The Black House
MJ Hahn’s latest podcast concerns itself with, “something truly horrifying–the real estate market in San Francisco.” So begins his tale, and if you liked the 14-episode spectacle, Yuki O’Malley and the Bellefaire as much as I did, you can certainly count on this short piece to deliver the same bizarre hybrid of whimsical and macabre tones.
None of the characters from Yuki O’Malley appear in this short story, but modern-day San Francisco persists as a character in Hahn’s work.
Hahn has a way with villains, and he exploits this talent in The Black House, offering a main character who can hardly be described as a protagonist. We hate and care for Cindy, a snotty, social-ladder climbing, greedy, manipulative bitch. But, oh, she is such a wonderful bitch that I cannot help but love her while the story careens toward her seemingly inevitable and well-deserved demise.
And the story has a monster of sorts! Though you may have trouble deciding whether to root for Cindy or the mysterious thorn in her side, you will have no trouble recognizing the monster once his identity is revealed–a delightful only-in-San-Francisco surprise ending.