With Kazuya bringing an army of Jacks to Jin’s doorstep, can the youngest Mishima resist the Devil gene long enough to repel his father’s attack?
Writer: Cavan Scott
Artist: Andie Tong
Publisher: Titan Comics
In the second issue of Tekken, Titan’s serialized take on the popular fighting game, we learn a little more about Jin’s struggles to maintain his sanity. For the uninitiated, Jin (arguably the protagonist of the series since it’s third installment) is the scion of the prominent Mishima family, whose great grandfather, grandfather and father have all tried to murder each other (via karate, guns, rockets and sometimes volcanos) several times over. He possess a genetic aberration known as the Devil gene that both gives him supernatural powers (strength, flight, eye lasers) and puts him into a blind murderous rage. Now, as the protagonist, he’s constantly at war with himself to not let his darker side win out and become the dominant personality – unfortunately, he’s the protagonist of a fighting game, which means he’s constantly spin kicking fools.
Now, if you have followed the games from the beginning, you’ll know that Jin was a pretty dominant character in his initial appearance but then sort of got nerfed in later games. The storyline reason was initially said to be the character’s desire to move away from his father’s style of martial arts and toward his mother’s, but I think the Titan series gives a more interesting explanation. As the intro stated, this issue starts with Kazuya Mishima attacking his son’s cadre of fighters and confronting Jin over some mysterious messages he’s said to have been experiencing. Jin, however, refuses to fight his father in any serious context, lest his Devil gene win out. Kazuya keeps hammering the boy in the hopes to draw out his combative side, but Jin resists it as long as he can. I think that’s kind of interesting from a character standpoint, even if that’s totally not what they were doing in the game series.
This is an action-heavy issue, as most of the book deals with the fight between Kazuya’s team and Jin’s, with most characters not named King getting a chance to shine. Nina in particular has sort of become the Black Widow of the Tekken crew, while Yoshimitsu is effectively Snake Eyes. Sadly, King (one of my favorites in the game) not only gets stomped pretty bad by Kazuya, but gets s--t talked to an embarrassing degree as well. I guess with such a short series not every character can look strong, but MAN, no love for the wrestler. Eventually our heroes get away from Kazuya’s squad by blowing up their hideout with Kazuya’s team still inside (along with an unconscious King, so…maybe he’s dead?). The team chases the macguffin to a mysterious Mishima storage facility being guarded by a group of Alisa bots, only to find it has already been taken by someone else.
Artwise, this a mixed outing for Andie Tong. He’s great with action poses and choreography, but is a little flat when it comes to faces and emotional displays. This is most evident when he’s depicting Jin’s devil persona coming out, as the character’s face starts to distend but maintains a blanker face than Keanu Reeves filing his taxes. That being said, the sequences of Kazuya fighting King and Nina are kinetic and strong, so it’s sort of a wash on the artwork.
This is a decent outing for fans of the Tekken games, but isn’t going to do much for casuals looking for a good read. I’m going to call it now, the end of next issue (the third of four) will see the Devil Jin persona come out and threaten the Tekken team. Come back next month to see if I’m wrong.