I have said it before and I will say it again, “Independent comics are where you will find the best stories.” This comic written by Cedrick Lui with art by C.H. Kim, caught me by surprise. This is a comic full of deep symbolism that makes you really look at the art and think about the words you are reading. What the art tells you is just as important as what is written from panel to panel.
The artwork is excellent. This comic is gray scale and it works great for this story. Kim’s line work and his details really elevate this comic to a professional level. A lot of indie comics can really lack something in the art, but that is not the case here. In fact I would say Kim could work for Marvel, DC, or any comic company he wanted.
Now the story needs some discussion. The writing here is great. The problem I find is that Son of God is more poetry than a story. Every good story has the same basic elements. There is a protagonist(good guy), antagonist(bad guy), a clear conflict, set up, and a resolution. The hero of this story is a man named Armand who appears in an alley naked and proclaims himself the Son of God. He is trying to get to his goddess so they can reunite and save the world. So we have a descent set up. However, as he walks through this city there doesn’t seem to be much conflict or a tangible antagonist.
There is a lot of internal conflict as the hero walks through the city and talks about the moral rot that infest modern society. The imagery given through the artwork is great and as he continues his walk through the city we see many other examples of this. However, no tangible antagonist emerges. He talks about the devil and his agents, which seem to be the government from the panels showing the policemen and the satellites orbiting in space. At this point there is a shift in the progression of events as the hero begins a fall into what I can only describe as a bad acid trip.
During this trip he sees giant eyeballs everywhere chasing him, a spider talks to him and it ends with him naked before his goddess. Her role in the story isn’t clear, but I can only guess that she is the Hindu goddess Lakshmi. This fits with the themes of this comic as she is the goddess of wealth and prosperity, both material and spiritual.
After his trip, we find him in a non-descript office, sitting across a desk from a man who tells him his brother is dead. He gives him some prescription meds and tells him he can beat it and that he is not the Son of God. Our final images of Armand, are of him entering a soup kitchen. Standing in the door greeting him is his goddess. She is one of the volunteers. So we have a happy ending as our hero is reunited with his goddess after all.
Overall, I enjoyed this comic as a one shot. It is unique and thought provoking. I thought the story was lacking a little, but the artwork was fantastic and our schizophrenic hero Armand was reunited with Lakshmi, the homeless shelter goddess. Gotta love a happy ending.