“The Nice House On The Lake” – Book Eight
Writer: James Tynion IV
Artist: Álvaro Martínez Bueno
Color Artist: Jordie Bellaire
Letterer: AndWorld Design
Reviewed by Steve J. Ray
The Nice House On The Lake #8 continues to show us the lives of the housemates after Walter moved back in. Seeing everyone working in harmony, their memories of the world ended now wiped, tensions in the house actually seem to be growing. The dynamic between the survivors has changed, and even though we now know that some of his friends have known what Walter had been planning since the beginning, the fact that he can alter their memories hasn’t been lost on any of them.
The way that James Tynion can write something as simple and commonplace as feeling like an outsider more isolating and terrifying than it already is, is pure genius. At some point or another, we’ve all felt like we don’t belong, or that others are more loved or wanted than we are. Seeing it happen to the best, the brightest, and the most beautiful in this messed up world that’s been turned upside down, makes this horrific fantasy feel all the more real.
That’s one of the greatest aspects of this entire series, the way that the writing and the art feel so down-to-earth and real, even though this whole chain of events, and the planet that the survivors have inherited, is just about as messed up and wrong as anything could ever be.
The art by Álvaro Martínez Bueno and Jordie Bellaire just highlights all of it. The art is this book is simply phenomenal and makes the commonplace horrific by bringing the most terrifying of possible scenarios into what should be the safest place of all… home. Page 15 showcases some of the best storytelling I’ve ever seen in a comic. The way the camera pans away from Ryan, just as Walter and all the other housemates walk away from her, is unnerving, spine-chilling, and incredibly effective. Truly beautiful work from everyone involved.
Even the way Deron Bennett’s letters blow up whenever Walter’s ire is raised is a joy to behold.
I’m scratching my head month after month to find something to complain about with this series. It makes me queasy, leaves me nervous, and has my mind racing long after I’ve put down my tablet, or the physical comic. The thing is, I’m meant to feel this way, this is what this talented group of creators is actually aiming for… and they’re damn good at their jobs!
The way The Nice House On The Lake #8 ends sent shivers down my spine.
No, these are negative feelings generated by a series that I feel nothing but positive about.
I read and then buy every issue and I recommend this series to anyone and everyone I meet. The Nice House On The Lake isn’t just a great horror story, it’s a solid example of just what the medium of comics can accomplish. This is as good a story as you’ll ever read anywhere, in prose, script, or any other medium. This is one of the finest works of the imagination I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading and every chapter leaves me wanting more.
Images Courtesy of DC Entertainment