Silverwolf’s Den: X-O Manowar Volume 2: Enter Ninjak

X-O Manowar Vol 2

It’s been awhile since I’ve reviewed any comics published by rising star Valiant Entertainment, but today’s article is long overdue. Since most of my Valiant reading is reserved for trade paperbacks, I’m forced to wait a few months between each installment. Today, I’m here to review the second volume of X-O Manowar. I looked at the first volume a few months back and loved it. How Aric’s next adventure measure up?

X-O Manowar Volume 2: Enter Ninjak finds Aric of Dacia on 21st Century Earth. Though he’s escaped from the Vine and taken the mighty Armor of Shanhara, Aric cannot find a moment’s peace. Sleeper agents of the Vine, planted on Earth long ago, learn of Aric’s presence and resolve to retake the Manowar Armor. One agent in particular has ties to MI-6, dispatching the organization’s top agent, Ninjak, to defeat Aric and reclaim the armor. What will happen when Earth’s foremost espionage and weapon’s specialist comes in contact with Aric’s super suit and Visigoth brutality?

Ninjak vs. Aric

Aric gets ambushed by Ninjak. The start of one of the many awesome fights in this comic.

This collection of X-O Manowar Issues #5-8 can be described in one word: fantastic. From the first page to the last, it never stops the mad rush of awesomeness. The fight scenes are totally badass, definitely in the top tier of comic book action today. Artist Lee Garbett nails not only the action shots, but also character designs. Meanwhile the story, straight from the pen of Demon Knights writer Robert Venditti, is great. This trade paperback could’ve easily just been a series of fun battles, but Venditti ensures that there’s a reason for every action, and hints at plot threads to come. When things come to a head for Aric, and the rest of Earth for that matter, only dire consequences can follow.

What’s the best part of this trade? One word: Ninjak. After just a few short issues, there’s a new character in the running for my favorite comic book heroes. A quick and easy description: imagine if James Bond was a ninja. That’s really all you need. Ninjak has enough gadgets to make Batman jealous, a fighting style that makes Spider-Man look boring, and enough witty one liners to make anyone crack a smile (well, except Aric). Though he’s not the main character of the comic, his larger role is definitely welcome, and it’d be cool to see him get a solo series.

Ninjak completing a mission in style.

Ninjak completing a mission in style.

It’s hard to find anything negative about X-O Manowar Volume 2: Enter Ninjak. The art and writing are both solid, proving once again that Valiant is doing all the right things in the world of comic publishers. Honestly, if I had to pick something, it’d be the fact that this comic isn’t a good jumping on point. All in all, I encourage everyone to pick up this thrilling series, and I eagerly await the trade of the next arc “Planet Death.”


-amazing battle scenes

-great story, with many interesting plot threads established

-Ninjak is awesome


-hard to follow for those who haven’t read Volume 1




Brett Simon is a twenty-three year old comic enthusiast. He wants to see Ninjak fight Shadowman in the near future.

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  1. Pingback: X-O Manowar #17 Review | Moar Powah!

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