Book of Death #2

A new dark age of the Valiant Universe draws nearer as the events foretold in the Geomancer’s BOOK OF DEATH unfold!

Convinced the unnatural disasters tearing our world apart are a direct result of the new Geomancer’s arrival, the combined forces of the Valiant Universe are forced to confront the Eternal Warrior about his new charge. But to prevent civilization from falling into a new Dark Age, the Eternal Warrior won’t go down without a fight! Valiant architect Robert Venditti (X-O MANOWAR) and rising star Robert Gill (ARMOR HUNTERS: HARBINGER) bring you the next chapter in the summer blockbuster that promises to alter the Valiant Universe as you know it! Plus: new visions of the future that awaits – illustrated by superstar artist Doug Braithwaite (IMPERIUM)!

Writer:
Robert Venditti
Artist:
Robert Gill
Doug Braithwaite
Publisher:
Valiant Entertainment

An interesting point to make about the Valiant universe is that all views of the future of it shows devastation and the near annihilation of humanity which occurs in a inevitably cyclical fashion. The reader knows this, which means that the comics have to be all about the characters. In effect, it’s rarely the end of the world that we are meant to care about, merely the end of the characters’ own worlds.

Which is why issue two succeeds a lot more than issue one. It pulls back on the world ending event itself to focus on the characters and by doing so gives us not only character building moments, but action scenes that reinforce them and teach us a bit more about each of them.

Drawing back to a smaller scale seems to have played to Robert Gill’s strengths as well, as his linework seems to be utilised to great effect and his anatomy less all over the place than last issue. Doug Braithwaite’s futuristic scenes are far and away more stylish and draw the eye, but they seem so out of mesh with the rest of the comic. It’s clearly intended, a child’s take on half remembered myth of people she has barely seen. The style is just so different though that it makes you look down on Gill’s work which is shame as what they are doing is far more subtle.

All of the characters in Gills section carry themselves differently, move and attack in a way that reflects their background and combat style. The Eternal Warriors elaborate planning to defeat the rest of Unity is a real highlight, as every assured step he takes extrudes the confidence someone who believes he has won the battle before any combatant arrived on the field.

Full of good character fights and small moments that will keep fans turning the page, its only real let down is the mentions of the event itself! A real improvement on the first issue, I would like to read an ongoing series written in this style.

Book of Death #2 is available from Valiant Entertainment

Geek-o-Rama received a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. All thoughts, comments and opinions are those of the individual reviewer.

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