Synopsis: Ninjak is always several steps ahead, but in order to cure himself of the deadly mystical parasite, he must rely on his future self to solve the issue. Many years in the future, Ninjak must work with Gilad (a.k.a. the Eternal Warrior) to stop a dangerous enemy from accessing an otherworldly supercomputer and gaining unlimited knowledge and magical power. The same supercomputer that contains the cure for the terrible deadside parasite that endangers Ninjak’s younger self.
Review: Ninjak #21 starts off to a bit of a rocky start. This is not necessarily a terrible thing, but it takes some mental gymnastics to wrap one’s head around it all. In order to find out a how to cure himself of the deadside parasite that has infected him, Ninjak goes into a form of hyper meditation to enlist his future self to find a cure. This is comic book logic at its highest. Once you get past the conceit of the issue (really? hyper meditation? alright…), the fun really begins. Ninjak takes on fiery archangels with all of the poise and deadly ability that readers have come to expect from titular character. The endgame of the issue is a showdown with Dr. Silk who has tapped into the Deadside Intelligence Mechanism, and this is where the issue really shines.
The art team for Ninjak had the difficult task of portraying what a magical supercomputer would look like. Spoiler alert: Steampunk. The Deadside Intelligence Mechanism looks archaic and labyrinthine. Giving the system an antiquated look with levers, punch cards, and pneumatic tubes really mixes the occult with an industrial feel. In a world that seems devoid of any beauty, this looks gorgeous, and it adds a level of authenticity to the tale.
If you haven’t been following Ninjak, jumping in now may seem a bit late, but this issue has demonstrated that going back and reading the series is warranted. The ending of this story arc was bitter-sweet, and I think it gave us an ending that felt satisfactory. It is a defining moment for the character. And although….hyper meditation?!?, the issue was overall satisfying.