X-O Manowar has been a pretty stellar comic since its reboot back in 2012. Now he gets an event of all events wherein he fights an alien group of hunters who kill those who wear the X-O armor. Sick.
Let’s see how the first issue of this summer event is shall we? Is it good?
Armor Hunters #1 (Valiant Entertainment)
The X-O Manowar armor is held by a man from ancient times (Aric of Dacia) who was taken from Earth along with his people; they were made prisoners by an alien race named The Vine. Aric took the armor and beat their asses, but once back on Earth he and his people weren’t looked at to kindly on when he tried to take back his homelands located in Europe.
Aric was eventually given a huge swath of Nebraska and all was right in the world… until a group of alien hunters come along with a gigantic robotic spaceship to kill his ass. They’ve been killing X-O Manowar suits across the universe and they want our planet’s version hard. Can’t end well can it?
This issue opens with a very good stinger of sorts with the hunters arriving at a secret weapons holding area in Russia. They quickly destroy a group of soldiers with viciousness that gives a clear impression this event is going to be deadly serious. There’s some gory shots here that push boundaries and this helps give the story some gravitas. Writer Robert Venditti imbues a good pace on this script, with just enough of our hero, the villains and the U.S. government. The players are set up just enough for newcomers and the ending sets the stage for one hell of a threat on Earth.
That’s a big robot.
The art by Doug Braithwaite is phenomenal. The opening action sequence is tense and believable and the gravity of every situation is felt thoroughly. There’s a very necessary need for resistance given how clearly the threat is established here. So far Manowar has basically over powered everyone he’s faced — but now more than ever he’s facing something, a global something, that makes it difficult to believe even he’ll come out on top. Due to the fear on the faces and utter destruction in the imagery I believe it.
I wonder if it’s a Zord?
Is It Good?
What a great first issue to kick things off on this event: I’m getting some Independence Day vibes from this comic, in a good way, as the impending threat is scary and powerful. It puts an amazing threat in the path of the heroes of Valiant and potentially makes X-O Manowar a hero not for just his people anymore, but for the entire planet. Exciting stuff here folks, check it out!