Hollow Men are animated skin bags bloated with stink and evil. They fought in The War, their easy creation allowing them to make up the bulk of an army. The Hollow Men have strength in numbers, being able to surround and overwhelm people, making up for their individual weakness. Despite the fact that they are commonly associated with the villains, Hollow Men are mentioned to be used by many others, as cheap labour or security.
Role In Books
Nefarian Serpine used Hollow Men to eliminate his enemies and to provide the manual labour he needed. Two Cleavers had managed to kill a large amount of Hollow Men guarding Serpine's castle during an operation to rescue Skulduggery Pleasant from Serpine's castle, but in the end the Hollow Men overwhelmed the Cleavers, killed one and brought the other into the castle to Serpine. He became the White Cleaver, who is a recurring character in the series. It is assumed that Serpine's Hollow men deflated or went into hiding after Serpine's death.
During the battle of Aranmore Farm, an entire army, consisting of over 300 Hollow Men, were placed by the Diablerie on the farm. They were intended to distract Valkyrie Cain, Skulduggery, Mr. Bliss, the Necromancers and any other allies who were fighting the Diablerie, allowing the portal to the Faceless One's Realm to be opened without interference. However, most of the Hollow Men were defeated by the Necromancers and the Cleavers, and the rest were killed by the energy of the portal between them and the Faceless Ones.
Dreylan Scarab and his Revengers' Club produced several dozen Hollow Men at Serpine's castle, which was being used as their base. The base is discovered by Skulduggery and the Hollow Men are killed during an incursion by Sanctuary forces.
Valkyrie stumbled across one of 8 carriages full of Hollow Men who didn't have specific orders on the Invisible Train whilst she was searching for Hansard Kray to get information on where deliveries made on said railroad were shipped to for Tyren Lament. Afraid of being attacked after being trapped while trying to escape, she used the air to throw them away from her, to which they began to attack in turn. They were stopped by Kray before much damage was done, and he mentioned they were more expensive than those normally encountered, with tougher skin.
The Hollow Men briefly appear at the Keep as part of the trap, but The Monster Hunters state that those were the cheapest Hollow Men they have ever seen. The trap was to have General Mantis' forces attack the Hollow Men, destroy them easily, and then turn around to see the Irish troops moving into the valley to block off their exit. This was the beginning of the Battle of the Keep.
The Hollow men in this book didn't appear much - they did make an appearance at the beginning however, along with Davos Rhadaman. They trashed a supermarket, in short. Rhadaman said they were his friends - he had dressed them up in clothes. He was one of the escaped sorcerers whose magic were boosted during The Last Stand of Dead Men in the accelerator.
Hollow Men are made of a strange, paper-like skin. They are inflated with a green gas through the use of pumps, and then magically animated. As gaseous beings, Hollow Men are unfazed by weapons without out sharp sides and ends and/or bullets. However, their hands and feet are solid and heavy, forcing them to walk with a stoop and making them dangerous in battle. Hollow Men are easily torn allowing the gases to escape and they quickly deflate. Another weakness is their skin and their internal gases are flammable, allowing skilled Elementals to take out scores of them with a few fireballs. The improved models in Kingdom Of The Wicked were said to have skin so tough nothing short of a chainsaw could get through them.