Reviewed by Lord Simian
On August 16th, 1977, Elvis Presley was found dead of an apparent overdose. But was that the end of his story? Or did he go on to become something much more powerful? Is it possible for a man to become a God? Not THE God, but A God?
In Rich Koslowskiâ€™s graphic novel, The King, he explores this idea. More…Elvis died in 1977. But who is this guy in Vegas, performing several times a week? He sounds just like Elvis, and he looks just like Elvis. Except he wears a golden helmet over the top half of his head. Why? Well, he claims to be a God. The God of Song, specifically. And as such, he has to. As he told our protagonist, cynical Paul Erfurt, a reporter for Time Magazine: â€œAh wear it to create doubt. To test mah followersâ€™ faith.â€
Koslowski obviously loves Elvis, and provides us with an intriguingly written tale which asks us if itâ€™s possible for a man to transcend this mortal plane. Is he really the God of Song? Or is he a fake? Koslowski, through his protagonists, reveals a possible â€œlogicalâ€ explanation for it allâ€¦ yet at the same time, there are hints that maybe there really IS a higher power at work. Is it true? Well, Mr. Erfurt is no longer sure of his â€œfactsâ€ by the end of the tale.
The art in the book is, well, its Rich Koslowskiâ€™s art. Itâ€™s not amazingly great, but it IS very lifelike, with a slight cartoony bent, which I feel lends itself well to the subject. The story is expertly written, and lovingly detailed. We follow Paul Erfurt, a former writer for the Enquirer. If you think of the old â€œElvis sightingsâ€ tabloid articles, according to the story, Paul probably wrote them. But heâ€™s done with that. He wants to be a real reporter, and thus taking the assignment from Time Magazine to interview the King. We witness as he interviews The King, the New Memphis Mafia, the head of The Kingâ€™s new Church, and more. And we learn, with him, the impact that The King has had on peopleâ€™s lives in the short time heâ€™s been with us.
If you liked Sandman and Neil Gaiman, you should read this. If you have any interest in Elvis, you need to read this. If you have any interest in the power of music to affect peopleâ€™s lives, you MUST read this.
Trust the Lord of the Monkeys. He wouldnâ€™t steer you wrong. Not where Elvis is concerned.
Posted originally: 2006-07-23 02:46:44