Ninja Kaidan #1
Eric Palicki words
Lucas Meyer art
Michael Bartolo colors
Dezi Sienty letters
From Blackbox Comics
Is your house haunted? Do you wish you had sexy, full-bodied armor that could let you fight those uninvited, spectral anomalies? Crazy. This comic is made for you. Peep the solicit:
Not even a lifetime of martial arts training and years as an elite soldier could prepare Yuki Snow for this newest challenge: CEO of his deceased father's company. Suddenly thrust into a leadership role at YOKAI Consolidated, Yuki finds himself taking over his father's pet project, the mysterious Kaidan armor, which would allow its wearer to see, speak to, and touch ghosts.
Look, I think everyone and their “father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate” knows I dig Eric Palicki’s comics, but Ninja Kaidan just hits different. I need everyone to know how awesome it is.
How awesome is it, you ask? Well, I’m glad you’re reading the BUZZstack, baybee, because I’m about to tell you!
Firstly, as I’m sure a lot of you know, premier issues are tricky bears to wrestle with. You have, typically, under 30 pages to set the grounds for your story, introduce likable characters, and secure a need to buy the second issue. That’s a hard thing to do, but in Ninja Kaiden, these talented creatives make it look easy.
I think a lot of that has to do with how easy Ninja Kaiden is on the eyes.
It’s a gorgeous book. You can’t deny it. The opening full-page splash sets you up for ocular excitement. Lucas Meyer and Michael Bartolo make some damn-fine looking panels. Speaking of damn-fine, Ninja Kaiden’s protagonist, Yuki Snow, is a tasty snack. As you’ll see if you read this issue (and you better be reading this issue because it’s amazing), Yuki looks real good in, and out, of his armor.
The panels plastered to these pages are rich. There was a lot of time spent in each moment of every scene. I love the attention to detail that Meyer pencils into every page, and Bartolo colors it all extremely well. It’s intensely vibrant, and that gives it a vibe that you wouldn’t typically expect in a haunted house narrative. I was expecting grainy, moody imagery with a darker, haunting palette, but even the spectral entities are washed in a spectacular fuschia, which is a wonderful juxtaposition to the horrifying character work Meyer provides. These artists are a stellar reminder that it’s great to be surprised and shake up the normative, and Palicki’s script is just as epic and unafraid to shake, rattle, and roll.
There’s a lot of questions I want answered, and it’s those questions, atop an absolutely bonkers premise, that will lead me into the purchase of a second issue. I want to know more about the relationship between Yuki and his deceased father. I want to know more about this armor. The armor’s technological origin story was enough to get me excited, but I have a feeling there are some secrets Palicki will keep hidden until it becomes narratively relevant. Like any new tech, I’m imagining there are some dangers. And, like any haunted house story, I’m guessing there are some ghastly consequences approaching as well.
The letterwork by Dezi Sienty rounds out the poetry of perfection Ninja Kaidan provides. As a reader, there are no disappointments following any turn of the page. I’m also a big fan of the font used. Again, it’s easy on the eyes and stands out amongst the competition.
Everything about this comic sings to me. I love the spooks, and I really love when the spooks seamlessly blend into an equally intriguing sci-fi narrative. There’s a million-and-one places this comic could take me, and I can’t wait to have that veil lifted.
Trust in the Buzz, folks: this isn’t like anything you’ve read before, and you definitely want to board the vessel that’s going to take you into the unknown.
Ninja Kaidan is that vessel.
And now for some housekeeping…
Buzz Buzz, Baybees, Episode 42 is live!
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