Joe Golem: Occult Detective #3 (of 5)
Story By: Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden
Art By: Patric Reynolds
Colors By: Dave Stewart
Published By: Dark Horse
This is how a comic should be. A perfect balance of art and story, each complimenting the other, both propelling the entire tale forward to a satisfying end. You just know that you’re dealing with seasoned creative individuals when a book reads this smooth. In the words of Mike Meyer’s old Yiddish grandmother from Saturday Night Live, “It’s like buttah”.
The story cuts back and forth, between current day and 15th century Slovakia. Both stories center around Joe Golem, who looked more like his mythical creature-self in the 15th century than the square-jawed hero of today. In the modern story Joe is on the hunt to save a group of kidnapped children who have been taken hostage by a bizarre Black Lagoon style sea creature. The ensuing fight between Joe and the beast leaves you feeling breathless. (that might also have to do with the fact that this battle takes place underwater)
The older tale focuses on Joe brutally wiping out a coven of witches who have tormented the countryside. The juxtaposition between the soulless killing machine of then, versus the heroic man of now is not lost on the readers. This is the product of a talented and versed team creating a book that finds a way to find harmony between haunting visuals and snappy banter.
Mike Mignola and Christopher Golden have made successful careers out of find the humanity in monsters; Joe Golem, for all intents and purposes, might be the zenith of these two creators at their best. Patric Reynolds art is paced beautifully not one line is wasted. This is one of the best reads I have had in a while and a delightful way to kick off 2016.