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 Post subject: Ninja-K #1 discussion
PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 5:56:17 pm 
Nice art! (I used to own that.)
Nice art! (I used to own that.)
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Joined: Wed Feb 04, 2004 11:11:13 am
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Location: Nebraska!
Valiant fan since: 1992
Favorite character: Bloodshot
Favorite title: Harbinger
Favorite writer: Joshua Dysart
Favorite artist: Lewis LaRosa
It's a couple days early but review .pdfs were sent out last Friday and some retailer editions have hit the market.
I got a chance to read it over the weekend as well as see all the original art. I had high hopes for this book and I was not disappointed.
I like how it added to the Ninjak mythos while acknowledging what has already been established. I may be a little biased, as Giorello's Valiant art rep, but the art was incredible.
There are some killer splash and nice action pages throughout the book. I like that they went for a longer page count on the first issue too.
10/10 for me.
Dan

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 6:02:15 pm 
Just jumpin' through time arcs, that's all.
Just jumpin' through time arcs, that's all.
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 12:03:41 pm
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Location: Tacoma
Valiant fan since: ECCC April 2016
Favorite character: Bloodshot/Ninjak/Divinity
Favorite title: Divinity/BS Reborn/Britannia
Favorite writer: Kindt/Lemire/Roberts
Favorite artist: All of them, really
I too seriously enjoyed this book, and can see some (possibly) amazing things happening in the future.

Collin King in the raw! Cut down to the nerve! I think this has potential to be just as good (if not better) than the current X-O series!

I too have high hopes for this book!

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 6:26:54 pm 
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi
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Joined: Sun May 21, 2017 5:04:14 pm
Posts: 173
Location: St. John's, Florida
Valiant fan since: 1992
Favorite character: X-O/Bloodshot
Favorite title: X-O (2012)
Favorite writer: Kindt/Venditti/Dysart
Favorite artist: BWS/Braithwaite/Layton
Haven't read it yet, but I am excited. I do not work on Wednesdays for a reason. My wife works and my daughter is in school. Nobody yapping, just me and stories.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:14:31 pm 
Those responsible for those remarks have been sacked.
Those responsible for those remarks have been sacked.
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Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2008 5:07:56 pm
Posts: 3913
Location: Woods of Southeastern NC
Valiant fan since: 1992
Favorite character: Vincent the Goat!
Favorite title: All of them!
Summydad1 wrote:
Haven't read it yet, but I am excited. I do not work on Wednesdays for a reason. My wife works and my daughter is in school. Nobody yapping, just me and stories.

Dude, you are so frickin' lucky! I haven't had a set-up like that in 20 years... facepalm

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 7:51:32 pm 
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi
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Joined: Sun May 21, 2017 5:04:14 pm
Posts: 173
Location: St. John's, Florida
Valiant fan since: 1992
Favorite character: X-O/Bloodshot
Favorite title: X-O (2012)
Favorite writer: Kindt/Venditti/Dysart
Favorite artist: BWS/Braithwaite/Layton
Haha yes! I have the same routine every Wednesday. Take my daughter to school, go to the gym, go to comic shop for pull, go home and read, take a nap. If I can squeeze in Pollo Tropical for lunch, it makes for a great day.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2017 4:35:28 am 
H.A.R.D.E.R. Corps, with Extra Resistance
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Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2012 11:34:56 pm
Posts: 1239
Location: North Carolina
Valiant fan since: Since VEI(Turok #1?)
Favorite character: Divinity/Shadowman/LiveWire
Favorite title: Divinity/Imperium/Ninjak
Favorite writer: Kindt/Lemire/Dysart
Favorite artist: Mann/Cafu/De la Torre
This was continuity heavy, and I loved it.... :thumb:

The quiet moments between Colin and Amanda... :cloud9:

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 4:52:16 pm 
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi

Joined: Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:04:27 pm
Posts: 216
Valiant fan since: 2017
Favorite character: XO Manowar
Favorite title: XO Manowar
Favorite writer: Matt Kindt
Favorite artist: Tomas Giorello
I wrote a way too long review instead of writing a book myself lol:

The premise of this book is a relaunch (not retcon or reboot as it seems to follow the continuity and actually care about what Kindt delivered, actually referencing it in the script – which there’s a portion of in the Pre-Order edition I read), is someone’s going around killing all of the prior Ninja operatives still living. This is a 40 page book, and there’s a lot of interesting ideas, and issues with the writing in general, which i’ll get to in detail.

