Going into the second issue of Shinku I expected a story filled with expo to get us better acquainted with the characters involved. Well, Marz and Moder decided to skip that for now and keep the story going with plenty of ass kicking and stylized action. As the story opens, Asano has called his retainers to a meeting to discuss a plan of action to deal with Shinku after her assassination of an elder last issue. Little do they know, she is already on her way to break up their little meeting with plans of her own.
Just because the story is a little heavy on the action, don’t think that you won’t get a few gems from Marz scattered here and there. The dialog we get is great and moves this issue at a very nice pace. He is also fleshing out the cast of the title, though it’s done more in their deeds than just giving you caption boxes to read. This is a method I actually prefer, because it just seems like a more natural progression of the character. One scene in particular that stands out to me is when Shinku is stringing her bow in preparation of her attack. Sure, she could have shown up with some fancy bow ready to take out the vampires, but this just shows that she is very much set in the old ways of the samurai. Moder makes this sequence look great in four silent panels that make the mood a lot more intense.
When it comes to the artwork I expected the same level of cool that we were privy to in the first issue. Well, fans will get that and much more, as Moder makes this issue even better than the first. From the opening scene which takes place in the past to the scenes in the present, there isn’t a sub par panel in the book. For some reason the elevator drop which leads to a really cool fight inside, along with the wind mill kick on the table are two of my favorite scenes. I was a little disappointed to see that the vampires had their fangs on the outside of their mouths, which admittedly is a personal issue I have. Other than that the entire art team really brings their A game to deliver some quality work for the fans.
I’ve been hearing a lot of comparisons to Blade when Shinku is brought up, and the only thing they have in common is that they kill vampires. So don’t think you’ll be reading some cheap facsimile of another title when you pick up Shinku. It’s got an entirely different flavor while still maintaining some core things we all love when it comes to titles similar to this. I’m still a little on the fence about how well Davis is going to fit into the story since he’s the wild card, as sometimes those don’t always work. With Shinku only on its second issue I am willing to say that I will be reading this title for as long as I’m enjoying it. If you’re a fan of samurai, great art, vampires, and a solid story then Shinku is a title you’ll want to check out immediately.
Review copy provided by Image Comics