DC Comics announced a brand new horror pop-up imprint from Joe Hill called Hill House Comics. Given the covers supplied to us by DC Comics, it appears it will live under the DC Black Label.

The imprint will feature five brand new limited, original series and a host of talent that includes Mike Carey, Peter Gross, Kelley Jones, Laura Marks, Joe Hill, Carmen Maria Machado, Leomacs, and Dani.

DC Comics promises the five series are “meant to chill the bones and summon nightmares with smart, subversive narratives and haunting, heart-stopping visuals.”

Hill spoke about how now is the right time to do horror noting that we are in a Golden Age of Horror.

“Anyone who’s paying attention knows we’re in the middle of a new golden age of horror: films like Get Out, Hereditary, It Follows and plain old It have raised the bar higher and higher,” says Hill.

He adds, “Meanwhile, ongoing shows like AMC’s The Terror and Netflix’s Stranger Things have shattered preconceived notions about what’s possible in episodic terror TV. There’s great stuff happening in comics, of course—in a field of unbounded creativity and wacko visionaries, there’s always great stuff happening—but greedy me wants more.”

He continues, “At Hill House Comics we aim to shock the senses and soak the page in red, with new, hooky horror from seasoned old hands and young masters of the field, all set free to share their most disturbing nightmares…for your pleasure! The books are backed by DC’s second-to-none comic book craftsmanship, and we’re working with the very best editors on parole from Arkham Asylum to craft unputdownable tales of menace and madness. I can’t wait to share some fresh scares with comic book readers everywhere. It’s going to be fun.”

He also noted on Twitter how excited he was to get back to doing comics.

The five series include Basketful of Heads, The Dollhouse Family, The Low, Low Woods, Daphne Byrne, and Plunge. Each issue will also feature a backup story written by Joe Hill called “Sea Dogs.” This backup story sees werewolves terrorizing a crew of sailors.

Basketful of Heads

Baskeful of Heads will be written by Joe Hill with art by Leomacs. Covers will be done by Reiko Murakami.

Here’s the official description:

“The rain lashes the grassy dunes of Brody Island, and seagulls scream above the bay. A slender figure in a raincoat carries a large wicker basket, which looks like it might be full of melons…covered by a bloodstained scrap of the American flag.

This is the story of June Branch, a young woman trapped with four cunning criminals who have snatched her boyfriend for deranged reasons of their own. Now she must fight for her life with the help of an impossible 8th-century Viking axe that can pass through a man’s neck in a single swipe—and leave the severed head still conscious and capable of supernatural speech.

Each disembodied head has a malevolent story of its own to tell, and it isn’t long before June finds herself in a desperate struggle to hack through their lies and manipulations…racing to save the man she loves before time runs out.”

The Low, Low Woods

The Low, Low Woods will be written by Carmen Maria Machado with art by Dani. Covers will be done by J.A.W. Cooper.

Here’s the official description:

“A mysterious plague is afflicting the small mining town of Shudder to Think, Pennsylvania. It strikes seemingly at random, eating away at the memories of those suffering from it. From tales of rabbits with human eyes, to deer women who come to the windows of hungry girls at night, this town is one of those places where strange things are always happening. But no one ever seems to question why…

THE LOW, LOW WOODS is a gruesome coming-of-age body-horror mystery series about two teenage women trying to uncover the truth about the mysterious memory-devouring illness affecting them and the people of the small mining town they call home—and the more they discover, the more disturbing the truth becomes.”

The Dollhouse Family

The Dollhouse Family is written by Mike Carey with art by Peter Gross. It features covers by Jessica Dalva.

Here’s the official description:

“On Alice’s sixth birthday, her dying great-aunt sends her the birthday gift she didn’t know she always wanted: a big, beautiful 19th-century dollhouse, complete with a family of antique dolls. In hardly any time at all, the dollhouse isn’t just Alice’s favorite toy…it’s her whole world.

Soon young Alice learns she can enter the house, to visit a new group of friends, straight out of a heartwarming children’s novel: the Dollhouse family. As the years pass, Alice finds herself visiting their world more frequently, slowly losing track of where reality ends and make-believe begins. What starts as play concludes in an eruption of madness and violence.

Childhood ends—but that little house casts a long shadow over Alice’s adult life. When the world becomes too much for her to bear, Alice finds herself returning to the dollhouse and the little folk within. The house can offer her a shelter from all her sorrows…but only if she gives it what it wants, and god help her if she tries to walk away again…”

Daphne Byrne

Daphne Byrne is written by Laura Marks with art by Kelley Jones. It will feature covers by Piotr Jabłoński.

