This edition of Thursday’s Valiant Effort is dedicated to the new jumping on points as well as going over several of the mini-series that are still going on in the Valiant Universe. Every company tries to come up with some way so that new readers feel they can start reading a series without having to go back and purchase an entire run of back issues. Is Valiant going to relaunch every title? No, they don’t think, as do some other companies, that readers will get confused by the higher numbers. Valiant understands that stories go on. We, as readers and fans, should be willing to jump into something and explore back as far as we want. Pick up some trade paperbacks at your LCS or buy the back issues.
Or, better yet, check out my reviews and see what you have been missing. For now, let’s review some comics!
X-O Manowar #0 – The first of the new jumping on points for new readers. Take a trip back to the beginning and see young Aric as he goes to fight his first real battle against the Roman Hordes. This is an interesting story that delves into the feelings and thoughts of a man who is more than just a weapon, a gun to be pointed at some threat and launched. All the power that Aric of Dacia wields because of the alien armor he wears is nothing compared to the power of the true leader that Aric of Dacia is and has become. He may have lost many of his people, but he has a new people now, the people of Earth, and he will protect them as if they were his family. Robert Venditti draws us ever closer to this key icon of the Valiant Universe. My Rating: 5/5
The Death Defying Doctor Mirage #2 (of 5) – This is a great supernatural adventure series so far. Lots of mystery and cool mystical stuff going on. Last issue, Doctor Mirage stepped into the afterlife after meeting a being called the visitor that was a prisoner in the house of a man that she was supposed to do a job for. Now, she is wandering the afterlife, or the Night Garden, looking for the Pale Mistress. Jen Van Meter has created a very intriguing story and it has kept me interested so far. I love Roberto De La Torre’s art in this, as well, providing that texture that is perfect for the mystical stories. My Rating: 4.5/5
Unity #0 – This an interesting new twist to the history of the Unity Team. From the inside front cover – “X-O Manowar, Ninjak, Livewire, and Eternal Warrior — together, they are Unity, this generation’s first super team. But they are not the first group to take this name. During World War I, the Eternal Warrior led a band of heroes known as Unit Y.” So, this is the story of Unit Y and how it is the origin of the Unity Team. Matt Kindt brings us this story of the fate of that original team. This tale definitely opens us up to the beginnings of the mysterious history of the Unity Team, also known as Unit Y. Were there other members since World War I? Did the original member survive somehow? Maybe this will all play into the future of this book. My Rating: 4.5/5
Q2: The Return Of Quantum And Woody #1 (of 5) – Let’s take a leap into the future of one of the best super teams in all of comics. But first, a little history, as we see young Eric and Woody out in the woods trying to find the lake but running into a dead bank robber, or something. This is an interesting look into their past that sets the stage for a future we are not yet familiar with. Woody shows up, after he is saved by a guy dressed like Quantum, but not Eric. Who are these people that call themselves Quantum and Woody? I don’t know, buy they have a really cool tank with multiple stealth modes. Very awesome. I can’t wait to see the next issue of this new mini-series. My Rating: 5/5
The Delinquents #3 (of 4) – More Quantum and Woody! Now infused with Archer and Armstrong. The two teams, holding two halves of a map tattooed on the skin of an old man’s butt, are on the trail of the hobo treasure. Unfortunately, they got a little sidetracked at Old McDonald’s Farm, which is not as fun and friendly as you might think. Under attack by Mr. Meat, a strange creature that is part animal and part plant, the teams find themselves in a losing battle. So, it’s goat to the rescue. Will the Delinquents find their way or spend the rest of this issue and the next in a drunken stupor traveling from one house of ill repute to the next? This issue is a lot of fun, all the comedy and hijinks we have come to expect from both Archer and Armstrong and Quantum and Woody. I can’t wait for the next issue. My Rating: 5/5
Harbinger: Omegas #3 (of 3) – Wrapping up a major chapter in the story of the Renegades battles against the Harbinger Corporation and, more specifically, Toyo Harada. The issue begins with Harada and Peter Stanchek at the bottom of a river locked in combat… except they are at the bottom of two different rivers. Very interesting statement about how strong the connection is between the two, but also two see the differences between them. Harada snaps out of this and is right back leading his team against the troops as he continues to battle for domination of Africa and solidifies his standing as a super power in the world. Will Peter snap out of his drug induced stupor in time to stop Harada from destroying the foundations of governments around the world? I guess we better hope so. You will have to read this one to find out. Then be ready to pick up the new series, Imperium. My Rating:5/5
Archer & Armstrong #25 – Like the other series that have hit #25, this issue takes time to really explore and celebrate Archer and Armstrong. Although, I think we can all agree that Armstrong never needs any help celebrating. The first story is an important turning point in the story of Obadiah Archer. Interesting information about the future of the sects. Also, there is a really good preview of Archer & Armstrong: The One Percent #1. Fred Van Lente, John Layman, Ray Fawkes, Justin Jordan and Rafer Roberts, and Joey Esposito get in the act with a time hopping, beer chugging, existential discussion that even has Armstrong buying himself a beer, literally. A great issue and well worth the read. My Rating: 5/5
That’s it for now. I have a few more books to go to get us caught up, but this was a good stopping point so you don’t get bored. All this great stuff from Valiant every month and I want you to know about it all. Stay tuned for more and read Valiant First.