Snake Eyes has rejoined the Arashikage ninja clan in what seems to be for a dual purpose. One is to destroy them from the inside, and the other seems to be in assisting Storm Shadow with killing the new Cobra Commander. Though first they must locate and eliminate Zartan for his part in the deception that has angered Storm Shadow.
As many already know, Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes have a very long and complicated past. Dixon touches on this to help put at least a part of their relationship into perspective in the form of a flashback. It seems as if regardless of the different paths the two have taken, Storm Shadow has always had a strong desire to have Snake Eyes by his side. Dixon also gives the set up of why Storm Shadow and Snake Eyes are working together, so even if you haven’t picked up the previous issues you won’t be lost here. As usual, the dialog is handled by the other characters, and Dixon is still able to pull this off quite effectively. He gives Snake Eyes a dominant presence throughout the issue, and keeps the faceless and silent ninja as interesting as ever.
Robert Atkins is back to handle the artwork for this arc, and he continues to impress here just like in the beginning of the series. His action sequences are some of the best, and the assassination attempt on the train was intense! Most of it is due to the nice amount of detail in his work and Simon Gough’s great coloring. The visual shift with the panel layouts during the flash backs were a nice touch, as well. It was also great to see the dots being used to show Zartan’s transforming effect. I remember them being used a lot back during the Marvel run of the G.I. Joe title.
There is a question as to why Storm Shadow seems to be a little too trusting too soon of Snake Eyes right now. It seems that if anyone in the Arashikage would know that Snake Eyes is being deceptive, it would be him. So far the only person that seems to doubt Snake’s loyalty is a ninja named Rika. Hopefully this will be fleshed out later on, as this is only the beginning of the story arc.
There’s no reason for you not to be reading this title if you’re a fan of a good story and great looking artwork. Dixon has updated the Snake Eyes, Storm Shadow, and Zartan rivalry, and it’s just as intriguing as it was in the eighties, if not more. When you also throw in the assassination threat to the new Cobra Commander, it just cranks the intensity up that much more!