X-O Manowar is one of those comics that’s been on my ‘to read’ list, but I’ve never actually managed to get around to it. It’s thankful, then, that this issue – the first in Valiant’s latest company-wide 18-issue crossover, convenient titled ‘Armor Hunters’ – is rather welcoming in that respect.
In terms of an opening salvo, this is fairly spectacular, both in scene-setting and in terms of action, serving as a pretty excellent jumping on point for those of us indeed less familiar with Valiant’s super-hero line-up. By the end of the book – having only previously familiarised myself with Rai in their colourful cast of hero-types – I was immediately up to speed on what’s going on in the world, and that’s a massive plus for Vendetti’s writing and careful pacing.
The art is excellent – particular in the first few panels, where Braithwaite’s allowed to do some fairly cool things with the titular Armor Hunters as they cut through a group of soldiers with reckless abandon. The characters are perhaps a little broadly drawn and generic – though I can’t be certain if that’s endemic of the characters themselves, or simply from Vendetti trying to keep things accessible, but it’s not exactly to the book’s detriment, and he rather successfully heightens the stakes come the end of it, irrespective of how generically heroic our hero Alric is.
Honestly, even though I’ve no experience of these before, this seems like it’s set to be a fun-as-hell crossover – the previews of the next few issues are equally well drawn and written, and it looks like we’re set to see a situation that escalates magnificently.
The writer of this piece was: Ross Sweeney
Ross tweets from @Rostopher24