Review – Hotell Volume 2 #2 (AWA Studios)

Publisher: AWA Studios – Upshot
Writer: John Lees
Artist: Dalibor Talajić
Colours: Lee Loughridge
Release Date: 12th January2022

It’s Lucy’s big night, the night when she is to become a member of the Roaring 66. But when the decisive moment arrives and Lucy stares into the eyes of death, she turns and runs. Seeking shelter from the vengeance of her former friends, where else could she go but the Pierrot Courts Hotel?

Okay, let me skip the part where I eulogise about how great this creative team is (and to be clear, they are a great team), but I think that I’ve reached saturation point with the plaudits where I run the risk of sounding like a starstruck fanboy.

That being said, this isn’t my favourite issue of the series. It’s good, there’s no denying that, but it just doesn’t thrill me like previous issues have. I feel horribly disloyal saying this by the way, and I will properly flagellate myself later for the offence (which may well be horror enough for you dear reader), but I think I’m maybe a little spoiled. There has been so much great output not just from John Lees, but from everyone involved in this series over the years (on this and other projects) that I have gotten used to expecting Earth shattering publications on my doorstep every month.

Where this just fell short for me was purely that I didn’t care about Lucy. For me, she just felt a little middle of the road, a wannabe that wasn’t bad enough, but not remorseful enough to warrant sympathy, and in the end I didn’t feel strongly enough either way about her to care whether Pierrot devoured her soul or not. That’s a new experience for me with one of John Less’ characters, and it just took me out of the usual feeling of claustrophobic, creeping, horror that Hotell usually leaves me with.

Jack’s monologue on the other hand was brilliant. He appears to be becoming more unhinged, albeit still quite subtly at this point, but you can still see the cracks getting wider each issue. I find the mental/emotional decline of Jack quite fascinating to watch, and it gives a good guide to the disposition of Pierrot.

The artwork is still top notch, I have no complaints there whatsoever, and there are some nice little “did I just see that?” moments that make you look back at the previous panel which worked really well.

This is a great series from a great team, and even when I don’t personally think it’s at the top of its game, it’s still right near the top of my must read comics list.

Rating: 4/5.


The writer of this piece was: Mark Scott
Mark Tweets from @macoy_comicgeek ‏

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