Oni Press 2016
Written by Adam Glass & Michael Benson
Illustrated by Harwinder Singh
Coloured by Gonzalo Duarte
Lettered by Melanie Ujimori
Drew, shocked to discover he was successful in creating the golem, is exhilarated by his ability to control the creature and begins to explore the superhuman limits of its capabilities. But when he uses the golem to confront his bully, Johnny, he learns the horrifying truth of the creature's strength. Meanwhile, the Russian gangsters return to his family's store, and with Drew out for the night with the golem, Jodi finds herself alone in a dangerous situation.
We open up with Drew going up to the roof looking for his Golem that he tried to create only to find it missing. Perplexed he goes about his day until he discovers the truth. This is a cause for both celebration and for a warning, be careful what you wish for you just might get it. Not everything we want is something we should have and this is something that Drew is going to have to learn and it appears that’s going to have to happen the hard way.
I’ve been enjoying the storytelling here and the first two issues set-up this one nicely as it’s finally time for Drew to start his own journey into manhood. Like many families when the come to the United States religion starts to take less of a role in how we live our lives. It’s not a bad thing we acclimate and over generations we go from being more conscious of our practices to less and less it’s happened when my family immigrated to the States. So while he was able to get a translation for his grandfather’s tattoo he isn’t familiar with the legends to control it.
I like that the reader is going to take away different things from this story. Me it’s more personal for others it’ll be something else, maybe along the lines of with great power… either way the messages here are nice interwoven with the story creating a look at grief, rage and revenge in whole new way.
Harwinder and Gonzalo do some very nice work on the interiors here. The kids look like kids full of those moments of innocence mixed with growing up and the bullies well they have another mixture in them. When we first see the Golem and what leads up to it is amazing well done in my humble opinion. From the woods to the graffiti in the background they do such a great job with both awe, wonder and fear mixed into the imagery. The flow of the book through page layouts using angles and perspective create a nice look.
I’m slightly surprised that Drew went into this so full on without doing any further research into how one who makes a Golem is to control it. All he sees is red and nothing else, with his mother wanting to leave now that his grandfather is gone he’s rushing things much too quickly and this showcases the impetuousness of youth. The best and worst is yet to come and without a mentor there to help him or someone to talk sense into the young man I have a feeling that Drew is going to realise his mistakes much too late.
A very different coming of age story that mixes cultural background with mysticism that will test this young man’s limits. It’s a great story and one that is much more poignant than you’ll intially realise.