The wait is finally over! I can finally talk a bit about Locke & Key with you all :). Locke & Key has been one of my favorite graphic series to date. In conversations with many who are new to comics, it’s rare when I don’t immediately recommend it as a first to read on their upcoming illustrative journeys. Because at the heart of it all comics are a journey for us all, and Locke & Key is one of the greatest (IMO)! Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez have given me hours of amazing storytelling from this series, and Netflix’s adaptation pays homage to the creators through and through. Before I give you my full-on Non-Spoiler Review check out the trailer above and synopsis below…
After their father is murdered under mysterious circumstances, the three Locke siblings and their mother move into their ancestral home, Keyhouse, which they discover is full of magical keys that may be connected to their father’s death. As the Locke children explore the different keys and their unique powers, a mysterious demon awakens — and will stop at nothing to steal them. From Carlton Cuse (Lost, Bates Motel) and Meredith Averill (The Haunting of Hill House), the series is a coming-of-age mystery about love, loss, and the unshakable bonds that define family.
Locke and Key on Netflix is the long awaited television adaptation of the best-selling comic book series by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez for IDW comics.
First and foremost this is not a page by page remake of the graphic novel. A true adaptation of its inspiration and pulls various elements and story points for the series. Does it have a family mourning the loss of their father, a dark antagonist lurking in the shadows, magic keys? That’s a yes! If you have read the original series you will immediately notice the changes in direction the story takes and its not a bad thing. With Joe Hill’s guidance, a new interpretation of the story we know is being told. The core elements are there. The suspenseful atmosphere within the scenes and growing mystery after each episode keeps you enthralled. And will quickly gain the interest of viewers who are not familiar with the books as well as the veterans.
Some of the positives on the story are its pacing, it wastes no time in showing you exactly the direction it is taking, without making it feel rushed to tell you everything going on. The chemistry between the cast is solid in the family dynamic and the progression of each character feels organic. Things I worried about was their handling of the keys. If you know from the books the magic is pretty heavy and to CGI a lot of the abilities could be a hit or miss. But I will say the creative workarounds they did take were done very well and relatable. If you saw in the sneak peeks and trailers the “Head Key” in itself could have been a challenge. Without spoiling anything, the user can literally see inside their own head. They can add knowledge, look through old memories, thoughts, and more. And the image you see here is how the comic portrayed the power. But to do that in a live-action show could have been a huge misstep. One of the few things that can be a win or loss for a series is how they choose to show the powers of these keys and I think they nailed it with the show. A doorway appears with a duplicate guide of the keyholder. They can literally walk into their minds, it’s simple, yet effective.
My only cons to this all is I myself was hoping for a darker much gorier visual story. The comic held nothing back in violence or real-life addictions. The original is essentially a horror story the magic of the keys gave it a lighter fun side to what is essentially a dark tale. But I understand the reasoning behind toning it down for a larger audience to enjoy. Not to say the show does everything PG, you will definitely see some moments. As of now as well I’m hoping the story continues to flesh out the characters the way the comic did as well.
Besides that, I enjoyed the show. Great pacing, good storytelling, CGI was done well. And the expectation we can see more of the story keeps me excited. I highly recommend the series to watch. To rate Season One, I Nerdify Certify Locke & Key with a 4 Stars! I hope this review makes you excited for the show’s premiere on February 7th. Feel free to let us know what you think below. And keep an eye out on the site for our intro videos to the Keys of Keyhouse :). And as always Stay Nerdy my friends!