Pinhead vs Marshal Law: Law in Hell (1993)

Publié le par hevydevy

All illustrations are © Kevin O'Neill, Pat Mills & Clive Barker    

 

Released material

2x 32 pages, drawings and inks by Kevin O'Neill, colours by Steve Buccelato (not the best results of the series) and lettering by Janice Chiang.

 

In the late 1993, Marshal Law was published again in comics format (for the last time to date) by Epic Comics (a Marvel Comics division). This two part story (titled "Hell for Leather" and "Hell to Pay") has been entirely scripted by Pat Mills, Clive Barker being cited only to have created Pinhead and his universe. Both covers are embossed with reflection effects (hence the strange scans below).

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Up to this date (until the Top Shelf omnibus perhaps), that story has never been collected in paperback form.

 

In March 1995, Comics Forum pursues his works on Marshal Law with the translation of this story as Law En El Infierno, and it's the only non English speaking country I know of to have translated this one.

 

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This edition features an introduction written by Lorenzo F. Diaz and the back cover for original issue #1 (but the cover of issue #2 is absent).

 

Plot

Marshal Law has finally found a new (super) girlfriend, who invites him to a therapy group led by Seraph, an angel allegedly came from paradise. This paradise turns out to be a demonic world dedicated to the expression of pain and extreme sadomasochism. Marshal Law will have to deal with the high priest of this hell: Pinhead, leader of the Cenobites, demons that have mastered the art of inflicting pain.

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An introduction to the universe of Pinhead

Pinhead is a character born of the imagination of Clive Barker, a British writer (in "The Hellbound Heart novel", in 1986).

Pinhead became wordly renonwed when the novel inspired a film: "Hellraiser", directed by the author himself in 1987. In the movie, Pinhead (not credited as such in the credits) is described as the leader of the Cenobites, demons that comes from an alternative universe, a kind of hell devoted to the pleasures of ultimate sado-masochistic pleasure. Entrance to this alternate reality is controlled by a magical artifact (a cube puzzle box which one has to solved). In this demonic world, users of the cube  suffer the worst imaginable tortures (skinned alive, dismembered, drained of blood, etc..), whether they have willingly wanted it or not. The Cenobites occupy only little screen in this first episode.

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In the second episode: "Hellraiser II: Hellbound", out in 1988 (only written by Clive Barker and directed by Tony Randel), we learn a little bit more about Pinhead who seems to have a human origin: he was the British army officer Elliot Spencer. The latter, whose existence dates back to colonial times, had the bad idea to want to play with the puzzle box (partly willingly), and found himself transformed into a Cenobite under the command of Lord Leviathan.

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Finally, in "Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth" (1992, directed by Anthony Hickox, written by Peter Atkins and final sequel with the consent of Clive Barker), actor Doug Bradley, who assumes the dual role Pinhead /Elliot Spencer, had a major importance in the film (second in the credits and a more consistent presence on the screen). Pinhead's human alter ego is thus represented with a more detailed background and the main threat of the film (which was not the case in the first two movies). It is also in this episode (the last before the release of this team up with Marshal Law) that mention is made of the Great War as a key role in the past of Captain Elliot Spencer, and we understand clearly that the atrocities he had to face during the First World War are the source of his tragic fate.

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