The Valiant

The Eternal Warrior has protected the
Earth for more than 10,000 years. Master of countless weapons and long
forgotten martial arts, he is guided by the Geomancers – those who speak for
the Earth. During his long watch, the Eternal Warrior has failed three times.
Each time, the Geomancer was killed…and a
new dark age for humanity began. Each time, he was unable to stop The Immortal
Enemy. A horror that appears differently each time it arrives…and whose
seemingly only purpose is to bring disorder and darkness to the world. Now, the
time has come for The Immortal Enemy to return once more.
Writer:
Jeff Lemire
Matt Kindt
Penciler:
Paolo Rivera
Publisher:
Valiant Entertainment
Part of Valiant’s new attempt to rejig it’s
universe, The Valiant miniseries is, I suppose, the first big team
event, even if it’s world trotting events feel small in scale, giving it a
distinctly ‘street level’ narrative. Whatsmore, it’s a series that is all about
setting up the studio’s character Bloodshot, just in time for his new series.
Really, that’s what the entire mini series
is about. Though he starts off as a periphery character, the end of it comes
down to our new Geomancer, (seemingly introduced just in this mini series)
Bloodshot and The Immortal Enemy, a rather interesting foe visually,  given that he takes on the appearance of your
biggest fear. Add to that a face that splits open in the middle to reveal a
fleshy horror beneath and you can see why the writers were happy to include him
in as many scenes as they could.
Otherwise, it’s a very good series. Coming
to this as an outsider for once, the claims of it being ‘great for beginners’
only ring half true, with many of the characters interactions and situations
occurring as if you’ve been reading regular issues for a while. It was easy
enough to pick up and run with it given my familiarity with superhero comics in
general, but I do wonder if someone fresh to it all would quite have the same
experience.
The only thing that rankled a little bit
(and this comes with a BIG SPOILER WARNING) was the death of Kay McHenry, the
geomancer. On it’s own it was a bit odd, given that she’s the point of view
character for the series and serves as our ‘in’ to Valiant universe. But to be
replaced by a mute female character from the future in the last 10 pages of the
series, who literally has no backstory, no dialogue and no characterisation at
all really felt wrong and angered me a little.
That very poor event ruined what was
otherwise a very enjoyable comic. The dialogue and scenes between Bloodshot and
Kay in particular were a treat, with Bloodshot’s ultimate straight man role to
all the crazy events providing a great foil for comedy. If you want a good
primer to Bloodshot before his new series kicks off soon, or enjoy small
character moments within a larger drama this will be for you.
Cover image courtesy of Valiant
Entertainment.
The Valiant mini series is available from
Valiant
Entertainment.


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

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