The sheer amount of blood spatter in this chapter-break illo indicates that Empowered is about to begin heading off in a slightly… different direction with this story. Once again, the spontaneity and flexibility inherent to the series comes into welcome play, here, as I realized yet another time that Empowered can tell pretty much any type of story I feel like telling. As I’ve said before, if this series could only be a wacky comedy, I would have abandoned it long, long ago. In fact, we wouldn’t have even gotten this far, as vol. 2 has already taken strides into different narrative modes, including high-powered action earlier in the book with King Tyrant Lizard and Emp-disguised Ninjette. And before too long, with this volume’s concluding episode, we’ll take the first Empowered stride into emotionally charged storytelling, which will represent a new and very important narrative orientation.
As the Japanese traditional masks and bloodied kusarigama sickle and chain might also indicate, we’re taking a brief detour into ninjutsu-related territory. Stand by for spattery, chopping-intensive, ninja-riffic wackiness, folks!