Wednesday, March 11, 2020

The Dollhouse Family #5 Review


Writer: M.R. Carey

Layouts: Peter Gross
Finishes: Vince Locke
Colors: Cris Peter
Letters: Todd Klein
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: March 11th, 2020

The Dollhouse Family is almost over and that makes me sad because I've loved this miniseries. As we come to the home stretch, Alice's daughter Una has been fooled by Jenny and the Dollhouse to give Alice her leg back and live in the Dollhouse forever herself. Now Alice and Una's father Jake has to figure out how to get her back. To read my reviews of all of this series, click on The Dollhouse Family label.

We start the issue with Alice trying to report Una missing, for more than the first time apparently. The police seem to be frustrated with her because there is no footage or evidence that Una even left the apartment. It sounds kind of strange that the police wouldn't go through that apartment and tear it apart looking for a body. Maybe it's because this takes place 15 years ago (a lot has changed since then), or maybe it's just because this is a comic book. Alice leaves and joins Jake outside in the car. Alice even admits that her story sounds like bullshit because it is; she can't tell the police that her daughter is trapped in some magical Dollhouse that just appears out of nowhere to haunt and consume her family. It makes even the fact that she was an amputee seem like a lie for attention, as far as the cops are concerned. She tells Jake that she's going into the Dollhouse to get her daughter. "I'm not going in blind. That thing's got history. The more I know about it the better I can fight it."

Then we see a bit more of the Dollhouse's history. First, it's Cordwainer as an old man in 1865 accepting the invitation to come inside and live there forever. Followed by the rest of the Dollhouse Family, all descendants of Joseph Kent, not as we know them but old and dying, also accepting the Dollhouse's offer.

With a little online investigation, Alice finds out more about the lives of the Dollhouse Family before they disappeared into it. It turns out that Bess is actually Cordwainer's daughter. This made me scratch my head because Peggy-O said none of them knew each other before the Dollhouse, but then I remembered she wasn't wrong because Cordwainer pretty much ignored his kids before his wife took them and left him. James was an opium addict, Daniel was a gay priest, and Peggy-O was legally declared dead in 1979 on the day that the Dollhouse first appeared at Alice's house.

She tells Jake that she's going to the Kent house where Cordwainer disappeared in 1865, and she's going alone. Once she's inside she starts snooping around the old abandoned and deteriorating building. She goes upstairs and ends up knocking a bowl at the top all the way down the stairs, and when she looks back the building is just like it used to be. Lights and furniture and even people. She sees the birth of Cordwainer, the death of Charlotte, and witnesses the doctor handing the placenta to the maid as he tells her to burn it in the furnace. Alice goes to follow the nurse downstairs and suddenly there's a flashlight on her. The building is back to its current state, and she's been busted by the police.

But after a short time being locked up, she's released by a lawyer. It turns out the property is hers anyway because she's the last living descendant of Joseph Kent. She's given a key to Joseph Kent's safety deposit box at the bank, and she goes there to check it out. There's a bunch of cool things in there, like a gun and some stones, but the most important thing is his journal. And she reads the final entry about using the sailing gear metal to try and kill Cloax.

She goes to the bar, has a few shots of whiskey, and breaks back into the Kent house. She kicks the bowl again to bring history back to life, and she continues to follow the maid. The maid puts the bowl down, opens the furnace door, and when she turns around the placenta is gone with a trail leading off behind a group of barrels. They both go over to investigate aaaaaaaand...

Bits and Pieces

This is another very good issue from this great overall story, although I did want more from it since we only have one issue left. We finally get to see who the Dollhouse Family is and why they're there, Alice decides to take on the house rather than the Dollhouse, and that last two pages were just a big "WTF, are you serious?" I don't know how this all can possibly wrap up with just one more installment, but I'm really looking forward to it.


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