Day #77: Locke & Key (Comics)

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Locke & Key | IDW Publishing

Joe Hill | Gabriel Rodriguez

Synopsis:

[From IDW:] Locke & Key tells of Keyhouse, an unlikely New England mansion, with fantastic doors that transform all who dare to walk through them… and home to a hate-filled and relentless creature that will not rest until it forces open the most terrible door of them all…

My take:

Given that I’m pretty sure Locke & Key was what motivated me to start this blog, I’m a little surprised it’s taken me this long to write about it. Huh!

Together, Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez crafted this wonderful series that, for all its focus on the supernatural, always struck me as being about the consequences of our actions – and taking responsibility for them, lest someone else have to. That’s really what the core motivation for a lot of the action that takes place in Locke and Key seems to stem from.

Hill and Rodriguez don’t shy away from exploring the darker side of people’s nature. In fact, they seem to revel in reminding us that everything happening in Locke and Key happens because of it, with even demons taking second place in the ‘who can hurt others the most’ game. Well, except toward the end. There’s plenty of demon-induced hurting there. Still!

There’s a real sense of development for the characters, not just as a result of their engagement in the overarching story, but because of their own grappling with life after trauma. Kinsey’s story about dealing with her fear and grief in particular stands out to me as a great example of this. Despite the supernatural elements to the story, it feels real.

While Hill creates some wonderfully complex characters for us to follow, and occasionally – but not always – root for, Rodriguez’s amazing art brings it all home in an imaginative, emotive, and plain aesthetically pleasing way.

I can’t heap enough praise on this series; and, considering the awards it’s received, it’s obvious that I’m not the only one. Check it out, if you haven’t already.

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