Conceptually, having a Ninja program with an A-K is pretty interesting. I don’t know if this was established in continuity before, but it makes sense and the history is interesting. The problem is, leading the book with 8 pages of the history of the program and not just getting right into our characters we’re supposed to care about is a weird way to open a comic. The pages look like pin-ups as someone voices over talking about it, we eventually learn is Ninja-D about 4 pages in. It cuts eventually to him as an old man and Ninja-K talking, where he asks Ninja-K if this was useful to him. It suffers from a “show don’t tell” aspect of comics in that it delivered us far too much backstory. I get Ninja-D needed to be established as someone important, and the history was important as well, but the lengthiness of it poses an issue.

Especially as it goes into a scene of Ninja-K going over in his head Ninja-D’s “rules of the trade” while he’s in battle in China, rescuing a kid from people we don’t learn much about. It’s a throwaway intro to show us the gadgets, his prowess, his abilities and establish we have a bonafide Ninja. This creates a problem as we already had 8 pages of establishing background, so we’re a full 16 pages in before an actual story starts. Now these pages were a bit more fun and enjoyable to read, but didn’t really grip beyond a generic fight.

After all this intro we are TOLD (not shown) Ninja-D has been killed. Ninja-K already knows and is gonna investigate. Very little tension. Now this could have been way more interesting easily by having Ninja-D talk to Ninja-K on a call about the rules, training, history, while Ninja-K was fighting. Maybe even a flashback side-by-side comparison sequence to get that history in. The line goes dead after some gurgling, Ninja-K panics and flies back to see what’s going on. An intro could have been done in half the pages that way and been much more exciting.

We cut to pause for a few pages of relationship drama – which is actually fairly good. I liked where it went on that angle, where Ninja-K is sleeping with Livewire (another valiant hero) which I’m going to assume was established prior to this. She’s not happy with the shallow level of their relationship and it kinda blows up. Solid few pages here.

There is one weird "throw you out because of politics signalling" moment in the book, as to be sadly expected in very superhero book out there these days. Ninja K after having the fight goes down, starts talking to himself in a line that added nothing and would have been easy to edited out and not play social justice politics with. “You can seduce targets of any age or gender in twenty four languages if you’re being paid to do so…”

Okay, it’s weird enough someone talks to themselves (should have been dialogue box probably), but in the mental commentary we’re really worrying about “any age and gender?” It just made me roll my eyes as that line reads like it was out of Teen Vogue, not a super bad *SQUEE* British agent. It could be shortened to “You can seduce any targets if you’re being paid to do so…” and would have come across far more natural without the rather pointless signaling. This stuff isn’t brave or interesting in comics anymore, it’s just annoying and throws people out of the story. And the more I look at it, it's got pedophillia implications I am really hoping are unindented and just missed by editorial.

It follows the rest of the book Ninja-K investigating and trying to figure out who killed them, with an explosion at the end. There’s a lot of telling of the past, speculating on past villains like Dr. Silke (important in the Valiant Universe) and a femme fatale type who I’m going to guess is the major villain when it comes to it (we haven’t seen, we just have explosion). This is the meat of the story, it’s pretty good, and though it’s almost all talking back and forth, it’s pretty interesting and tense, especially in the last couple of pages.

If they’re going to do 40-page comics, they need to pack more story into it than this, in my opinion. The set up took way too long to get to, in something that without all the exposition, we really could have gotten to in 2-3 pages to kick off the better action adventure. Page 1: “Ninja-D, my mentor, is dead.” Page 2 “Who could have done this?” Maybe the femme fatale? Page 3: Explosion of the whole house! Flip and let’s get into the action with the real bad guy.

The exposition didn’t add enough interesting worldbuilding or character (aside from the Livewire interaction) to really justify much existing. The story really only got started in those last couple pages. If you wanted to layer in some more exposition, could flashback a little after that but on the storytelling level, it’s a bit disappointing.

Character wise, they all kind of talk the same. There’s one British dude who actually sounds British – he’s the guy questioned late in the book, but everyone else sounds pretty American. Same cadences, same verbiage. Everyone talks to themselves at that (shouldn’t have been more than one character doing that, it stands out when it’s multiple), and so the characters come across a little flat too.

Now it sounds like I’m roasting the story, but it’s got some potential. There are interesting concepts, interesting ideas where it could pan out over the next couple issues. With 40-page comics, I’m happy Valiant is trying out pushing the boundaries on that front too as most comics stick to 20 for monthly production. The end pages was enough of a hook I’ll keep reading, but this story wise was a tough first issue that should have had more meat to it.


