REVIEW: Brik #5

Drew and his Golem are certainly making quite an impact on the suburb of South Yonkers.  But an angry retaliation may just be around the corner for our erstwhile vigilante and his spirit imbued cohort.

As issue 5 of this series from Oni Press begins, Drew’s confidence is sky-high, standing up to the local bully and finally finding his feet with the girl of his young dreams.  The only blip on his radar, at least for a while, is his Mom grounding him.  Still this leads to a confrontation of sorts which gives a nod to foretelling before the cliff-hanger ending.

Writing duo Adam Glass and Michael Benson maintain their high standard from previous issues.  The pacing of the book is excellent, with a sprinkling of every aspect of Drew’s life seeing the page.  The characters act in a way that seems lifelike, allowing the reader to empathize with some of the elements shown, with a genuine form of dialogue that also fits well.  However, this does lead to a small question; what is with the pop culture references?  Whilst there are less in this issue than in previous issues, their inclusion is kind of jarring.  Don’t get me wrong, I understand it must be hard to describe a rock like monster and not think of Ben Grimm, but the Sixth Sense one seems a little out-of-place.  I mean the film is 17 years old!  Still, this is a minor observation and such quibbles are quickly forgotten with the ensuing action and drama.

Also continuing to excel is artist Harwinder Singh whose odd angular approach  is still extremely effective.  Singh’s work may well look like a mix between a less dynamic Norm Breyfogle or a softer Klaus Janson, with Steve Ditko stylings.  By using these as potential inspirations, Singh gives the book a unique feel and look.  The art is expressive throughout, with characters looking consistent which can be a problem for some artists.  If there is one thing I think could be improved on it would be camera angles, with the ones used giving a few panels a flat look.  Like the pop culture references, this doesn’t really detract from the book.  Gonzalo Duarte does a fantastic job on colors, giving the environment the feeling of a hazy summer, with a penciled effect that seeps into and adds to the disjointedness of Drew and his life, possibly alluding to the awkwardness of teen life.

Brik has been a surprising read.  At each turn, Drew’s life has the potential to fall apart, but despite the surrounding despair there are lights that spring hope eternal that entices the reader into wanting Drew to succeed in South Yonkers, where others have faltered and failed.

Writing – 4.5 Stars
Art -4.5 Stars
Colors -5 Stars

(W) Adam Glass and Michael Benson
(A/CA) Harwinder Singh
(C) Gonzalo Duarte
Publisher: Oni Press

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