BPRD

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From left to right: Johann Kraus, Liz Sherman, Abe Sapien, Roger, Kate Corrigan. Not pictured: Captain Benjamin Daimio.

A spinoff series of comics set in the Hellboy universe, which picks up after Hellboy leaves the titular Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense. The series follows the remaining agents as they continue trying to prevent The End of the World as We Know It, fighting the rapidly multiplying frogmen and confronting several particularly nasty villains.

It's written by Mike Mignola working together with John Arcudi, and mostly illustrated by Guy Davis, whose artwork sets a different tone from the original series. Beginning in 2011, the series was rebranded as BPRD: Hell On Earth.

Tropes used in BPRD include:
  • Alternate Continuity: Averted. It's still occurring along the same timeline as Hellboy, but despite the scale of events in both series, they virtually never overlap.
  • All There in the Manual: You really have to read a lot of mythology to get a lot of the idiosyncrasies of the plot.
  • Amplifier Artifact: the strange plug-thing Liz uses on the mountain-sized Ogdru Hem
  • Apocalypse How: By King of Fear, Class 0s are occurring all over the world. Munich is destroyed by ancient Hyperborean robots, Nebraska gets ravaged by Katha-Hem, Houston is obliterated by a supervolcano, a gigantic crustacean creature is sitting in the Salton Sea and breathing toxic vapors into the atmosphere, and half the Indonesian archipelago's just disappeared.
  • Apocalypse Maiden: In King of Fear', it's been revealed that Abe will also have a role in the end of the world.
  • Artificial Human: Roger the Homunculus.
  • Astral Projection: Johann Kraus.
  • Back From the Dead: Subverted hard with Roger. They even spend an entire story arc letting you think it's gonna happen.
  • Badass Bookworm: Kate Corrigan.
  • Badass Normal: Many of the BPRD agents, and especially Captain Daimio.
  • The Beast Master: Panya can telepathically control non-sentient creatures. This also includes humans who are severely mentally disabled.
  • Big Bad: The Black Flame, Memnan Saa.
  • The Blank: Johann, due to his lack of a physical form.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: Moreso than Hellboy, for sure. Guy Davis doesn't make much use of gory discretion shots. Killing Ground is especially violent.
  • Chiaroscuro: When Mignola's doing the art it borders on tenebrism.
  • Clue From Ed: Used very sparsely, generally to point you out which prior stories a referenced event occurred in. They are not attributed to an editor.
  • Comic Book Time: The only major character who's aged visibly in the nearly two decades since the comic began is Tom Manning, and that may just be due to Guy Davis' different art style.
    • Kate Corrigan also seems to be aging. Guy Davis' art makes Liz look reasonably older, but her birth date's 1962.
  • Cosmic Horror Story / Lovecraft Lite
  • Crazy Survivalist: Daimio, as he appears in New World.
  • Crossover Cosmology: Deities and monsters of classical mythology make regular appearances, while God was responsible for the creation of the (originally non-evil) Cosmic Horrors mentioned above.
  • Crystal Prison: The Ogru'Jahad's prison.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Liz Sherman.
  • A Day in the Limelight.
    • The "War on Frogs" miniseries could count for several agents and "Garden of Souls" is almost completely devoted to Abe Sapien with some supporting action for Daimio.
  • Demon Slaying
  • Demonic Possession: Plays a major part in Daimio's backstory.
  • Dull Surprise: Liz Sherman's default expression for most of the comics. Justified, as she's supposed to be depressed and heavily medicated due to her tragic past, and in the later BPRD series, she gets better.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Ogdru Jahad and their 369 offspring Ogdru Hem, which are Sadu-Hem and Katha-Hem, among others. H.P. Lovecraft's influence here is no surprise.
  • Evil Sorcerer: Memnan Saa.
  • Extranormal Institute: The BRPD's offices.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: The size of an Olympic swimming pool.
  • Fetus Terrible: Mrs. Kihnl's babies in New World, revealed to be more Ogdru Hem.
  • Fish People: Abe Sapien.
  • Geek: Kate Corrigan was the occult/mythology geek in the comics (it was her day job before she joined the BPRD). Recently, Johann Krauss seems to be turning into the evil version of this.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Notably subverted with Daimio. He has hideous scarring along the left side of his head, and is missing an ear and most of his left cheek. Blame the jaguar demon that's now inhabiting his soul.
  • Gratuitous German: Johann Krauss, when he loses his temper. Allmachtiger!
  • Grimmification
  • Hollow World: The miniseries Hollow Earth.
  • Humongous Mecha: The Hyperborean war machines.
