If you want the best and most consistently entertaining monthly books featuring cutting edge writing and art so sharp that it’s not allowed as carry-on luggage, Valiant Comics will scratch that itch. Following a successful relaunch a couple of years ago, Valiant’s universe is simply one of the hottest new brands around. But it’s not a name that everyone is familiar with.
Hell, even long-time fans don’t know what to expect thanks to many tweaks and reboots that have drastically altered familiar characters for the better. It’s never easy jumping into a new comic book universe, especially one that is so intricately connected as the one that Valiant has poured a lot of blood, sweat and tears into lately. But take that plunge, and you might discover a few gems along the way. Gems such as:
One of the best jumping on point available? The Valiant. See, the beauty of Valiant is that they’re massively focused on quality above quantity. A book isn’t rushed to press merely so that the staff can get high off of the sound of a cash register bell being dinged. The Valiant is a crossover that brings together their entire library for one massive tag team of art and scripting from the talent behind the solo books.
It’s the kind of crossover that DC and Marvel wishes that they could pull off, that they’re sadly incapable of doing lately. Think of The Valiant as an all-you-eat buffet of action, plot and stunning art. And when you’re done with that, go check out Book of Death for even more crossover shenanigans.
What would the perfect super-soldier be capable of? Extreme action, resilience and the ability to always get the job done without any questions asked would be ideal traits. But having a human weapon powered by nanites within his blood and has a brain that can be wiped and reprogrammed with fake memories is a definite plus.
That’s Bloodshot, the deadliest soldier alive and a combatant who slowly begins to realises that he cannot trust his own memories as he began a life on the run from a shadowy cabal who wants their property back. Even worse? Bloodshot now finds himself trapped in Manhattan, the populace infected with the same nanites that he carries in his own blood and ready to tear the world apart.
Bloodshot isn’t just violence for the sake of it however, as the man underneath all of those microscopic devices finds himself dealing with the effects of his actions and the fact that he’ll live forever without knowing who he truly is.
Imagine having power. Real actual power that can shape and manipulate the very building blocks of matter itself. Now imagine trying to hold onto your humanity when you’re capable of re-organising reality while experiencing all of time and space unfold at once. That’s maybe too much power for any one human to handle or even control, as Russian cosmonaut Adam Abrams finds himself on the cusp of godhood in a trilogy of books which examine what it means to be human.
Sometimes, a hero isn’t going to save the world. It’s greatest super-villain will. At least that’s what Toyo Harada believes, as he leverages his genius with his Earth-shattering Psiot powers to secretely shape the world around him in pursuit of a utopia that he’ll eventually lead. Imperium is a fascinating dive into the mindset of Harada, as he assembles a team of the very worst villains around to aid him in his quest for global domination.
But you’ll see, it’s for the good of all mankind. We just hope you live long enough to realise that.
Meet Colin King, the coolest human alive. He’s a secret agent billionaire spy, handsome and the world loves him. Did I also mention that he’s a master of unarmed combat in any form, can escape from any situation and he’s a ninja? Ninjak is who you’d be, if your life was governed by Pathfinder rules and your rolled 20s every time. Ninjak is humanity perfected in an imperfect world and capable of anything.
And in a world that is desperately short of Ninja-spies, Ninjak is the right man for any job.
Archer and Armstrong
Who are Archer and Armstrong? Imagine an immortal drunk who finds himself partnered with a teenager whose extremist Christian cult raised him to be their chief assassin. Sounds brutal, right? Not quite, as Archer and Armstrong is a bizarre and surreal comedy starring the most unlikely of partners who find themselves mixed up in all manner of shenanigans every week.
Wrath of the Eternal Warrior
Into every age, a Geomancer is born who will be the voice of the planet. If said Geomancer can even survive long enough to do so that is. That’s where the Eternal Warrior comes in, an immortal figure who protects the Geomancer and has done so numerous times over millenia as his skills have been honed over centuries of combat. The current series shines a spotlight on the warrior known as Gilad Anni-Padda, of his life beyond the blade as he waits for Earth’s latest Geomancer to be reincarnated.
It’s bloody good action, but with a surprising amount of exposition that paints a tragic tale for the Eternal Warrior and his neverending quest.
2000 years from now, New Japan orbits Earth and provides a safe haven for its many inhabitants through the form of an avtar known only as Rai. Or so you’d think, as beneath the surface of this cosmic city a sinister plot is unfolding. Manipulated by the guardian of New Japan, Father, the latest version of Rai finds himself caught in a war between his homeland and the surface below. It’s a cyberpunk tale alright, but Rai is also bolstered by some of the very best art around as Clayton Crain’s visuals are the textbook definition of epic.
Superheroes are meant to inspire, to make us aspire to be better people. They’re symbols, modern day myths which we latch onto. But sometimes, we want to find comfort with a larger than life character who is also down to Earth. With Faith, that very ideal is easily recognised. She’s the content creator of a generation who live through social media, a web guru who balances life as on online journalist with a career as a Psiot who has the ability to fly as the hero Zephyr.
Faith’s life isn’t easy, but it’s that very humanity that propels her skyward to do some good in the world that makes her one of the best damn heroes around.
I…haven’t actually read this book. My monthly budget for comics can only go so far dammit. But you know what? I’ve heard rave reviews about this title so far, so I’ll eat one of my trendy T-shirts if this turns out to be untrue.
Last Updated: November 14, 2016