In which we learn why Rasputin joined forces with Russia’s greatest enemy, and how Professor Bruttenholm became involved in the Allies’ shadow war against the Nazis’ occult warfare program.

I’ve always been a sucker for a good alternate history, especially when it goes the Raiders of the Lost Ark route of having the Germans trying to uncover and control Things Man Was Not Meant To Know during World war Two. So when I discovered that Mike Mignola and Chris Roberson were going to give us the story of how Rasputin wound up working for Germany, and how he first crossed paths with Professor Trevor Bruttenholm, they had me at “Rasputin”.

Equal parts prequel to Hellboy and origin story for Hellboy’s mentor, Rasputin: The Voice of the Dragon’s first issue does not disappoint. It opens with a German officer recruiting Rasputin with the promise of fulfilling his terrible destiny, then shifts focus to Bruttenholm working as a British intelligence officer whose research into some of the stranger of the German messages his colleagues have decoded uncovers a most dire supernatural threat.

The writing is first-rate, the art is wonderfully moody, the colors are gorgeous, and it’s going to be a painfully long wait for the next issue.

Recommendation: Buy!