James Tynion IV is hot. Not only has he managed to bring a fresh look to Batman, introducing new characters and sending speculators into overdrive, he is also behind Something Is Killing The Children, arguably the hottest indie book of recent years. Tynion’s leanings towards horror are obvious from his writing, and it seems that DC is also banking on him, by letting him play to his strengths with a new 12-issue Black Label series, The Nice House On The Lake.
Alvaro Martinez Bueno and Jordie Bellaire are the other members of the creative team bringing the book to life. Black Label books are DC’s more mature books, and it is interesting that they are using this label for the series. Other Black Label titles have been Batman Damned and Superman: Year One, so it’s safe to say this run may be a darker, more disturbing story than the company usually runs.
The story has a familiar premise. A group of people has all been invited to spend time at a lake house. The invites have come from Walter, and he knows each of them from different points in their lives. Some remember him from college, others from more recent social gatherings, but when they all arrive, it seems that Walter is not who they thought he was, and with the world falling into chaos, it seems Walter has plans of his own.
The tone of the story is peppered with the real-life Coronavirus trappings of our own, although it is never mentioned as such in the book. The friends that arrive there are looking for a well-earned holiday, after the year that they have just had. A recent interview in The Hollywood Reporter gives us some clues to the underlying subtext of the book, with Tynion explaining that as we get older, our friendships often fracture and disperse. The idea of reconnecting with each other seems to be one of the drives for the guests, but at what cost?
The book will hit the shelves in June and is aimed at a 17-years-plus age group, at a price of $3.99. If previous work is anything to go by, this could be an exciting and horrifying book that might be the sleeper hit of the Summer for DC — and not a crossover in sight.