Publisher: Valiant Comics
Reviewed by: Jonny Botsch
What happens when an ancient Visigoth warrior gains control of the deadliest and most advanced bio-organic armour in the galaxy and is brought into the future? That is the premise of X-O Manowar.
This has always been one of Valiant's tent pole titles, and for good reason. And now, with the company’s re-launch and re-introduction of the character, they've actually made everything better! Cary Nord's pencils start off harkening back to his Conan days with ancient battles against the Romans and transitions nicely into sci-fi aliens and symbiotic, intelligent weapon suits. Along with the new slick visual style is Robert Venditti's cinematic take on the pacing. This is a book that could be easily adapted to the big screen (and yet is unlikely to ever receive the budget it would require to do it justice).
With X-O’s first arc out in TPB format, Valiant has delivered on its promise of entertaining, high quality books. So, now it's just a matter of how long the new Valiant crew will be able to hold their ship together. The original incarnation of Valiant rode the ‘90s independent wave (a charge lead by Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Image Comics) and managed to garnered industry dominating sales numbers. Even so, Valiant was over in a few short years and has taken the better part of twenty years to come back.
There are few independent publishers who go to the trouble of creating a unified continuity between all of their titles and there are fewer still who succeed. Valiant is that very few. Anyone who is tired of DC's relaunches and Marvel's renumbering should jump on board with Valiant now, as it’s just starting...all over again.