Okay so I decided to check out some Valiant comics (specifically trades) to see if I could find something I liked...now that I no longer give Marvel any of my hard earned 'dollars' I have some extra cash on hip.
I'm generally into top tier superhero action (Thor, Supes, Hulk etc.) but it wasn't exactly clear from the blurb on Valiant's website who the powerful heroes were and weren't. In fact I didn't really like their website at all. I knew they were no longer making Solarr (presumably the closest thing to Superman they had) because of licensing issues.
I decided to stump up for the Valiant: a self-aggrandizingly named team consisting of most of the main heroes (so I could gauge which I liked) and I also bought Divinity 1 & 2 since they went on about the newest uber threat/hero...and the reviews on amazon said it was good*.
The three books all contained 4 issues worth of content so they were a bit flimsier than the usual trade (although Valiant comics seem to have more pages than typical Marvel/DC comics), but in fairness they were relatively inexpensive, so swings and roundabouts.
...The Eternal Warrior keeps failing throughout history to protect the life of the
Christ-like figure Geomancer from Death the Immortal Enemy. Now the Immortal Enemy has returned but in this modern age of superheroes do they now have the firepower to stop the unstoppable...?
Good stuff (story): Easily the best of the bunch. An exciting tale that, once it gets going (after some backstory) keeps up a good pace. The characterization was interesting enough even though I had no prior familiarity with them. The resolution was good.
Good stuff (art): The artwork is lovely, some nice imaginative touches like fairytale panels and these nightmare segments and the villain was kinda cool.
Bad stuff (story): The villain falls into the category of one of those threats the heroes can't seriously hurt, but SO MUCH of the book involves heroes fighting the villain. Now don't get me wrong I like action in my comics and for the most part its cool action, but ultimately it feels a tad redundant.
Bad stuff (art): Nitpicking (since the art was generally good), there were too many splash pages that were simply characters posing rather than important parts of the story. Also the colouring seemed overly dark in tone.
...In a nutshell "What if the Fantastic Four were only three and Russian Cosmonauts instead of Americans"...oh and they all gain the power of Molecule 'Men' after contact with something 'cosmic'. This book deals with the return of the first of the cosmonauts.
Good stuff (story): It adds a few choice moral dilemmas into the mix.
Good stuff (art): The artwork is very nice and has a more varied colour tone than the Valiant trade reviewed above which seemed very dark.
Bad stuff (story): Holy smokes, its quagmire pacing with the first half of the book being pure backstory, set-up and exposition dumping. Then when the other heroes finally show up to duke it out with Divinity himself we get to realise (as with the Villain in the Valiant) that he's one of those threats the heroes can't actually hurt; except here the action is totally lacklustre. Totally lacks drama since no one is seemingly under threat.
Bad stuff (art): No real complaints, a few too many big posing panels but with a totally new character I can overlook that.
Overall: 3/10; The media blurb on the cover says "The best new superhero of 2015" but I didn't think it was good, nor would I necessarily describe it as a superhero book - its more like the media quote on the back that says "High Concept Sci-fi." Its occasionally interesting but rarely exciting.
...The second cosmonaut of the 'Fantastic Three' returns to Earth, but she's a hardline old-skool commie (whereas the first guy was a marxist hippie).
Good stuff (story): Slightly better paced than the first Divinity book.
Good stuff (art): The artwork is good.
Bad stuff (story): Okay so we've had a fight with a villain who couldn't be defeated/injured (in the Valiant); a fight with a hero who can't be defeated/injured (in Divinity) and now we have a fight between a hero AND a villain, neither of whom can be defeated/injured. Once we realise that, any drama evaporates
Needless to say Valiant seem to love a good "lets Deus Ex Machina our way out of this".
Bad stuff (art): Maybe could have made more of the reality warping/time travelling battle but it was okay I guess.
Overall: 5/10, If you believe actions should have consequences then this ain't the book for you.
One good book, one bad and one in the middle, although none were what I'd call classic superhero fare...however, maybe that's what Valiant are going for?
I'll likely check out another Valiant title (possibly X-O Manowar).
Anyone read these or other Valiant titles and care to chip in/comment?