Review by Nolan P. Smith
(Victor Valley)—Valiant Entertainment has been delivering some of the best comics out there since returning in 2012. We have seen heroes like X-O Manowar, Bloodshot, Quantum and Woody, and more, but with modern day twists. With the release of The Valiant #1, the company aims to up the ante once again with a comic that kicks off their Valiant Next movement.
Written by Jeff Lemire & Matt Kindt and with art by the Eisner Award winning artist Paolo Rivera, The Valiant #1 has the Valiant Universe on its shoulders as the premiere book for Valiant Next, and it exceeds expectations. This is a jumping on point of a mini series features a host of Valiant heroes as they face something that has lived for thousands of years. With this issue, the focus is on Gilad, also know as the Eternal Warrior. He has fought for 10,000 years, seen empires and kingdoms rise and crumble, but there is one thing that has thwarted him at every turn: the Immortal Enemy.
The monstrous villain has destroyed several Geomancers under Gilad’s protection throughout the years. A geomancer is one chosen by the Earth to protect it, with powers in tune with the planet. Gilad has served and protected the geomancers throughout the ages, with only a few failures at the hands of the Immortal Enemy. Now, in modern times, there is a new geomancer, Kay McHenry, who is in grave trouble as the villain has once again risen.
Gilad is not alone this time, as there are several heroes from the Valiant Universe here. That includes Armstrong, the immortal brother of Gilad who hates to fight, the killing machine Bloodshot and more. But will they be enough to stop something that has survived for this long? This issue is a perfect starting point, as we see Gilad throughout the ages, fighting this evolving monstrosity. It’s a great introduction to the Valiant Universe, and there has never been a better time to see what Valiant has to offer.
Lemire has been on fire in the last few years, as his work on Animal Man and Green Arrow is nothing less than fantastic. His co-writer, Matt Kindt, is another massive rising star, as his book, MIND MGMT, is a superbly executed piece of modern comic history. Rivera brings the story to life like only he can, as we see a fun, vibrant action comic, laced with laughs and character development. I can’t recommend The Valiant #1 enough, as it is a landmark for the modern age of comics, and is opening the door to what is sure to be a Golden Age for Valiant Entertainment.