Volume 5 of Locke and Key entitled Clockworks is another fantastic entry into the long running series of mini-series detailing the lives of the Locke family and the demon trying to escape Keyhouse, the mansion where they live. The book takes place mainly in the past told through flashbacks (of a sort) and it works really, really well.
Written deftly by Joe Hill, he moves the continuing story forward while looking back at the past. We meet many of the Locke family’s descendents and how Keyhouse came to be. The only mystery we are not privy to is how the door to a different dimension came to be in the first place. Perhaps he is saving the story for a different time.
The most important part of the book is where we get to find out about the Locke children’s dad Rendell and what happened to him and his friends in their dealings with the keys. And finally we get to see just how and why it was that the demon became trapped in the house, how it came about and just what its motivations are.
Gabriel Rodriguez turns out some pretty amazing art and is just as fantastic a storyteller as Joe Hill is and it is hard to imagine the book without one or the other not being on it. Hill’s story is incomparable to anything else on the racks today and really stands apart as a book perfect for the medium. The artwork is so refreshing as he is like no other artist today. He reminds one of Frank Quitely in a way as he makes everything seem new. And Rodriguez’s art just keeps getting better which is utterly fascinating.
Hill weaves a masterful tale. He proves that you can write an unordinary tale and have it be just as interesting as any book being published by the big guys. Few books can come close to just how great this story is, only Saga and Fatale coming close but both being so different it is like comparing math and English. It would be amazing to see what he could do with characters from the Big Two like the Avengers or Batman. Right now Hill is writing the finale to his epic and it will be a sad day when it ends, but it will most likely end as well as it began.
If you haven’t read the first four volumes – do so. IDW keeps them all in print and is one of their top books so go out and buy them, including this one and do yourself a favour. It will be one of the best decisions you ever made.
5 out of 5