reflection

A satisfying finale that opens up the universe of this mini-series to immense possibilities.
Writing/Plot
Pencils/Inks
Colors
Lettering
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Review: THE DOLLHOUSE FAMILY #6: At Long Last, A Gory Renovation

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Creative duo M.R. Carey and Peter Gross (Lucifer, The Unwritten), along with artist Vince Locke ( Sandman, Books of Magic) return to finish their mysterious horror mini-series in “The Dollhouse Family” #6. The finale mixes this comic’s unique blend of haunted house, demonic, and cosmic horror into a satisfying end that manages to offer still more world-building – and the potential for more stories from this universe in the future.

“Nobody leaves the Dollhouse. All will be weighed. Only one can prevail.”

Writing & Plot

Writer M.R. Carey‘s seamless construction of complex yet near-effortless plots continues into the final issue of “The Dollhouse Family.” The tiny hints that have been teased in every issue thus far come forth in inventive manners that add a tremendous amount to the scope of this mini-series. This seemingly-demon or ghost focused story that danced around with the cosmic launches full-bore into the latter with wildly inventive revelations. The final conflict feels personal and satisfying to watch as Alice and her family work to overcome the entity that has been haunting her since childhood. This issue formally introduces a new ally into the fold that becomes the vehicle for most of the major revelations by offering explanations as to the gravity of the conflict the Dealy family finds itself in. A mistake often made in 6-issue mini-series such as this is to attempt to more story than the frame can hold. Carey impressively manages to dodge this in a final issue that, while slightly more exposition-heavy and faster-paced, offers a carefully constructed end to this finely tuned tale.

Art Direction

Peter Gross‘ layouts and Vince Locke‘s pencils close out “The Dollhouse Family” with their consistently unique visual touch. Gross’ layouts consistently provide the visual flow to carry the reader through Carey’s suspenseful script, often defying conventional panel construction in the process. Vince Locke’s a bit off-the-wall art style, which has always been a perfect look for this series, reaches a gory peak with this final fight. The often haunting visuals provided thus far climax into creations of fleshy demonic terror. Much of the atmosphere comes from the grim life Cris Peter’s colors give the pages. The color choice here crafts not only the eerie horror atmosphere of the slower moments but also the gory shock of the unfathomable monstrosities the Dealy family have to face off against. Horror, like most great comic genres, live and die on their visual integrity, so it’s fortunate “The Dollhouse Family” has had such a stellar art team to see it through.

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This final issue of “The Dollhouse Family” brings about a fascinating and satisfying end to this unique horror mini-series. M.R. Carey’s script brings events to a tight close while opening the possibilities of this universe up to a potential future. The visual touches of Peter Gross, Vince Locke and Cris Peter collide to deliver one last cosmic and gory horror experience that is perfectly unique for this story. Be sure to catch the finale of this excellent series when it hits stands on 5/20!

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Justin Munday
Reader and hoarder of comics. Quietly sipping coffee, reading, and watching sci-fi in Knoxville, TN.