“The Nice House On The Lake” – Book Four
Writer: James Tynion IV
Artist: Álvaro Martínez Bueno
Color Artist: Jordie Bellaire
Letterer: AndWorld Design
Reviewed by Steve J. Ray
Opening The Nice House On The Lake #4 evoked the same emotional response in me as getting woken up in the middle of the night after hearing a noise downstairs. You know you have to check it out, and while half of you is fully aware that nothing’s going to hurt you and you just need to do it, the other half of your psyche is screaming “NO… RUN!”
Last month I stated my admiration for the creative team, because of all the questions this comic book raises. The latest chapter asks a deeper one, still. I’ve always been one to err on the side of caution, and am definitely a “Be careful what you wish for” kind of person, but the world that James Tynion and his colleagues are presenting in these pages twists that notion so far on its head that it induces vertigo.
The ending to the issue is razor-sharp and delivers a killer cliffhanger to beat all killer cliffhangers. To say I’m dying to read more would be a colossal understatement, so I can only imagine how the characters in the story feel about it.
The perfect marriage of writing, line art, colors, and lettering continues in this; arguably the most collaborative comic on the shelves. Álvaro Martínez Bueno has been one of my favorite artists for over half a decade now, as his art has always been consistently excellent. The Nice House On The Lake is (to my knowledge) the only book he’s inked himself, and the results are mind-blowing. This man is a consummate storyteller, as his characters’ faces and body language convey so much emotion and tension. His backgrounds are simply astonishing too.
This isn’t a superhero book; full of action and explosions to keep a reader’s interest. No, it’s something far more primal. The visuals in this title are so compelling and well-realized, that I don’t think that even a cinematic or televisual adaptation could ever do it real justice. Jordie Bellaire’s color work is amongst the best of their (stellar) career, and the way that several pages are made up of AndWorld’s lettering is so original, and so innovative, that I frequently find myself lost for words.
Every issue of this title has been perfect, but The Nice House on The Lake #4 is so excellent that it needs a new scoring system. Anyone who wants stories about people, readers who are fascinated by the human condition, fans of drama, psychology, horror, comic books, and everything in between, needs to read this series.
In years to come, this book will be spoken about in the same conversations as Watchmen, V For Vendetta, and Sandman. This is one of those stories that will never die.
Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment