Review – Ninjak #23 (Valiant)


Publisher: Valiant Entertainment
Writer: Matt Kindt
Artist: Marc Laming
Colours: Ulises Arreola
Release Date: 11th January 2017

Ninjak appears to be a bit of an amalgamation, with several of your more popular Marvel and DC stories all rolled into one. We have two superspies falling in love (Hawkeye/Black Widow – or Steve Rodgers/Bucky if you read Reddit) against protocol, resulting in the ultimate death of one. She is then resurrected to become a powerful being called Roku (Jean Grey anyone?) who is looking to regain her lost memories by working with a powerful benefactor. Oh, and we also have a team of seven nefarious villains (Sinister Six, Anti-Justice League) working for some super megalomaniacal being (Thanos, Darksied), and yet, all I could think while reading it this issue was why wasn’t I made aware of this series sooner?

In this latest issue we are given a quick recap of the basis of Ninjak, before being thrown into an overworked MI-6 agent’s office as he attempts to coerce Ninjak – or Colin King to his friends – into returning to the field for that infamous “one last mission”.  We all know it’s never that simple, is it?  We quickly discover that there has been a breakout at the Stygia, a super-max black site prison where the “worst of the worst” are held, and which has been specially built to house the Shadow Seven, or anyone MI-6 feels is beyond rehabilitation.

It is feared that Roku has quickly made light work of all the security measures and convinced the Shadow Seven to help her complete one final task in return for whatever their hearts desire. I felt that the story, by Matt Kindt was very basic, and fairly typical for any 80s action thriller, but this is by no means meant as a criticism. This is exactly the kind of comic that is going to entice and enthrall new readers (a demographic I consider myself to be a part of) and potentially serve as a gateway to darker and heavier comics. This, coupled with the sharp and aesthetically pleasing artwork from Marc Laming and Ulises Arreola, makes for a great ‘pick up and read’ experience.

Honestly, I had no knowledge this title was out there, and I frequently struggle to find books that grasp me enough to continue reading, but I’ve just added Ninjak to my ‘must read’ list for 2017. Keep up the good work.

Rating: 4.5/5.

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The writer of this piece was: Chris Jobson

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