On the art front: Tomas Giorello makes it all worthwhile. I can look at the pages and they’re so beautiful I don’t care about anything else. Perhaps they were thinking that, and made this more of a pin-up book for him than anything else, and it worked to some level. His masterful and beautiful art made it a joy to flip through the pages, and almost made me forget the story issues until I went back and thought about it afterward. I really loved his Femme Fatale late in the book, one of the most beautiful drawings of a woman I’ve seen in a comic in a long time. I mean wow! No complaints there at all. The coloring is a bit on the darker side, but it works for the book as well. I hope they can keep up the quality when it rotates artists on this monthly book, as I know there’s no way someone can keep up a 40 pages a month schedule for long.

Overall, the art saved it. An intriguing premise, but the execution really needed some heavy editing, and story wise, I feel we should be well into wherever issue 2 is supposed to be rather than where we’re at. I’m still on board, but I really hope issue 2 has more meat to the story.

7/10

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 6:31:27 pm 
Nice art! (I used to own that.)
Nice art! (I used to own that.)
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Joined: Wed Feb 04, 2004 11:11:13 am
Posts: 4893
Location: Nebraska!
Valiant fan since: 1992
Favorite character: Bloodshot
Favorite title: Harbinger
Favorite writer: Joshua Dysart
Favorite artist: Lewis LaRosa
Original art gallery for Ninja-K #1 is posted for anyone who want to take a look:
http://sonicdan.com/giorello/ninjak.htm

Thanks!
Dan

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:47:55 pm 
Rockin' out in Torquehalla
Rockin' out in Torquehalla
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Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2012 11:01:36 am
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Location: Saint Louis
Valiant fan since: 1992
Favorite character: Timewalker
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Wow, that was great! Terrific first issue, a real page turner!

Anyone else remark with an “oh *SQUEE*!” when it showed Ninjak and Livewire in bed together? Wife and I both let that fly! :lol:

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:12:21 pm 
Just jumpin' through time arcs, that's all.
Just jumpin' through time arcs, that's all.
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 12:03:41 pm
Posts: 1658
Location: Tacoma
Valiant fan since: ECCC April 2016
Favorite character: Bloodshot/Ninjak/Divinity
Favorite title: Divinity/BS Reborn/Britannia
Favorite writer: Kindt/Lemire/Roberts
Favorite artist: All of them, really
Keith wrote:
Wow, that was great! Terrific first issue, a real page turner!

Anyone else remark with an “oh *SQUEE*!” when it showed Ninjak and Livewire in bed together? Wife and I both let that fly! :lol:
I was at home and an "oh sh!t" came out!

I so loved this book, loved the way it progressed. With this being the start of an entire series, I thing Christos did a fantastic job story building, going for the long drive vs laying it up every issue. Building a story/plot line vs making it cheesy and filled with holes.

I think fans are going to chew on this history like a good PB and J!

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G900A using Tapatalk

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:31:25 pm 
One of few who have a circa 1993 Valiant tattoo
One of few who have a circa 1993 Valiant tattoo
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Joined: Thu Jul 01, 2004 11:06:09 pm
Posts: 3586
Location: Cody, Wyoming
Valiant fan since: VH1 X-O 14
Favorite character: Sting
Favorite title: Harbinger
I loved the whole story-telling and the art was top-notch.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:05:14 pm 
Nanite-powered posting
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Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2012 11:19:03 am
Posts: 1298
Location: Nebraska
Favorite title: Harbinger
Favorite writer: Dysart
Great story. Always enjoyable when the story resolution isn't choreographed - there's still mystery to this piece. I enjoyed Gage's work with BTVS, so am looking forward to watching it unfurl. Tomas' art is fantastic as well. Very strong book. 10/10

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 10:18:29 am 
Personal shoe-shopper for Atom!
Personal shoe-shopper for Atom!
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Joined: Thu Jun 12, 2014 6:45:19 am
Posts: 293
I loved it, definitely has the potential to rival X-O. Ninjak comics just seems to be getting better and better...


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 12:31:28 pm 
innerSPACE does whatever I tell them
innerSPACE does whatever I tell them
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2012 6:51:43 am
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Location: On the 7.5th floor of LesterCorp, headed through the back door to John Malkovich's brain.
Valiant fan since: 1991
Favorite character: Aric
Favorite title: Harbinger
If anyone would like to hear our OTV:VCR podcast discussing/reviewing this issue [& Bloodshot: Salvation #3], please follow the link;

http://onlythevaliant.com/episodes/vcr141/

Thanks to any who listen in :thumb:

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 10:26:18 pm 
Mmm, I was drooling over Cooshie tonight.
Mmm, I was drooling over Cooshie tonight.
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Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 2:41:10 pm
Posts: 9856
Location: Lehigh Valley, PA!
Great issue. A really long read. The first half was excellent; the second half got talky. But there's a ton of set-up there so I'm happy to see how it all unfolds. Magnificent art!


