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REVIEW: Godkiller: Walk Among Us (Episode #2) directed by Matt Pizzolo

REVIEW SUMMARY: Episode #2 makes Godkiller more intriguing than episode #1 alone did.

MY RATING:

BRIEF SYNOPSIS: The second episode of a new post-apocalyptic motion comic based on Matt Pizollo’s graphic novel.

MY REVIEW:
PROS: Intriguing post-apocalyptic world; artwork is unique and appropriately dark.
CONS: Some elements seemed designed to shock instead of being there out of necessity.
BOTTOM LINE: An extreme Dystopian post-apocalyptic mashup.


Godkiller is a bizarre (sometime disturbing) mixture of Matt Pizzolo’s edgy story, Anna Muckracker’s gritty artwork and noisy speed metal. The DVD box of episode #2 seems to forego the “Motion Comic” label of episode #1 in favor of “Illustrated Film”, but the medium is the same: images from Pizzolo’s comic are animated and embellished to provide a unique storytelling experience. It’s definitely not for the timid. Nor the young: the scenes are graphic and the subject matter is clearly adult. It’s like an extreme mashup of a hardcore Dystopia and a post-apocalypse.

In my review if Godkiller episode #1, the biggest complaint was that the feeling of incompleteness left after viewing it. With episode #2, much of that feeling goes away as the story provides some much-needed world building and thankfully begins to pick up the narrative drive missing from the first thirty minutes.

Here, the story focuses on Tommy Stark (voiced by Justin Pierre) and his quest into Outer City to find an artificial heart for his ailing sister. The disconnected stories from the previous episode begin to intersect as Tommy, sold into slavery to the sinister Beezal (Lydia Lunch), eventually meets up with Dr. Mulciber (Lance Henriksen) and learns about the mythological faction to which he belongs, something Tommy learned about through comic books sold in the restricted society of the Republic. Together Tommy, Mulciber, and Halfpip (Danielle Harris) – coerced into working for Beezal — set out to track down a powerful artifact, but not before trouble finds them as they attempt to employ a bounty hunter named Soledad (Nicki Clyne).

As the story of Godkiller begins to solidify, some the unanswered questions from before get answered. Mulciber’s powers over the Ether, for example, are somewhat explained as the control over matter. (The jury is still out, however, on why he has to receive oral sex in order to initiate his abilities – a plot point seemed designed to shock rather than world-build.) Although some questions have yet to be answered, enough groundwork is laid out to postpone any frustration that comes with not knowing. The story has thus moved beyond head-scratching and into the realm of I-wonder-what-happens-next. The story is taking on more of a comic book/graphic novel feel as well.

I suspect an introduction to Godkiller would have best been marketed as a single one-hour production instead of two separate 30-minute episodes; it isn’t until the end of the first hour that you know for sure that this world has something to offer viewers.

About John DeNardo (13012 Articles)
John DeNardo is the Managing Editor at SF Signal and a columnist at Kirkus Reviews. He also likes bagels. So there.
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