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Hill House: Your Guide To DC's New Horror Imprint

Hill House: Your Guide To DC’s New Horror Imprint

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DC Comics has recently announced a partnership with horror writer Joe Hill, which will see Joe Hill curate his own line of comics. This “pop-up imprint”, aptly named Hill House, will have a horror focus and bring together a group of talented creators for five new limited series, each of which sounds creepier than the next.

Find out everything you need to know about Hill House in this guide. It includes details about the comics involved, how it has been curated and much more.

How Is Joe Hill Involved In This?

Joe Hill is no stranger to horror. He is an accomplished writer of novels, such as NOS4A2, as well the critically acclaimed comic book series Locke & Key which he did with artist Gabriel Rodríguez. He’s also the son of the most famous horror writer of all, Steven King, so it’s clear that horror runs through his veins.

So it would make sense for DC to team up with him to curate a “pop-up imprint” of horror comics. As part of this, he has helped shape the line by picking the creators involved and will be writing some of the comic books himself.

What Comics Are Part Of This Imprint?

Take a look below to find out which comics are part of the Hill House imprint.

Basketful of Heads #1 (of 6) cover by Reiko Murakami.
Basketful of Heads #1 (of 7) cover by Reiko Murakami.

Basketful of Heads

Written by Joe Hill. Art by Leomacs.
Series start date: October 30th.

Basketful of Heads tells the story of June Branch, who is trapped in a room with four criminals. Her partner is missing and she must fight for her life with the help of an 8th-century Viking axe which can cleanly slice through a neck with a single swipe. The weirder thing about this axe is that the severed heads are still alive.

Each of the heads has a story to tell, but June really believe what they are saying?

Italian artist Leomacs is no stranger to horror, stating in the announcement for this series “Horror works when the readers are scared for the characters and for themselves. The artist, I think, needs to find that face, that pose, that set up that conveys the horror in a way that touches a nerve.”

The Dollhouse Family #1 cover by Jessica Dalva.
The Dollhouse Family #1 cover by Jessica Dalva.

The Dollhouse Family

Written by Mike Carey. Art by Peter Gross.
Series start date: November 13th.

This series revolves around Alice and a 19-century dollhouse that she was gifted when she was gifted on her sixth birthday. The dollhouse, which is accompanied by a family of antique dolls, becomes her favourite thing in her life and she soon learns that she can enter the house and spend time with the family who lives there.

As she gets older she uses the dollhouse as a way to escape her adult life, especially when the world gets too hard. But she soon finds out that this refuge from the outside world has a sinister price…

Mike Carey and Peter Gross have had a long collaborative career together, working on classic Vertigo series such as Sandman spin-off Lucifer and The Unwritten.

The Low, Low Woods #1 cover by J.A.W. Cooper.
The Low, Low Woods #1 cover by J.A.W. Cooper.

The Low, Low Woods

Written by Carmen Maria Machado. Art by Dani.
Series start date: December 18th.

Described as a “coming-of-age body-horror”, The Low, Low Woods is set in a small Pennsylvanian mining town that is inflicted by a mysterious plague. But this is no ordinary plague. It strikes at random, and those who suffer from it begin to lose the memory. That’s just scratching the surface, with a string of other weird occurrences also happening in the town.

The series follows two teenage women who are trying to figure out the truth of the plague and everything else that’s going on in their town. But will they like what they discover?

Carmen Maria Machado makes her comics debut with this series but is no stranger to horror and fantasy. Her collection of short stories ‘Her Body and Other Parties’ has won a number of awards including the Shirley Jackson Award.

Artist Dani is no stranger to weird either, with her most recent work Coffin Bound which mixes pulp and gothic styles.

Daphne Byrne #1 cover by Piotr Jaboski.
Daphne Byrne #1 cover by Piotr Jaboski.

Daphne Byrne

Written by Laura Marks. Art by Kelley Jones.
Series start date: January 2020.

Set in late 19th-century New York, this new series focuses on 14-year-old Daphne who hasn’t had an easy life. Her father has recently died and left her with a grief-stricken mother. In her mother’s desperation, she has fallen victim to occultists who promise they can contact her dead husband.

While this is all happening, Daphne beings to feel an insidious presence inside her which gives a terrifying power. How will she use this power to wage revenge on those who have ruined her life? You’ll have to read to find out!

Laura Marks is another new-comer to comics and came to the attention of Joe Hill through the Hill’s Locke & Key adaptation at Hulu*.

Kelly Jones is no stranger to horror comics and has been in the industry since 1983. He has worked on comics such as Sandman, Deadman, Swamp Thing, and a supernatural-tinge run on Batman.

*Locke & Key was passed by Hulu but was picked up by Netflix.

Plunge #1 cover by Jeremy Wilson.
Plunge #1 cover by Jeremy Wilson.

Plunge

Written by Joe Hill. Art by Stuart Immonen.
Series start date: February 2020.

In 1983 the world’s most advanced research vessel, the Derleth, in the hunt for oil disappeared on the edge of the Arctic Circle. 40 years later, the Derleth’s distress signal has surfaced again and a US salvage team – with competition from the Russians – goes into investigate.

But finding the wreck is just the beginning. They’ll soon discover all kinds of other horrifying things as they’re trapped by the arctic storm.

When this series was announced Hill described the series as “my chance to riff on one of the greatest horror films of all time, John Carpenter’s The Thing.” If you dig this horror classic then you’ll probably want to keep this series on your radar.

Seadogs

Written by Joe Hill. Art by Dan McDaid.

Back in 1779, the American Navy was in shambles as it struggled to take on the mighty the British fleet. In a desperate attempt to gain the upper hand, the American Navy will smuggle three werewolves onto the British’s flagship to cause havoc. But can they really trust these men?

Seadogs will be a little different from all the other comics in the way that it is published. It will be serialised in the back of all the comics mentioned above, two pages at a time.

Seadogs Reading Order

So you don’t miss out on any of Hill’s Seadogs story, here is the correct reading order based on the available information.

  • Basketful of Heads #1
  • The Dollhouse Family #1
  • Basketful of Heads #2
  • The Dollhouse Family #2
  • The Low, Low Woods #1
  • Basketful of Heads #3
  • Daphne Byrne #1
  • The Dollhouse Family #3
  • The Low, Low Woods #2
  • Basketful of Heads #4

There are more issues to be included so come back soon to find an updated list.

Where Can I Find Hill House Comics?

Hill House comics can be found at all good comics book stores, online stores, eBay, and ComiXology.

Have Your Say!

Which of these comics are you going to read? Let me know in the comments below or via Facebook or Twitter.

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Comments

  • Found at least one error in the Sea Dogs reading order. Basketful of Heads has Chapter 5. Low, Low Woods has Chapter 6.

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