“In the gaslit splendor of late 19th-century New York, rage builds inside 14-year-old Daphne. The sudden death of her father has left her alone with her irresponsible, grief-stricken mother—who becomes easy prey for a group of occultists promising to contact her dead husband.

While fighting to disentangle her mother from these charlatans, Daphne begins to sense a strange, insidious presence in her own body…an entity with unspeakable appetites. And as she learns to wield this brutal, terrifying power, she wages a revenge-fueled crusade against the secret underworld that destroyed her life.”

Plunge

Plunge will be written by Joe Hill. An artist has not yet been announced. However, covers will be done by Jeremy Wilson.

Here’s the official description:

“In 1983 the Derleth disappeared, wiped out in a storm on the edge of the Arctic circle—the world’s most advanced research vessel in the hunt for oil, lost in the aftermath of a tsunami.

Almost 40 years later, the Derleth begins to transmit its distress signal once again, calling in to Alaska’s remote Attu Station from the most forlorn place on earth, a desolate ring island in the icy faraway. A US salvage team made up of experts, scientists, and mercenaries helicopter in just ahead of a storm—and the Russian competition—to find the abandoned wreck hung up on the island shores of the atoll. As a wintry blizzard clamps down, anomalies begin to surface: first the samples of an oil with unlikely properties, and then the sonar readings of a sunken prehistoric civilization just offshore. Still, nothing could prepare the salvage team for the reappearance of the Derleth’s crew from the island cave, no older than they were four decades ago, every one of them struck blind by an inexplicable infection…and yet capable of seeing in new ways, possessed of extraordinary powers and stripped of all but their last vestiges of humanity…”

Sea Dogs

Sea Dogs will be written by Joe Hill. No artist has been announced.

Here’s the official description:

“In 1779 the pathetic American navy is a pile of smoldering wrecks choking the Penobscot River. Imperial Britain has amassed the mightiest fleet the world has ever known, led by the HMS Havoc, a 90-gun second rate that has sunk a forest of French, Spanish and American frigates, sketching a trail of devastation that stretches all the way from St. Kitts to Machias, Maine. The faltering Continental Congress can’t hope to match England’s sea power, and they’re just desperate enough to make a deal with the devil…or even three.

Spymaster Benjamin Tallmadge proposes allowing three lycanthropes to be pressed into British service aboard the Havoc. Three patriotic werewolves might be all it takes to butcher the ship from the inside out and paint the decks red. It’s true, their powers are infernal, their minds are mad and their loyalty can in no way be trusted. And yet what else can a desperate nation do…but let slip the dogs of war?”

The first book, Basketful of Heads, will hit comic book shelves on October 30, 2019.

DC Comics executive editor Mark Doyle commented on why bringing horror back to the forefront is imperative for DC Comics:

“Bringing horror to the forefront of our publishing plan has been a huge initiative for DC and a passion project of mine, but it was always about finding the right time and voice to mastermind it—and there is no one better than Joe Hill.”

Doyle added:

“Joe is a modern master; his ability to blend visceral, high-concept horror with heartfelt characters is what has grabbed the attention (and throats!) of millions of readers. His vision and taste are unparalleled; you can see it in the incredible talent he’s assembled here, and the stories they’re crafting are bringing the next generation of horror to DC.”

DC Comics Publisher Dan DiDio also commented on the importance of horror to DC Comics’ plans:

“We’re so happy to welcome Joe Hill to DC, and to partner with him on this new specialty line of creator-owned horror books. Horror has been such an integral part of DC’s history and it’s a tradition we want to see revitalized. As a lifetime fan of horror, I know fans are going to be so excited when these books hit shelves. I can’t wait.”

DC Editor-in-Chief Bob Harras praised the upcoming imprint:

“Joe Hill’s vision for this new line is incredibly exciting. Bringing in new and well-known creative voices with different backgrounds to tell their thrilling and terrifying tales, mixed with the energy around the horror genre at large—it all makes it a great time to be a fan of DC.”

DC Comics promises Hill House Comics will be featured at San Diego Comic. Joe Hill and Doyle will host a panel with other special guests on Friday, July 19 at 4:15 p.m. in room 6DE.

Are you looking forward to this new horror imprint from Joe Hill? Which book looks most interesting to you?

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About The Author

John F. Trent

John is the Editor here at Bounding Into Comics. He is a massive Washington Capitals fan, lover of history, and likes to dabble in economics and philosophy.

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