‘Godshaper’ #1 weaves plenty of sharp social commentary into its fun
By Brandy Dykhuizen. Godshaper throws us into a world in which identity is determined at birth, society keeps people in their rightful places, and the Midwest can be a hard spot to fit in when you go against the grain. And in case that hit a little too close to home, each person forms a symbiotic relationship with their own personal deity, feeding off of — and protecting each other from — the big bad world.
The trick to thriving is in the hustle, and Ennay and Bud have got grifting down pat. Always travel-ready with their bindle and pitch, they move from town to town, needed by most and hated by all. Ennay’s special talent as a Shaper allows him to reconfigure these gods — “reshape” them, he says — which he does with all the style and swagger of someone orchestrating an impressive feint, while Bud executes their real purpose in the next room. Shapers aren’t supposed to have gods, but Ennay’s little Bud has developed a talent only a transient could love. Together they give the people what they want while skimming just a little off the top for themselves.
Ennay plays the game by day, but lets his glittery, flashy side surface as a cantik crier at night. But even his People’s Poet personality is threatened to be exposed as a scam when he meets Clara, aka Smudge, another soul seeking to escape the crappy hand life dealt her. Maybe blackmail isn’t the most romantic of languages, but it’s one sure to be understood by a fellow con, so Smudge packs in the pride to get what she wants. Ennay is left with quite the dilemma – to skip town and continue gliding under the radar, looking out for number one, or stand up and advocate for a kindred spirit in need.
Jonas Goonface gives us a surreal lens through which to view Simon Spurrier’s sharp social commentary, as we’re asked to ponder the point of false idols, hierarchies and gender labels. A lot has been thrown into the mix in Godshaper, resulting in a metaphor-heavy world that’s been constructed without trivializing the problems at hand. This is definitely a series worth seeing through to the end.
Written by Simon Spurrier.
Art by Jonas Goonface.
Letters by Colin Bell.
8.5 out of 10