Shinku #2


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Shinku #2


  • Words: Ron Marz
  • Art: Lee Moder
  • Inks: Matthew Waite
  • Colors: Michael Atiyeh
  • Publisher: Image Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Jul 6, 2011

Shinku, who wears a permanent scowl with high-arching eyebrows at all times, violently slays vampire after vampire in an attempt to get to Asano, who is responsible for the death of her clan over 400 years ago. This second installment has more blood, more action, and more vampires, but still makes some of the same mistakes as the first.

As Shinku sneaks into a high-security building, her ninja skills prove to be a visual treat, especially given Moder’s talent for showing a character in motion. However, once she surprises two vampires in an elevator, the lack of development of Marz’s vampire/samurai universe begins to show.

Shinku cuts the throat of one vamp and then kicks the gun out of the other’s hand. Why would a vampire go for a gun? They’re shown to have sharp claws, muscular bodies, and long pointy teeth, so why not just lunge at her and be done with it, especially in close quarters? Also unexplained is what these particular vampires are vulnerable to; she mentions sunlight, which is standard in vampire lore, but she manages to kill the first two vampires by simply stabbing them enough to kill a normal person. If these enemies are so powerful that they eradicated her entire clan, then why can she cut through a building full of them so easily?

Regardless, she continues to tear through the building killing vampires with sword swipes and throwing-stars, eventually covering her face completely in blood, which brings up a question about her costume design that colorist Atiyeh should have piped up about: why make her jumpsuit red and black knowing she would often be covered in buckets of blood? No distinction is made between the red of her clothes and the red of the vampire blood, so she ends up looking like a messy blur for most of the issue. She should've learned from the first issue to always bring a towel.

The eventual meeting with Asano proves to be anticlimactic; he comes off as a one-dimensional villain with no compelling reason for the reader to personally loathe him like Shinku apparently does. Equally bland is Davis, who spends most of the issue out of sight, but shows up in the end to take a blood sample saying, “Don’t worry. Not my first time handling a hazardous sample” as if that’s supposed to mean something.

These logical mishaps aside, Marz does manage to create a few humorous moments that point out the absurdity of Shinku’s gory attack on the vampire base. These moments offer a reprieve since they are something that was intended to be laughed at.

Hopefully as of next issue, some of the story particulars will be explained so the series gains some needed depth.

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