REVIEW: Silk #4 Is All About Saya Ishii’s Past and Present

Kasha grabs Saya

Until now, not much has been known about the current Silk antagonist Saya Ishii. She is Japanese, the current CEO of the tech-based company Fujinet, and she has a brother named Max, who happens to be Cindy Moon’s current therapist. Now, with the reveal that her father is the classic Spider-Man villain Silvermane, Silk#4 finally explores Saya Ishii’s past and juxtaposes that with her present-day meeting with the cat demon Kasha.

Silk #4

Maurene Goo (writer), Ian Herring (colorist), VC’s Ariana Maher (letterer), Takeshi Miyazawa (artist)
Marvel Comics
June 23, 2021

Silk swings away from Silvermane

The issue opens with Cindy Moon meeting Silvermane at an abandoned building; he then proceeds to explain how he met Saya’s tech-savvy mother Matsuko and how Saya developed daddy issues and tech expertise. Ian Herring’s yellows and grey colors stand out in the flashback pages, emphasizing Saya’s lackluster life through dull colors with few bright spots.

Speaking of Saya Ishii’s past and her dad, Silvermane reads as a pompous, cold-hearted asshole. This is further cemented when Ariana Maher’s lettering emphasizes statements such as “I was testing her. Didn’t know if a spoiled girl like her who was good with computers could handle it.” Even Cindy remarks how Silvermane couldn’t even win “Father of The Moment,” let alone “Father of The Year.”

Silvermane not only left Saya and her mother before she was born but also didn’t meet Saya until she was sixteen years old. Although I pity Saya’s mother a little, I didn’t like how she put her tech company before her daughter’s wishes, even if Silvermane kept Matsuko’s company alive. Saya Ishii’s past certainly screams “villain origin story,” especially once it is revealed that she was made to “intern” for her father’s subpar criminal tech company.

Young Saya watches her father threaten a man
Silvermane explains how Saya was as an intern

Given that Saya Ishii had such a turbulent past, one can’t help but wonder what her intentions are in the present. While Cindy is meeting with Silvermane, Saya is confronting the cat demon Kasha after suspecting foul play, only to find Kasha summoning a cat demon god. As a result, the two battle it out a bit, allowing for an exciting showcase of Saya Ishii’s superpowers, which were hinted at in the previous issue.

To sum up Saya Ishii’s powers, she can act as a human battery for these small drones with her and transform those drones into different weapons. One page shows Saya turning some of the drones into an arrow; later, she transforms it into a dagger. I want to call her a technomancer, but I’m not sure if her powers just affect those drones or all technology in general. Given that she uses a smartphone to control the drones, it’s likely that Saya’s powers are only effective with certain tech, maybe only ones specifically made by Saya.

Saya Ishii pierces Kasha with a dagger using her powers
Saya Ishii showcases her technology powers

Nonetheless, Saya’s powers certainly make her a formidable opponent, especially against someone like Kasha. As in the previous issue, Herring’s colors and Maher’s lettering work in tandem to illustrate Saya and Kasha’s fight, with greenish yellows representing Kasha’s threatening aura and light blues and purples for Saya’s. Although Saya retreats from battle, I like how there is a subtle hint to her feelings towards her father as Kasha and Saya trade blows. Kasha snidely remarks, “I don’t know why you’re trying to be like your two-bit criminal father,” and Saya replies that she misunderstands their relationship.

I think that Saya is trying to surpass her father by combining both her mother’s tech and her father’s criminal connections. I believe that Saya is trying to prove that she is stronger than her mother and father ever were. However, this is purely speculation, especially since Saya has an angry cat demon to deal with right now. It seems her unresolved daddy issues will have to wait for another issue or two.

Since Kasha is too much for Saya to handle herself, it seems that she will be teaming up with Silk. The final page of Silk #4 shows Saya making an unannounced appearance in Cindy’s bedroom, asking for help. I’m excited to see where this leads, especially since Cindy is supposed to keep Silvermane’s whereabouts a secret from Saya, and Saya doesn’t know that Max is Cindy’s therapist. With secrets to hide and their respective abilities, the potential for drama and action in Saya and Silk’s team-up is high.