The meat-and-potatoes of Kate Wagner's McMansion Hell is making extraordinarily hilarious architectural criticism out of utterly mediocre "luxury" homes. Anyone can find hilarity in a tacky monstrosity, but finding the humor in unimaginative status-displays takes real insight and skill.

That said.

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When Wagner takes on an extraordinarily awful McMansion, it quickly becomes apparent that her focus on workaday bougie ugliness is all about the challenge - she plays boss-level because she's just TOO GOOD at the easy stuff.

Which brings me to the latest installment of McMansion Hell: "An Especially Cursed House": a $2.2m, 5,420 sqft 4 bed/4.5 bath house in Colt’s Neck, NJ. The viral listing had attracted plenty of dunks, but Wagner's treatment? ::chef's kiss::

mcmansionhell.com/post/6354353

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The difference between an "eccentric collector" and a "hoarder" is money. This was driven home when William Gibson hipped me to Soane's Museum, a series of knocked-through Victorian houses filled with John Soane's vast, indiscriminate collections.

soane.org/

The current owned of Especially Cursed House makes Soane look like a piker, though. This is Madonna Inn-grade intensity, proof that nothing exceeds like excess.

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I confess I actually secretly quite like the spectacular claustrophobic-Disneyland collection displays. For me, the horror didn't really kick in until we got to the living space.

I mean.

Wow.

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And the real horror (as ever) lurks in the basement. Come for the "exercise room," stay for the art gallery.

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