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 2:49:16 pm 
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi

Joined: Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:04:27 pm
Posts: 216
Valiant fan since: 2017
Favorite character: XO Manowar
Favorite title: XO Manowar
Favorite writer: Matt Kindt
Favorite artist: Tomas Giorello
The back of the book said Ninja-K #2 and "40-Pages Monthly" are they keeping up this pace of 40 pages (which is cool if so) or is that just a misprint?

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 17, 2017 6:39:50 pm 
Just jumpin' through time arcs, that's all.
Just jumpin' through time arcs, that's all.
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Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 12:03:41 pm
Posts: 1658
Location: Tacoma
Valiant fan since: ECCC April 2016
Favorite character: Bloodshot/Ninjak/Divinity
Favorite title: Divinity/BS Reborn/Britannia
Favorite writer: Kindt/Lemire/Roberts
Favorite artist: All of them, really
otomo wrote:
The back of the book said Ninja-K #2 and "40-Pages Monthly" are they keeping up this pace of 40 pages (which is cool if so) or is that just a misprint?


I wanna say that it will be the norm for the first arc at least. I remember hearing/reading something like that.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:56:02 pm 
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi
Harbinger rank: Aonisaibushi

Joined: Sat Mar 25, 2017 4:04:27 pm
Posts: 216
Valiant fan since: 2017
Favorite character: XO Manowar
Favorite title: XO Manowar
Favorite writer: Matt Kindt
Favorite artist: Tomas Giorello
TheeBaldMoose wrote:
otomo wrote:
The back of the book said Ninja-K #2 and "40-Pages Monthly" are they keeping up this pace of 40 pages (which is cool if so) or is that just a misprint?


I wanna say that it will be the norm for the first arc at least. I remember hearing/reading something like that.


Well that's cool. Especially if there's more Giorello art.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:58:49 am 
Nice art! (I used to own that.)
Nice art! (I used to own that.)
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Joined: Wed Feb 04, 2004 11:11:13 am
Posts: 4893
Location: Nebraska!
Valiant fan since: 1992
Favorite character: Bloodshot
Favorite title: Harbinger
Favorite writer: Joshua Dysart
Favorite artist: Lewis LaRosa
Tomas tells me he's done 22 pages for issue #2. Ariel Olivetti as doing a segment which will probably round it out to the advertised 40 pages.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 1:54:46 pm 
5318008
5318008
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Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2005 10:09:33 am
Posts: 550
Location: Lincolnton, Ga
Valiant fan since: Before the Anni-Padda...
Favorite character: Divinity, X-O, & Bloodshot
Favorite title: Divinity
Favorite artist: Trevor Hairsine
This book exceeded expectations for me.

I bought the first issue not knowing if I would get the second.

I'm in for the long haul now.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 9:46:58 pm 
I only know how to fish, f^%k, fight, and throw rocks
I only know how to fish, f^%k, fight, and throw rocks
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Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2013 2:27:03 am
Posts: 4094
Location: Virginia
Valiant fan since: Unity
Favorite character: Archer
Favorite title: Imperium
Favorite writer: Dysart Harby; Lente A&A
Favorite artist: Larosa, Suayan, CAFU
Quote:
”Ninja-K #1 is comic book excellence of the highest quality. It is visually stunning with an interesting story and compelling characters that makes it well worth your time.”


http://all-comic.com/2017/ninja-k-1/#6QLbtXg1ze0d0iGm.99

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:01:50 am 
H.A.R.D.E.R. Corps, with Extra Resistance
H.A.R.D.E.R. Corps, with Extra Resistance
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Joined: Thu Oct 04, 2012 11:19:05 am
Posts: 1239
Location: United Kingdom
Valiant fan since: Mid 90's
Favorite character: X-O
Favorite title: X-O
Favorite writer: V-Ditti & Dysart
Favorite artist: Larosa
THIS is what a Ninjak book should be like! Heavy on the Ninja and heavy on the espionage :clap:

Great job on the writing matched with superb art.

5/5 - we’ll done Gage and Giorello for the creative excellence and to Dinesh and the crew on delivering a great first issue :high-five:


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