Out of 5
FORMAT: HARDCOVER + DIGITAL (REVIEWED) | RELEASE DATE: SEPTEMBER 8TH
The premiere release for DC’s Hill House subdivision, comes the complete Basketful of Heads. Fresh from the mind of Joe Hill (best known for his Locke & Key, and numerous, all excellent, prose work), it’s the perfect showcase for DC’s horror bona fides. Fans of both Hill and comic book horror will not be disappointed.
This tale of small-town terror follows heroine June Branch as she investigates the disappearance of her boyfriend, hunting down an elusive serial killer with only an axe for protection and an ever-growing basketful of (very vocal!) heads for company. It’s worth powering through the book’s slow build, as once it gets started, the action rarely lets up. Hill puts poor June through the wringer, emotionally and physically (if this were a movie, it’d be a Sam Raimi one) in a story which is both harrowing and hilarious.
The art by Leomacs is stupendous, especially in the book’s character work and world-building. It’s sumptuously illustrated; atmospheric and packed full of cinematic action sequences. Dave Stewart handles the colours, and does a magnificent job in jumping from hot, sticky summer days to dark nights and gloomy rainstorms. This is one of the best-looking horror comics in years, with the entire creative team (including the evocative lettering of Deron Bennett, and covers by Reiko Murakami) firing on all cylinders.
As an introduction to Hill House, Basketful of Heads absolutely smashes its doors in – an instant all-timer, and one of Joe Hill’s best stories to date.