First, the official description from IDW:
“Serpent’s Shadow,” part 3!
SNAKE EYES continues a deadly game where the rules are known only to him. To prove his renewed loyalty to the Arashikage Clan, he joins a team to kill the new COBRA COMMANDER! But danger lurks for him within the ninja clan with a new betrayal around every corner. ALSO! Zartan makes some interesting new friends.
The tight focus on smaller characters is important to this title. I’m not the most knowledgeable on G.I Joe, but the large scope of the universe often leaves many characters undeveloped or focused on. Its great to see a title take a step back from the Joes, and even Cobra to some extent, and focus on the surrounding characters and organizations.
At its heart, this is still a G.I Joe title. There’s subterfuge and espionage. Cobra, as always, plays a lead role too. Yet the focus on the ninja characters, which have always been around, gives the title a unique appearance amongst its sibling titles. Rather than taking the guns-blazing approach, the moody atmosphere gives the title a unique depth and tone.
The flashbacks in Snake Eyes & Storm Shadow #15, for instance, give great character development. This is contrasted well with the story, both artistically and in the way its written. Its great exposition, highlighting a character that’s not known for talking in an effective and believable manner.
As for the artwork itself, this is standard G.I Joe art. The art is good and consistent. Yet sometimes I wish the G.I Joe team would be more daring. This title, with its focus on ninjas, dark organizations and other seedy realms of the G.I Joe world, could be more experimental. The art certainly captures the moody atmosphere, but it could be bolder.
In summary, this is one of the better examples of the G.I Joe titles. By focusing in on key characters and more concise story lines, its easier to follow, with a greater sense of drama as a result.