Synopsis: This month on ‘The Good Asian’. The Chinatown noir keeps flipping the genre on its head, as Edison Hark comes face to face with a killer—and more suffering, lust, and soul than he’d ever imagined in Chinatown.
Having found a body hidden in a basement when a young boy asked him for help. Edison Hark must do what he can to protect the boy. Ultimately he decides to allow the boy to be taken into custody but does take time to check on him. However, things get a little interesting when Edison meets an Asian lawyer by the name of Terrence Chang. We learn that Chang works for an organization called The Six Companies, which have been set up to help Chinese America and form a means of representing them in government. Edison doesn’t particularly hit it off with Chang. He thinks the Lawyer is a little too perfect. Nevertheless, Chang does spin an interesting story about the possible return of Hui Long. A murderous hatchet man that was last seen 30 years ago. But how does his return link to the disappearance of Ivy Chen?
In order to trie and answer that question. Edison hits the streets of Chinatown until he ultimately winds up at the Jade Club where he comes face to face with a killer. Having taken an ax to the shoulder. Edison tries to give chase but is stopped by his stepsister Victoria who runs the club. During a bit of bickering, she insinuates that her father Mason Carroway who is in a coma could well hold some of the answers.
Lee Loughridge and Alexandre Tefenkgi continue to do some brilliant work here. I love the sepia-style colour wash that makes the pages of this book look like an old-fashioned noir detective story. We get odd splashes of colour here and there. Especially when a bit of blood is involved, which really adds to the drama.
I loved the panels in which Edison meets with Terrence Chang and the micro expressions that the artists manage to capture on their faces. Edison makes no secret of the fact that he doesn’t like Chang. This is illustrated beautifully when Edison comments about his perfect suit and hair and such, which gets pointed out with a few panels to punctuate Edison’s point. I also loved the panels in the nightclub when we see the hatchet man attack. Overall. The artwork continues to work beautifully in tandem with Pornsak Pichetshote’s story.
‘The Good Asian’ continues to unravel the plot and storyline and add a few interesting twists. I particularly enjoyed the addition of the backstory of Hui Long and how the threat of coming back for revenge spooked Terrence Chang so much. I also enjoy the fact that this murderer may well have a connection with the missing Ivyy Chen. The Pacing of this story is just about right. It’s like a slow-boiling kettle threatening to boil over if left too long.
Much like last month. Writer Pornsak Pichetshote writes a bit of a closing editorial in which he talks about the conditions that the Chinese lived in during the early part of the 20th century when this book is set. It’s truly eye-opening to read about this and Pichetshote gives a brilliant commentary about it. Being that I was born and raised in the UK. I have very little knowledge of American History. So this is sort of a bit of education insofar as hearing a Chinese Perspective on this particular point in history. Whereas most hard-boiled Noir Detective stories are very much from a Western perspective.