REVIEW: ‘Basketful of Heads,’ Issue #6 (of 7)

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Basketful of Heads #6 3

DC Black Label’s horror imprint Hill House Comics has established itself as a place for some unique horror stories that cut across the genre. Now, close to its end, Basketful of Heads #6 is written by Hill, with illustrations by Leomacs, colors by Dave Stewart, and letters by Deron Bennett. Last issue, we saw June being tortured by one of the crooked cops, a stark contrast to the power she wielded in Basketful of Heads #4After listening to the entire plan hatched by the Sheriff’s son Hank to cover up the suicide of a girl his family paid to go away, June tries to make a break. Grabbing her axe and using Hank’s disgust and fear after finding her basket full of heads, she attempted to escape but on the last page we see Hank, with a shotgun, and June, stuck.

As a penultimate issue for the mini-series, Basketful of Heads #6 does a lot of heavy lifting. In it we get to learn more about the possible dirt that Liam recorded on each of the heads in the basket and we get to see June continue as a brutal final girl, done being tortured and all into dishing it back out to find her boyfriend. This issue is as action-packed as it is filled with exposition that finally fleshes out blind spots in the story. Without giving too much away, Hill uses narration and flashbacks to fill in the gaps, which is beautifully represented by Stewart’s color palettes that change based on whether a panel is taking place in the present or the future.

Basketful of Heads #6 is about build-up, but it also provides brutal action sequences from Leomacs that showcase the genre that this horror fantasy is living in. June is a final girl, and she may be one of my favorite ones, but she is also the slasher, exacting vengeance on the men who harm her, and carving her path towards rescuing her boyfriend. While there is a lot of dialogue, Leomacs’ art gives a bigger look into Liam, than Hill’s words do. He’s sexy and completely at the crosshairs of every bad guy June has disposed of so far. But while the flashbacks are wonderfully done June’s badassery is what really gives this issue its power.

Not only does June Branch bounce back from trauma like the world’s strongest rubberband but her ingenuity and determination to cut off her own thumb to save herself from an impending shotgun blast is one of the best moments in comics of the year. Additionally, the three panels that show the aftermath of how she treats her wound is wonderfully powerful. We don’t see her cut of her thumb, the pain on her face, we just know she does it. Then, in treatment, we don’t see her pain, we just see her getting the job done. While June did get electrocuted last issue and she ends this issue in big trouble, the Basketful of Heads team avoids the typical trauma porn that many horror writing featuring a woman lead written by men succumbs to.

Instead, June has power and agency and even when it feels like she’s going to lose it never feels like her pain is being exploited, she can overcome it all, which makes Basketful of Head #6 exciting. Each issue that has ended with June in trouble has seen her rise triumphantly from it, and with one left, I can’t wait to see how this stellar horror series finishes. With Basketful of Head #6, the creative team continues to one-up itself. June is powerful, her circumstance is dire, and the horror is real. Slasher meets the occult meets a powerful final girl and I can’t wait for more.

Basketful of Heads #6 is available wherever comic books are sold now.

Basketful of Heads #6
5

TL;DR

With Basketful of Head #6, the creative team continues to one-up itself. June is powerful, her circumstance is dire, and the horror is real. Slasher meets the occult meets a powerful final girl and I can’t wait for more.