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War on Frogs

War on Frogs 1
Written by Mike Mignola & John Arcudi
Illustrated by Herbe Trimpe (#1)
John Severin (#2 pencils)
Guy Davis (#2 inks)
Karl Moline (#3)
Peter Snejbjerg (#4)
Colored by Dave Stewart (#1–3)
Bjarne Hansen (#4)
Lettered by Clem Robins
Edited by Scott Allie
Originally Published in B.P.R.D.: War on Frogs #1–4
Internal Numbering B.P.R.D. #44,51,57,63
Date Published June 2008 (#1)
December 2008 (#2)
June 2009 (#3)
December 2009 (#4)
Collected in B.P.R.D. – Volume 12: War on Frogs
Omnibus Edition B.P.R.D. Plague of Frogs – Volume 2

War on Frogs is a four-issue limited series. It follows members of the B.P.R.D. in the war against the frog monsters. Each issue had a different guest artist and were all one-shots.

Publication HistoryEdit

The four issue mini-series was published from June 2008 to December 2009. The story was collected together with Revival in the trade paperback B.P.R.D.: War on Frogs in April 2009. In October 2011, the short story Revival was re-released by Dark Horse Digital as War on Frogs #5.

The series was later collected in the omnibus format in B.P.R.D. Plague of Frogs – Volume 2 along with The Dead and The Black Flame. As explained by Scott Allie in the introduction, War on Frogs and The Black Flame were put into a different reading order:

  • The Black Flame #1 (retitled War on Frogs: Chapter 1)
  • War on Frogs #1 (retitled War on Frogs: Chapter 2)
  • Revival (retitled War on Frogs: Chapter 3)
  • War on Frogs #2 (retitled War on Frogs: Chapter 4)
  • War on Frogs #4 (retitled War on Frogs: Chapter 5)
  • The Black Flame #2-6 (retitled The Black Flame: Chapters 1-5)
  • War on Frogs #3 (retitled The Black Flame: Epilogue)

SynopsisEdit

Part OneEdit

The first issue was illustrated by Herb Trimpe and focused on Roger.

As the frog cult spreads across America, Roger the Homunculus returns to the site of the B.P.R.D.'s first clash with the frog creatures--the ruins of Cavendish Hall, where Hellboy, Abe, and Liz first encountered both the frogs and Rasputin to track down the final pieces of the puzzle of the Cavendish family.

After Abe turns down Kate's suggestion of re-visiting Cavendish Hall, (the site of the events featured in Seed of Destruction) for clues regarding the frogs, Roger leads a B.P.R.D. field team to investigate the site. Roger scouts the caverns under the remains of the hall, where he uncovers a shrine left by the Cavendish brothers to their dead mother, including her preserved corpse. The brothers reveal themselves as a form of evolved frog monster. After an extended battle with the monsters, Roger gets the upper hand after they become distracted when a stray bullet destroys the corpse of Emma Cavendish. As the brothers grieve over their mother's corpse, Roger destroys them with a volley from his gun. As the cleanup team arrives, Roger ponders whether it was worth disturbing the frogs in the first place and orders the clean up crew to just leave without further action.

Part TwoEdit

The second issue was illustrated by John Severin and focused on a team of ordinary B.P.R.D. soldiers hunting down a nest of frog monsters on an abandoned battleship -- only to become their quarry's prey. This issue features the first and last appearance of several B.P.R.D. agents, presumably drafted from the military.

In May 2005, a squadron of B.P.R.D. soldiers are sent to investigate a possible frog nest on an abandoned battleship on the Calafornia Coast. Lead by Lieutenant Bradley, agents Varadi, Demers, Bernie D'Andrea, Whitcomb, Bama and Kohler investigate the wreck. As they explore the claustrophobic corridors of the ship, they learn that the frogs may still be alive. The team is gradually picked off one by one by frog monsters as a helpless Abe Sapien listens in on the radio frequency. Finally Demers, the last remaining member of the team, makes it onto the deck of the ship and is confronted by a frog monster. Having no weapons, Demers arms himself with a broken pipe and prepares to go down fighting. The final pages of the story feature an army major reaching the site and corresponding with Abe over radio. He reveals that there was actually only one frog monster on the ship and commends Demers for his bravery in slaying the monster at the cost of his own life.

