Writer: Matt Kindt
Art: Doug Braithwaite
Color: Brian Reber
Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Publisher: VALIANT ENTERTAINMENT (March 2016)
It is the final battle in the Deadside as Ninjak and Punk Mambo work hard to complete their mission. Yet, the Shadowman stands in their way. Can Ninjak calm the once heroic Shadowman or is Jack and his Loa too far gone?
Braithwaite’s brilliant art is just magnificent throughout all this. The panel work is solid from the word go. The near cinematic style really is shown in its potential as the battle between the Shadowman and Ninjak looks and feels grandiose just by looking at it. Braithwaite pulls out all the stops and Reber makes sure that Braithwaite’s clean, detailed line work not only looks wonderful, but allows it to really help give the right mood of grit that the Deadside has. The battle is brutal and Braithwaite makes it look both brutal and beautiful with each line of detail. The emotion and the scope of this battle is truly given life here. Ryp and Arreola do the same with their wonderful and twisted ending to the Legend of the Magpie. The grit an dirty of the Deadside is laid bare as Ryp’s detailed line work makes it all come to life beautifully. And Arreola’s colors continue to bring vibrance to Ryp’s work.
Kindt’s writing is top notch here. He makes sure the plot gets tried up with both stories. We get closure on the main storyline while leaving threads for the future, but the battle between Ninjak and Shadowman was quite definitive. Kindt keeps the final part of Operation: Deadside thrilling, allowing the characters to have a knock’em down fight while still building on their character. Meanwhile, in the final Legend of Magpie, it is truly a character piece as to how far down Jack Boniface has gone and gives us the truth about the Magpie, the mystical ropes, Shadowman’s Loa and how much control they have over Jack himself. Everything ties up rather well.
There was no real missteps in this issue except it would be Jack himself. The major revelation this issue provides does add depth to the character. The reveal of it was both shocking … and a let down. I can say objectively that the reveal makes a lot of sense. At the same time, there was a sense of let down because of where they left the character. I know this is more of a personal gripe but the revelation is shocking … because its predictable. That was the only real false note in an otherwise flawless performance.
The final part of both Operation Deadside and Legend of the Magpie delivered in spades. There was wonderful character developments for all the main players involved. The final battle was quite uniquely intimate and epic at the same time. And the art in both tales were truly amazing. I really solid ending. The revelation of Shadowman was a bit of a let down, but only a little bit. The overall body of work was still amazing.