Ninjak vs the Valiant Universe #2 Review: Way Better Than the Opening Issue

Posted by February 27, 2018 Comment

Ninjak vs the Valiant Universe #2
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Summary
Screen Story: Aaron Schoenke, Screenplay: Aaron Schoenke, Sean Schoenke, Joe Harris, and Andrew Rowe, Writer: Eliot Rahal, Artist: Joe Bennett, Inker: Belardino Brabo, Color Artist: Ulises Arreola, Letters: Dave Sharpe, Cover by: Kevin Wada, Variant Covers by: Cafu and Andrew Dalhouse; Francis Portela and Andrew Dalhouse; Joe Eisma and Gabe Eltaeb, Editors: Josh Johns and Benjamin Peterson, Editor-in-Chief: Warren Simons,

Ninjak (or Ninja-K) washes up on a river bank with his prize, and he makes his way to a nearby warehouse.

Elsewhere, Livewire approaches the Eternal Warrior to plead that he won’t kill Ninjak. Unfortunately, Bloodshot is already closing in on Colin King. X-O Manowar isn’t too far behind.

Ninjak vs the Valiant Universe #2 cover by Kevin Wada
Ninjak vs the Valiant Universe #2 cover by Kevin Wada

While the first issue of Ninjak vs the Valiant Universe was a rough read, burdened with slow pacing and subpar dialogue, #2 gets to the action and pursuit. This proves to be a boon, as this comic is actually a lot of fun.

Much of the book consists of Ninjak on the run and Ninjak fighting off other heroes. It doesn’t wait about for Bloodshot and X-O Manowar to catch up with Colin; they find him this issue.

Even the dialogue is better. It’s not anything special, but it’s less clichéd than in the previous installment. The scene between Livewire and Eternal Warrior feels natural. Even Roku is a bit more fun, and she had the unfortunate honor of delivering most of the awful lines from last issue.

There’s an ending stinger which is one of those, “Okay, that didn’t really happen,” moments. To give the comic credit, it actually foreshadows why the sequence is different from what we see, and that’s more than the Big Two often do.

The fight scenes are good. That is, of course, the reason we’re here. We want to see Ninjak tangle with the likes of Bloodshot and X-O. They aren’t particularly extended, and they play out like a haphazard and reckless Batman fighting other DC heroes. However, that recklessness is one of the major charms of Ninjak, so I can’t complain.

Ninjak vs the Valiant Universe #2 art by Joe Bennett, Belardino Brabo, and Ulises Arreola
Ninjak vs the Valiant Universe #2 art by Joe Bennett, Belardino Brabo, and Ulises Arreola

Joe Bennet’s artwork continues to be up to snuff. The characters and scenes are given a lot of detail and kinetic energy. Belardino Brabo’s inking helps tighten the scenes, and Ulises Arreola’s color art is appropriately bright to give the world an upbeat and high-energy atmosphere all its own.

Ninjak vs. the Valiant Universe #2 is a vast improvement on the first issue. With more life, action, and excitement to go around, this comic begins to make good on the promises of its title. This one is recommended. Check it out.

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(Last Updated February 26, 2018 11:11 pm )

About Joshua Davison

Josh is a longtime super hero comic fan and an aspiring comic book and fiction writer himself. He also trades in videogames, Star Wars, and Magic: The Gathering, and he is also a budding film buff. He's always been a huge nerd, and he hopes to contribute something of worth to the wider geek culture conversation. He is also happy to announce that he is the new Reviews Editor for Bleeding Cool. Follow on Twitter @joshdavisonbolt.

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