Are You Ready To Book A Room? Reviewing Kid Lobotomy #2 By Peter Milligan, Tess Fowler And Black Crown

by Oliver MacNamee

With its literary references very clearly labelled (Kafka, King Lear and Douglas Coupland), the reader is more able to sit back and soak up the weirdness that is The Suites Hotel, managed by Kid Lobotomy. As artist-in-residence, Brigit Spooner takes up her place in the weirdest hotel this side of…well, anywhere, really. Oh, and there’s the small matter of a dying Kid Lobotomy to take care of too, as he seems to lie bleeding out from the cut throat he received at the end of last issue. All in a normal day’s developments at The Suites.

The hotel continues to be explored and there’s some marvellous, malevolent imagery and page layouts courtesy of Tess Fowler that will keep you off balance–quite literally–and in a similar state of perplexity that I imagine many of the guests will feel themselves. The hotel itself is clearly a living, breathing entity unto itself and I look forward to how writer Peter Milligan and Fowler explore its depths as the series develops, while elements of it’s dark past come to the fore whenever a new door and a different room are entered. It’s a hotel with as many dark secrets as The Dakota Hotel, which was used for both Rosemary’s Baby and Ghostbusters and, no doubt, is one of the many inspirations for this edifice, along with the kind of hotels I dare say Milligan himself has stayed in over the years.

The plot plods along nicely, with the matter of Kid Lobotomy’s fatal wound being addressed in a manner surreal enough that the reader can easily digest it because of the setting and Rosebud’s attempts to usurp her younger brother’s rights to The Suites bubbling up all the while. But this is a comic that revels in its weird characters and imagery. In introducing not only Brigit but also one-hit wonder, novelist Adam Mee, it all has something of an episodic quality to it, too. Will the third issue also reveal new guests I wonder? And, if so, will they all get out alive, or at least mentally intact?

So far it’s been a fun, freaky ride, but not as opaque as one would imagine for a series so steeped in such varied and diverse literary conceits, all underpinning some of the narrative. Are you ready to book a room yet?

Kid Lobotomy #2 is out from Black Crown/IDW in shops now.