Writer: Matt Kindt
Artist: Stephen Segovia & Ulises Arreola
Letterer: Dave Sharpe
A review by Josh Rose
Ninjak has been one of my favourite titles released by Valiant. Ninjak #26 isn’t really an action thriller as much as it is a love story. What would Ninjak do for the woman he loves? And can he survive against one of the Valiant Universe’s biggest baddies?
Ninjak is debriefing his MI-6 liaison, Neville Alcott about his mission into the Darquewood. Roku, Ninjak’s former MI-6 trainer turned assassin, has recruited Ninjak and a cabal of super villains known as the Shadow Seven to kill Master Darque, a voodoo sorcerer long thought to be dead. After entering the forest, Darque quietly takes down the Shadow Seven leaving Roku and Ninjak to find him at his throne. It’s revealed that Darque needs Ninjak and the Shadow Seven’s special energies in order to fully heal, and that Roku betrayed them and led them into a trap. And despite all that Roku has done, Ninjak is still trying to save her from herself.
I rather enjoy how Kindt chose to tell this story as a flashback. We know on the first page that that Ninjak survived the encounter with Darque, and Ninjak’s narration to Neville Alcott via captions let us know that whatever happened didn’t turn out the way he wanted.
Kindt has been building the relationship between Ninjak and Roku for a few issues now and that this mission was never about Darque for him, it was all about Roku and trying to restore her to who she used to be. Ninjak risks being able to kill Darque by holding back during his fight with Roku, but by destroying the means of killing him, it gives Kindt and Segovia an opportunity to really focus on Ninjak and Roku.
Stephen Segovia and Ulises Arreola’s art is fantastic in this issue. Master Darque and the forest are straight out of a horror flick where creepy is the name of the game, and Roku’s hair is commanding, looking extremely dangerous during her fight with Ninjak. The fight scene is a savage one and Segovia and Arreola capture it perfectly! You can see just how hard it is for Ninjak to survive fighting Roku and the Darquewood at the same time, while also holding back. The panels do an excellent job of building suspense and moving the plot along.
Buy It! Matt Kindt, Stephen Segovia and Ulises Arreola have been consistently producing an excellent series. Ninjak #26 is a fantastic book complete with action, romance, horror, and beautiful artwork. Its a great conclusion to the Seven Blades of Master Darque storyline, and I recommend it to any one for the art alone.