The Shadow Wars have begun as Kindt takes us several months into Colin’s infiltration of Weaponeer. Now posing as CEO of the criminal arms organization it’s time to take out the controlling members who call themselves The Shadow Seven. They are hidden, dangerous, and aren’t to be taken lightly. The first on his list to be removed is an eccentric tech millionaire, La Barbe.
Kindt quickly and convincingly establishes Colin’s role as Weaponeer CEO and his plan to dismantle the organization. It’s a methodical process that doesn’t just involve ninja action and stabbing enemies with katanas. But more of the great spy/espionage approach that shows just how resourceful and patient our hero is. As before, Kindt takes us back to Ninjak’s younger days which shows the dual purpose of fleshing out the character but also tying back into what’s going on in the present day. Honestly I’m hoping for an issue where young Colin puts a serious beat down on that sadistic butler. When it comes to his enemies, we’re introduced to yet another deadly and formidable villain in La Barbe. He quickly takes Ninjak to task during the fight as Kindt lays down even more hints about the Undead Monk his connection to the Shadow Seven and Ninjak. The second story actually feels different from what Kindt has been giving us in the previous issues. It could be the change in artist which does affect the tone here but the pacing is a little quicker here as Colin meets the Undead Monk for the first and very painful time.
The issue features an artist change as Raul Allen handles the Shadow Wars story along with Patricia Martin on colors. Everything looks just as good and flows well especially during the flashbacks and action scenes. I’ll also add that Martin’s use of color for the scenery and backgrounds brings a different feel altogether to the mood of the story. And you can’t go wrong with an action scene that takes place in a panel that’s framed by an onomatopoeia. The fight between Ninjak and Le Barbe is almost perfect mainly because the action isn’t covered with a lot of word balloons. The dialogue is kept to a minimum so we can just enjoy the acrobatics and face punching. Stephen Segovia and Ulises Arreola handle the artwork for The Lost Files chapter which has a more action movie tone than before. It looks great but is over way too soon.
Overall, this issue is a nice jumping on point if you missed the first arc. It’s easy to get into after checking out the recap and you’ll enjoy it just the same. Especially if you’re into espionage and spy thrillers with over the top action thrown in for some added flavor. So if you haven’t jumped into this series yet just know that Ninjak is as unique and awesome as the other standout titles from Valiant! So go get it!