Ninjak #14 Advance Review
Writer: Matt Kindt
Artists: Diego Bernard, Khoi Pham
Colors: Arreola w/Pantazas, Dalhouse w/Cox
Writer Matt Kindt has already taken Ninjak a lot of places in the first 13 issues of this series. He’s infiltrated an illegal arms distribution network, hunted down some of the world’s most notorious villains, and traveled to the mystical realm known as the Deadside.
Now, in this first issue of Siege on King’s Castle, Colin King is, as the title suggests, under siege. This was my favorite issue of this run so far, and by a surprisingly wide margin, considering how good the rest of the run has been.
While there is certainly the action you would expect in a comic about a Ninja super spy, something this issue gets very right is the character exploration. We’re seeing everything that’s happening through Colin’s eyes, which made the story even more engaging.
Diego Bernard is an artist I’ve been calling underrated for quite some time, and this issue further solidifies that feeling. As an exclusive Valiant artist he’s working on some of their highest profile books, which I’m hoping will lead to him getting the exposure and recognition he definitely deserves. He’s got an incredibly clean, detailed style, and is also excellent at depicting explosions, fighting, and facial expressions, all of which I’m sure will be used to the max in this story.
As a lot of fans already know, Ninjak is the one Valiant title that has backup stories. While they’re still written by Matt Kindt, they always have a different art team than the main part of the story and generally give some background on one part of the story. I thought this issue’s backup was interesting, but since they’re so short it’ll be tough to tell exactly where it’s going until the next couple issues come out.
The art in this backup was not something I would’ve expected in a Ninjak book, but it worked and served the tone very well. I’m not familiar with the artist, Khoi Pham, but I’m looking forward to seeing more in future issues.
While I was happy this story fit my expectations of a good Ninjak story, the most important thing to me is not how closely my expectations were met, but how entertained I was; what I was feeling as I read and when I got done reading. Let me tell you, this issue got me really excited. I absolutely cannot wait for more.