Part ThreeEdit

The third issue was illustrated by Karl Moline and focused on Liz Sherman and Ashley Strode, a new character.

Set in July 2006, Ashley greets a despondent and disaffected Liz in the B.P.R.D. canteen. After being blanked by Liz, Ashley discusses with her colleagues how she admires Liz as a strong female presence in the B.P.R.D., but worries that she hasn't seemed right since the events of B.P.R.D.: The Black Flame.

In a flashback to April 2005, Liz has destroyed a frog nest in a sewage plant in Louisianna. Daimio expresses concern for Liz's reckless handling of the mission, but Liz is dismissive of his comments. Ashley Strode is informed of Liz's tragic history by a fellow B.P.R.D. agent.

In a montage, Liz is shown leading B.P.R.D. field teams to clear out frog nests in Iowa, Washington, Utah & Oregan throughout 2005.

In the B.P.R.D. headquarters, February 2006, Ashley and her partner encounter Liz in a corridor and Ashley attempts to introduce herself. However Liz is dismissive and distant, and doesn't even ask her name.

In a meeting with Kate and Abe, Liz brings up Abe's reluctance to engage in field work. However Kate criticizes Liz's recent approach to missions, advising her to focus on developing agent's skills rather than cold efficiency. With this in mind Liz is sent to lead a mission to check up on an abandoned frog nest in Handelson, Montana.

The B.P.R.D. team searches the sight, Liz searching the sub-basement while Ashely and her partner search upstairs. Liz exits the buliding believing the site to be safe. Meanwhile Ashley and her partner are ambushed by frogs. Ashley is incapacitated and her partner is killed by the monsters. Just before Ashley is killed Liz arrives to save the day. Ashely quickly recovers and helps Liz destroy the remaining frogs. They leave the mission on friendly, first name terms.

The flashback sequences end and the issue ends where it started in the B.P.R.D. canteen with Ashley and her colleagues mystified as to Liz's current state of mind.

In the final panels, we are given a glimpse into Liz's point of view. The mysterious mystic who appeared to Liz in B.P.R.D.: The Black Flame stands behind Liz, an ever-looming presence.

Part FourEdit

The fourth and final issue was illustrated by Peter Snejbjerg, with colors by Bjarne Hansen. The story focused on Johann Kraus.

Johann Kraus, the ectoplasmic man, leads a team of B.P.R.D. agents against the frog monsters as they spread across the country. But this time, burning the nest of frogs is not the end of the battle for Johann, as he learns about the horrifying afterlife of the Bureau's sworn enemies.

In March, 2006, Johann leads a field team to exterminate a frog nest in Kansas. After quickly destroying the frogs, Johann orders Agent Catlett to burn the remains. However, unseen by everyone except Johann, their ghosts remain. Johann briefly tells the ghosts to try and move on. Despite this they continue to haunt the team as they return back to the B.P.R.D. HQ. The ghosts begin to induce illness in agent Catlett to blackmail Johann into helping them. After discussing the problem with Ben Daimio and seeing Catlett's condition worsen, Johann is persuaded into helping the frogs. In spirit form he leads them into the atmosphere and holds a seance. A vast breach opens into another plain of existance and the frog spirits transcend. However, Johann's soul is also nearly pulled into the abyss, but he eventually escapes. Back in the B.P.R.D. HQ Johann is seen reading from a bible. Daimio approaches him and apologizes for dismissing the existential risk Johann faced.

Note: This final scene and conversation with Daimio is later referenced in a dream Johann experiences in the The Long Death.

Part FiveEdit

See Revival for full article

Ben Daimio hunts down frog monsters masquerading as faith healers.

GalleryEdit

B.P.R.D. Publication Order
Preceded by
Bishop Olek's Devil
War on Frogs
Followed by
The Ectoplasmic Man

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