“The Dolridge Sacrament” is a strange enough sounding title for a comic book. It is at once a little spooky and a little nerdy. That’s worked out pretty great for Stephen King, right? The more I looked, the more I wanted to look further. Alterna Comics has a decidedly offbeat vision and this comic fits right in.
Written by Wilson Taylor, and illustrated by Maia Gröss, “The Dolridge Sacrament” has a nice Stephen King, byway of Stanley Kubrik, vibe to it. The Dolridge House is straight out of “The Shining,” and in a good way. We find ourselves in a place we’d never set foot in if we hadn’t somehow been forced in. No one is safe. No one can leave. Of course, we assume, there must ultimately be a way out and so we’re hooked.
This is Dolridge House, somewhere in the woods of Maine, circa 1972. Father Dolridge heads the house, which is now a bed and breakfast of sorts. There are a number of residents, but they’re not tourists. There’s Stephen, for instance, anxious to leave. There’s Delores, resigned to stay.
The contrast between the spooky material and the light, almost fun, artwork, is jarring but intriguing. It actually works quite well as a nice way to balance things out. Like manga, for instance, the backgrounds can get pretty detailed, when needed, while the characters maintain a simple and cartoony look. It all adds up to a clean, weird and satisfying tone.
The deeper you dig into this comic, the more you see how this is good intelligent horror. It is this sort of offbeat and brainy horror that will give you some good nightmares. In the last couple of issues, we got quite a look into the macabre world of Dolridge where everyone is led like puppets by one puppet master. Even Father Dolridge is not really in charge. Maybe least of all him. Isn’t he actually in closet contact to…it? In this latest issue, we find the good father, by all counts, just an innocent bystander but closer examination would argue otherwise.
This is a very satisfying work of horror. You can definitely get something out of each individual issue as each chapter doles out another spooky Dolridge treat.
“The Dolridge Sacrament” is available now in digital issues for only $1.99. Visit our friends at Alterna Comics here.