For a beat or two, Keys to the Kingdom might convince readers that Locke and Key is becoming a typical, ongoing comic series. By which I mean, the story could continue indefinitely, allowing Joe Hill, Gabriel Rodriguez, and the Locke children to live in the book’s premise for as long as sales or Hill’s interest allowed.
But believing anything about Locke and Key is typical would be a mistake.
For this year’s Locke and Key re-read, I decided to jump into Vol. 3, Crown of Shadows, without re-reading Vol. 1 and Vol. 2. I expected to spend some time remembering details and getting back up to speed, but was instead surprised by how effortlessly I fell back into the story of the Locke family and the horrible, magical world that surrounds them.
It’s time to continue Matt Reads Comics‘s October tradition: Re-reading the next volume of Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez’s Locke and Key! A series that, at this pace, will take us only six years to finish.
The best horror comics create a feeling of anticipation. A slow, building sense of unease that you know will eventually amount to something terrible. In the next panel, on the next page, the BAD THING is going to happen. And when it does, it will be horrific, but also cathartic. You’ll finally be released from your feeling of dread. You’ll be able to stop turning the pages, imagining what is about to happen, because there will be a settled conclusion. Horror done is less horrific than horror still to come.
The wolf is all around you. He is in the mountains and in the lake and everywhere. But he is not HERE yet.
In honor of the season, let’s step away from superheroes and journey to a house where murder, magic, and mind games wait behind each locked door. Welcome to Keyhouse. Welcome to Lovecraft. Hope you survive the experience.