  • Initialism Title
  • Kill It with Fire: Liz uses this a lot, obviously. Also, the BPRD usually sends one "flame-thrower guy" with field teams when they expect contact. Most of the Cosmic Horrors can be killed with fire, though not all.
  • Levitating Lotus Position: Liz talks to a Shangri La monk while he's in the Lotus Position three feet off the ground.
  • Love Triangle: A damn weird one in Johann Krauss' past. He fell in love with the ghost of a man's wife he was hired to contact as a spirit medium. Naturally, this did not end well.
  • Masked Luchador: Lobster Johnson (see Show Within a Show, below).
  • Mighty Whitey: Invoked, but ultimately subverted by Martin "Fu Manchu" Gilfryd.
  • A Million Is a Statistic: Used and inverted by the protagonists and the antagonists in "The Black Goddess."
  • Mysterious Past: Oh, yeah. The exact amount of mystery varies between characters. Several have even gotten enough plot attention to not be mysterious anymore.
  • Mundane Utility: Liz Sherman lighting her cigarettes with pyrokinesis.
  • Obstructive Bureaucrat: Agent Devon seems to be turning into one.
  • Our Monsters Are Weird: Frequently, especially the hybrid animals in Garden of Souls.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: Given the nature of the series, this is to be expected. In 1946, Bruttenholm and his team have to deal with Vampire-Human hybrids made from injecting the mentally and physically disabled, gay, and other prisoners that the Nazis had rounded up with vampire blood.
  • Put on a Bus: What the series did to Hellboy. This also happens to Abe in an awesome way in The Dead.
  • Red Shirt: Just about any regular BPRD agent who has the gall to tag along with the main characters on their missions isn't coming back.
    • Certain agents may be MauveShirts, however, with Agent Devon being one of the more notable examples.
    • Redshirt Army (Invoking Faceless Goons as well).
      • They did, however, Take a Level In Badass in a few short stories. Sadly so did the Frogs...
      • They do okay when deployed properly and with heavy artillery backup. Sadly the BPRD often underestimates their opposition...
  • Shell Shocked Senior: Captain Ben Daimio. He was dead for three days, wouldn't you be too?
  • Show Within a Show: After his death in 1939, two-fisted adventure hero The Lobster became the subject of a number of these: Pulp Magazine stories, comic books, Film Serials, and finally Mexican movies with The Lobster (or, rather, "Lobster Johnson," the last name taken from the Secret Identity he was given in the pulps) as a Masked Luchador. Compared to his Real Life, they all make for massive cases of Adaptation Decay, and are all considered atrociously terrible, although some people (including Hellboy himself) enjoy them anyway. The existence of these adaptations allow the Hellboy-verse's US government to cover up the existence of the real Lobster (and the fact that he was a spy for them in WWII), and as a further side-effect, the character is more readily known, on both sides of the Fourth Wall, as "Lobster Johnson."
  • Silent Scenery Panel: Lots of close-ups of thematically-important artwork and statuary.
  • Sixth Ranger: While sorting the various agents into roles is a bit tricky, Captain Daimio seems to be a Sixth Ranger. Johann may also qualify.
  • Spin-Off
  • Steampunk: The robots encasing Langdon Everett Caul's former colleagues in Garden of Souls.
  • Stylistic Suck: See Show Within a Show, above.
  • Super-Powered Evil Side: Daimio has one, thanks to the aforementioned Demonic Possession. In Killing Ground, it wakes up.
  • The Team Normal: Kate Corrigan.
  • Technology Porn: One word: Helicarrier.
  • The Unmasqued World: Especially as the series continues, and any semblance of secrecy was torn to shreds in The Black Flame, in which a mountain-sized Eldritch Abomination rampages through the central United States and crushes several cities to rubble.
  • Urban Legend: Lobster Johnson, and this is the main reason why all the in-universe stories about him are pulpy and wildly incorrect.
  • Villains Never Lie: During his efforts to win Liz's trust, Memnan Saa points out that nothing he has told her before was untrue.
  • Villain Team-Up: See main article for details.
  • The Virus: One of the more horrific, and common, fates in the series is being transformed into horrible demon-spawn frog monsters. No race, gender or age group is spared.
    • The Virus has been upgraded as of King of Fear: The Frogmen are being replaced by hideous four-legged crablike humanoids, and the infecting agent is now airborne.
  • Wreathed in Flames: Liz can do this.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: The BPRD comes down on the wrong side of this question when it fits Roger the Homunculus with a self-destruct.
    • And this comes up in The Black Goddess a bit with Johann.
  • Zorro Mark: Lobster Johnson's lobster claw.