Review – Unity #1

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Publisher: Valiant
Writer: Matt Kindt
Artist: Doug Braithwaite
Release Date: 13th November 2013

I’d like to preface this review by stating that, shamefully enough, I’m not really familiar with any of the characters who make up the backbone of this event. Sure, I know some of the names and have an vague idea about basic bios, powers, etc., but my in-depth knowledge of the Valiant universe is sorely lacking.

That said, even with my almost non-existent knowledge, this issue serves as a perfect jumping-on point to the world of Valiant and, based on what I’ve read here, I’m kicking myself for not getting involved sooner.

Everything I needed to know beforehand is handily covered on the interior page, laying the groundwork for the event effectively without having to waste precious page space on otherwise pointless exposition.  In a few marvellously succinct panels, I found myself firmly aware of the history of the ongoing situation, as well as the urgency of the immediate threat.

I should also stress that for the purposes of this comic, continuity means absolutely nothing to me.  I have no point of reference to work from, so I can’t say if liberties have been taken with characters or if previous events are being forgotten, twisted or ignored.  I’m coming in completely fresh, looking for these characters to be established right here and now before my eyes.  And in that respect, Unity #1 did exactly what I needed it to.

Matt Kindt’s writing is extremely sharp, and his tense dialogue and scene-setting manages to hammer home the urgency of the situation, particularly during the first attempted assault on X-O Manowar.  Braithwaite’s artwork also rises to the occasion here, and comes across as solid, detailed, expressive and utterly cinematic in its approach.

There was one brief point where the whole thing began to feel a little anticlimactic, almost like “wait, is this it?”, only for the book to suddenly and decisively turn my expectations on their heads in one extremely memorable scene.  Brilliant stuff.

Overall, this served as an eye-opening first foray into the world of Valiant, and a tremendously compelling first chapter in what promises to be a sprawling, epic tale.  Well worth checking out.

Rating: 8/10.

The writer of this piece was: 576682_510764502303144_947146289_nCraig Neilson (aka Ceej)
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