Naja

NajaNaja
Author: Bengal, Jean-David Morvan
Publisher: Lion Forge
First Published: August 12, 2014
Genres: Science Fiction
Pages: 256
Format: ARC, eBook
Source: NetGalley

one-half-stars
Synopsis:

Naja is the perfect killer - because she feels nothing. Literally. Her body registers no pain, nor does her heart, coldly executing jobs given to her by her mysterious boss, known only as "Zero." When another killer in Zero's organization targets Naja for elimination, she has no choice but to fall off the grid and seek answers, as bloody as they might be.


My Thoughts

What a shame. The comic had an interesting concept and started off pretty well but in the end was really lacking. Naja is a badass but she has almost no personality. She was the stereotypical ruthless femme fatale and didn’t have much else going for her. The other assassins from Zero’s organization were genuinely interesting and the fights were memorable. I just wish I could have cared more about Naja. The plot drags for the first few volumes and I had wished for a little more from the story – I ended up regretting that wish.

“I became an assassin, not a sadist.”

The more that was revealed, the more it just seemed like torture porn. The sad part is, even after some traumatic experiences from Naja’s past was revealed, I didn’t find myself feeling much more for her character. The comic crashed and burned spectacularly with the final volume honestly leaving me feeling rather angry and disgusted. It seemed to me that the story was almost like a twisted retelling of Romeo and Juliet, tragic star-crossed lovers with a sprinkling of incest. It was disturbing in the worst way possible and I honestly wish I hadn’t finished the series off.

On the bright side, the art style is modern and edgy and very easily one of the best aspects of the comic. The action sequences are fast and bloody and were fun to read. Overall I can’t recommend this one given the weak story, but Bengal’s art is definitely something to admire.


Warnings: violence, abuse, sexually explicit content


About Bengal

Bengal is a French comics creator. Born in 1976 in the Rhône-Alpes region of France, he currently lives and works in Reims, in the Champagne-Ardenne region.

Bengal credits his father for introducing him to comics at a young age, with such classic Franco-Belgian titles as Les Tuniques Bleues (The Blue Tunics), Jérémiah, and The Scrameustache . A fan of both French bandes dessinées and Japanese mangas, his appreciation for these diverse styles is evident in his own work.

Before becoming a writer and illustrator of comics, he worked for four years at the video game developer Darkworks. Bengal’s first solo effort is the manga-inspired High Fantasy Luminae: La dame perdue (The Lost Lady), the first book in what is planned as an ongoing series, was published in 2011.

While much of his work has been published only in France, Bengal’s short story Formidable was included in the first volume of the comics anthology Flight, published in 2004 by Image Comics in the United States.

About Jean-David Morvan

Jean-David Morvan is a French comic author, best known as the creator of the Sillage/Wake series. After studying arts at the Institut Saint-Luc in Brussels, he first tried being a graphic artist but eventually settled for writing instead.

His main series are ‘Spirou and Fantasio’, ‘Sir Pyle’ and ‘Merlin’, all with José Luis Munuera, and ‘Sillage’, with Philippe Buchet.

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