In an attempt to take out the weapons designer group Weaponeer, Ninjak has run into a problem in the form of Roku. The deadly assassin he freed from captivity in the first issue. So as the two freefall over twenty stories Ninjak also has to beat the clock and return to his contact before the sedative he gave him wears off.
All of this fast paced action is smoothly paced between two other stories that give Ninjak some weight as a character. As Kindt weaves us through some extreme action sequences he also takes us back to the life of a young Colin King. With no parents he’s left in the care of a taskmaster of a Butler who young Colin is desperate to escape from. Kindt uses these sequences masterfully and this one in particular shows the craft, guile, and tenacity of a child at his limit of taking abuse. The switch back and forth between the present story is abrupt but not in a way that takes you from the story. Kindt uses something in those flashbacks to tie into the current situation so it all ties together. The separate story which features an adult Colin but in his early spy career is much slower paced but it has the makings of a great spy thriller. What is nice about this one is that it feels like something totally different and separate from the first story in the book. Colin is unsure and not as equipped in this point of his career but we also get a little more emotion from the character as well.
Mann has helped to make Ninjak another of Valiant’s great looking titles and pulls off some exciting sequences again in this issue. The freefall/fight scene is just wonderful and intense. Reflections of Roku in the shards of glass as she’s coming for Ninjak is a panel that is made only better as Mann pulls back the view to let us see just how high the two assassins are. Though it was slightly confusing during the quick shots of Ninjak’s hand movements but it keeps things from being normal when firing a grappling hook. Butch Guice is just as adept with his part of the story and shifts the mood putting you in the middle of something else entirely. There’s a panel where Colin realizes he’s been found out and the look on his face is priceless. Ulises Arreola colors both and nails it on each story. When you also throw in Larosa’s cover than you’ve got one of the best looking titles on the shelf this week!
There is a lot going on in this series and while the sudden transitions between time periods might not be for everyone it’s in no way a deterrent. Ninjak is starting off as another feather in Valiant’s cap with solid storytelling and the beginning of a definitive back story. If you’re into spies, assassins, espionage and over the top action then you’ll want to jump in and pick up Ninjak!