from the Dead: Erzsebet, through the items she used to torture her victims to death with.
- Batman Cold Open: Sword of Storms opens with Hellboy, Liz Sherman, and Abe Sapien taking down some kind of giant bat-monster (presumably Camazotz, the Mayan bat-god.) Blood and Iron starts with Hellboy and Abe Sapien taking down what seems to be a cybernetic Minotaur.
- The Beast Master: Countess Erzsebet controls several demonic wolves.
- Blood Bath: In Blood and Iron, Erzsebet Ondrushko (who's basically Elizabeth Bathory under a slightly different name) bathed in blood to preserve her youth.
- Bloody Handprint: In Blood and Iron, a number of Ghosts collect at a window, Abe cannot see them, but when he turns around, he does see dozens of bloody hand-prints where their hands were.
- Chekhov's Gun: The hip flask in Blood and Iron. And the room the Werewolf kicks Hellboy into has a very obvious set of deer antlers on the wall.
- Co-Dragons: The Harpy Sisters in Blood and Iron.
- Dark Is Not Evil: The Ghosts in Blood and Iron.
- Demonic Possession: Professor Sakai is on the receiving end by two Youkai, and the longer he's under their spell, the more monstrous he becomes.
- Fanservice: Erszabet having a Blood Bath naked, going from monster to young lady, rubbing herself and moaning in slight pleasure.
- Fan Disservice: When she undergoes the results of the tampered bath and returns to monster form.
- Ghostly Goals: The Ghosts in Blood and Iron wish to be avenged. The Samurai's wife is waiting for her husband to return.
- Holy Burns Evil: Only if the person believes in the holy though. Unfortunately, father Lupescu lost his...
- Holy Hand Grenade: In Blood and Iron, the BPRD successfully weaponizes holy water to use against vampires.
- Honor Before Reason: The Japanese daimyo in Sword of Storms, to the point of killing his own daughter to keep his promise to the demons Thunder and Lightning.
- Kappa: HB fights one of them in Sword of Storms.
- Kitsune: One of these guides HB in Sword of Storms.
- Mood Whiplash: In Blood and Iron after a climactic moment between Bruttenhulm and count Ondrushko, and a sad scene with the ghosts of the victims, the next scene in the film is Hellboy climbing out of a hole entangled in a giant snake and bashing its head into the floor.
- Monster Mash: In Blood and Iron. Harpies, wolves, and a werewolf, all cooperating under the orders of a vampire.
- Mundane Utility: Liz uses her powers to heat up coffee.
- Off with Her Head!: In Sword of Storms, how the daimyo's daughter died.
- Our Dragons Are Different: In Sword of Storms, "dragon" is apparently a title rather than a species. The Ogdru Jahad are referred to as "the dragon" (and the viewer never sees what they look likenote ), and their offspring range from humanoid ogres with thunder powers to squishy, underwater tentacle monsters.
- Our Vampires Are Different: Erzebet sold her soul to Hectate, the Witch Queen. She's in total monster form unless she's bathed in blood in which case it works as a Fountain of Youth for her. She does feed, but it's the bathing that's shown to be her rejuvenation.
- Power Incontinence: Liz hasn't got her fire powers fully under control yet, and needs to be calmed down by Hellboy or Abe.
- Quick Nip: Subverted in Blood and Iron. Broom, cornered by Ondrushko, reaches for his hip flask, prompting the vampire to snidely ask if he needs a drink to calm him in his last hours. The flask is actually filled with holy water, which he flings at the vampire.
- Recursive Adaptation: There were also comic books based on this continuity. So, comicbook adaptations of a cartoon adaptation of a comicbook.
- Red Shirts: Unnamed BPRD agents have a rather low life expectancy.
- Reluctant Hero: Liz, due to her Power Incontinence.
- The Renfield: Father Lupescu turns into a mild version of this.
- Retired Badass: Broom, especially in Blood and Iron where he is responsible for taking down the Big Bad. Twice.
- Shout-Out: In Sword of Storms: "Holy mother, look at the size of that thing!"
- Spared by the Adaptation: Even compared to his counterpart in the live-action movies, Professor Bruttenholm. He survives the events of Blood and Iron.
- Timm Style
- Top-Heavy Guy: HB has a massive upper body and normal human-sized legs.
- Youkai: Besides the aforementioned kitsune and kappa, in Sword of Storms HB encounters rokurokubi, nukekubi, and jorogumo. Meanwhile, Kate Corrigan gets attacked by tsukumogami.