House of Whispers #13 – Nalo Hopkinson, Dan Watters, Writers; Matthew Dow Smith, Artist; Zac Atkinson, Colorist
Ray – 8/10
Ray: House of Whispers is a challenge to read at times, because its central plot isn’t always clear and it’s always juggling multiple concepts – and then will freely abandon them to chase an intriguing side story like it does in House of Whispers #13, a bridge issue after the first year.
The issue opens with Erzulie and her husband Ogun mourning the death of their husband Agwe (poly representation in a DC book, whoo!). Erzulie wants to plant a tree to honor him, but the soil isn’t suitable, so they head into the human world and take on human identities in the bodies of two of their worshippers. By chance or design, this puts them in the house next to Djuna, a lonely woman who is dealing with an abusive thief of a husband and a desire for something more in her life. She’s willing to settle for muffins for now, but when she finds only one solitary egg in her refrigerator, a bizarre and horrific adventure begins as her anger takes physical form.
When she tries to crack the egg, it doesn’t release a yolk and white but a mysterious shriveled chick that bites her. When it ingests some of Djuna’s hot pepper sauce, it takes an even weirder turn when the creature turns into a carnivorous, neon rooster that breathes fire.
All the while, Djuna’s very strange day intersects with the mourning Gods next door in an issue that has a lot on its mind but isn’t in a hurry to explain to us exactly what it all means. Djuna isn’t a character who I expect to see again in any major way, but she represents the way the Gods of this book intersect with humans every day and the way the strange and impossible can be exactly what someone needs to give the push they need to take a major step. Matthew Dow Smith does a good job filling in for Domo Stanton, with well-drawn characters and compelling monsters. It’s another solid issue in the most ambitious book in this line.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.