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"Hotell #4" Comic Review

Written by James Ferguson

Published by AWA Studios

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Written by John Lees
Illustrated by Dalibor Talajic
Colored by Lee Loughridge
Lettered by Sal Cipriano
2020, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on August 19th, 2020

Review:

We already knew the Pierrot Courts Hotel was home to all kinds of horrors, but what about literal demons. This mysterious place off the beaten path seems like a great place to hold an exorcism, right? A desperate father looking to help his sick son has ended up in a hotel room with an equally desperate priest. Both are ready to do anything they can to help the boy.

As with the rest of the series, Hotell #4 serves as a standalone tale with some ties to what came before it to create a unique reading experience. This one feels a little off though, as the end is just...odd. The first half is a solid albeit straightforward exorcism story. Writer John Lees fills it with mystery, as we are unsure if this kid is really possessed or if this priest is just deranged. Where things go off the rails is the deus ex machina ending. I've read through this a couple times and it's pretty strange, although still rather chilling.

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Artist Dalibor Talajic is a big part of that. No punches are pulled as this foreign entity wreaks all kinds of havoc. This thing literally and figuratively draws the entire series to a close, wrapping up every plot thread. What's really striking are the unsettling details in this being. You can see every wrinkle in it, giving it a ghostly visage.

While this creature doesn't speak, there's another monster that has quite a dark voice in Hotell #4. Letterer Sal Cipriano does a brilliant job with this, emphasizing the otherworldly qualities and the pure horror of it.

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Click image to enlarge

Colorist Lee Loughridge controls the tone of Hotell #4 with pitch perfect precision. It starts out quiet with greys and blues, matching up with the cool of the evening and certainly the calm before the storm. This changes as the sun comes up, casting a harsh yellow light on everything and ratcheting up the tension and excitement. This goes hand-in-hand with the terror that hits a breaking point in the final pages.

Hotell stands strong as four separate yet connected tales. This final issue ties them all together, but does so in a strange and unclear fashion that doesn’t quite click. There are still some open questions about what this hotel really is and what's behind it all (with more questions popping up in this chapter too), so I would love to see more tales at this location. At the very least, it will have you thinking twice before taking your next road trip.

Grades:

Story: threeandahalfstars Cover
Buy from Amazon US
Cover
Buy from Amazon UK
Art: fourandahalfstars
Overall: 4 Star Rating

About The Author
James Ferguson
Lord of the Funny Books
James has a 2nd grade reading level and, as a result, only reads books with pictures. Horror is his 5th favorite genre right after romantic comedy and just before silent films. No one knows why he's here, but he won't leave.
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