I pity the fool who opens this book having not read any of the previous issues. More swo than most serial stories these days, Green Valley is a mindfuck that’ll make you want to read the previous issues simply to explain what is happening on the page. Writer Max Landis has crafted an interesting time travel story here complete with many twists and turns. We’re closing on the final issue though, which is a good place for many to trip into the mud!
Writer: Max Landis
Artist: Giuseppe Camuncoli
Publisher: Image Comics
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
“FORGOTTEN MYSTERIES OF MEDIEVAL ENGLAND”
A dragon slayer emerges as one knight is faced with the decision to endanger all of the world and time forever onward, to regain the lost glory of Kelodia.
Why does this book matter?
Its writer is an acclaimed screenwriter who has had many movies and now a TV show (Dirk Gently) produced, so you know the guy knows what’s up with storytelling. The art by Giuseppe Camuncoli is sharp and suited to this story and he’s an artist with pedigree too, having worked on the goddamn Spider-Man!
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This is balls to the wall action with a satisfying resolution for one of the heroes and a shocking coming-to-blows between two others. Essentially, Landis and Camuncoli have got nearly all their ducks in a row for the grand finale. Customary of Landis, the script goes off the reservation here and there with a cliffhanger that’s at once surprising and awesome. The trick of this issue is having one of the heroes be a straight up hero living to his potential that you can root for. Meanwhile, the two other heroes are fighting each other as they have very different ideas of what to do with this time travel machine. It’s painful to see these brothers fight and creates a quagmire in regards to who to root for.
If you open this book without reading previous issues you’re going to go…”huh?”
One of the main reasons this is such a winning issue is because the creators have thrust these characters into extraordinary situations and done the character work already. The reader can relax in knowing these characters and root them on as they experience the extraordinary. There are no exposition dumps, no slow moving bits–it’s just the reader experiencing these characters stories as if they were buddies.
Much props should go to Camuncoli who can draw a fantastic dinosaur on one page and an amazing time machine in another. The clashing of visual ideas is a fun concept that I’m sure Hollywood adores and it creates an interesting composition for your eyes. The layouts vary and suit the story as needed. from more open pages with large panels to show the size of a dinosaur to tighter action in the time machine. There’s a pace to the art that helps keep the issue on an even keel, which in turn makes it feel more cinematic.
Love that bottom panel.
It can’t be perfect can it?
A minor gripe to be sure, but Camuncoli draws teeth in a funny way , almost as if they’re dentures. There’s the teeth and then darkness behind them. No tongue or flesh in there, which creates a strange bite to the characters that takes a bit of their humanity away. Given the detail in their eyes and the wrinkles on their face it’s a bit of a surprise.
The villain is a bit wonky in this issue and although he is barely in it. One moment he’s cowering in fear, the next laughing maniacally, and then the next determined and courageous. He’s not really a factor in the issue, but I’m confused as to how this dude works.
Is It Good?
An action packed issue to say the least, that balances the battle of two brothers with the heroic fulfillment of another. Dinosaurs, time travel, and badass knights…what else could you ever want?