Super Sikh and the Atma Defenders, created by Jai Nitz with the artistic team of Jethro Morales and Marie Enger, offers something familiar but unique.
Imagine a story that works between the state of reality and deep reality. Raj the protagonist, is your average, everyday American Sikh. He sports a Chicago Cubs baseball cap and lives at home with his family. But when he’s not living this ordinary, average life, he’s doing battle on a deeper plane of existence with the death embodiment of Kaal who is supported by Kaam (Lust), Krobh (Anger), Lobh (Greed), Moh (Attachment), and Hankaar (Ego).
For what reason, it is mostly unclear except for Super Sikh deciding it’s time to gain Kaal’s attention. He accesses this dimension of reality through Yoga meditation, but he is not alone in doing this. Nitz sets up a strong opening sequence with a passive bystander who seems to be the story’s antagonist, someone who observes Super Sikh’s confrontation with these elements of the Sikh hierarchy but remains neither friend nor foe.
Nitz writes a story laden with anthropomorphic ideas reminiscent of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. There is a layered approach to narrative at work here, which is engaging. The exposition is strong. However, the remainder of this super-sized first issue leaves the reader without a clear sense of where the story is going because it introduces new character after new character in a similar fashion.
Aside from that, it’s not an issue that should prevent readers from engaging in this new offering because it holds a lot of promise. Once Nitz gets the second issue up off the ground, the story will probably get going as this current offering is a 0 issue.
The line art by Jethro Morales and colors by Marie Enger are a boon to the density of Nitz’s storytelling, accompanying the philosophical narrative in a way that flows smoothly and seamlessly. In particular, there is some wonderful panel work by Morales that moves the story at a proper pace while capturing and emphasizing the nuanced portions of Nitz’s script.
It’s imaginative artwork with its interpretation of the Sikhist hierarchy in the deep reality state. Some of the early action scenes really shine along with the seamless transition between deep reality and the waking world.
Enger’s contribution on colors helps to develop the exotic and symbolic facets of Nitz’s script with vibrant but tastefully restrained uses of color that fill in the kinesthetic elements of Morales’ line work.
She also captures some of the more drab colors associated with the regular world without making it come off too dull. It’s a delicate balance that she consistently maintains throughout the story.
The Final Word
Overall, Super Sikh and the Atma Defenders is a fine story and worth the read. There seems to be a long run element to it that will pay off for faithful readers. In a landscape littered with half-baked superhero stories, it stands out as a story that won’t disappoint with its unique take on the superhero genre.
Something worth noting is that Super Sikh and the Atma Defenders is available digitally through Amazon Kindle, the outstanding Madefire Comic App, and through Comixology. This provides readers with some interesting choices for reading.
Overall Rating: 8.5 out of 10