Wednesday, November 13, 2013


Unity #1

Valiant is a comic universe much smaller than the big two, but based on Unity alone, it's clearly quite vast and fairly expansive. Unity is their new team book that encompasses the characters from a few of Valiants' ongoing titles. Or most of them, anyways. Going into Unity having not read the recent Valiant titles, this new #1 has sparked my interest in the universe and in the characters. It seems to be a great jumping-on-point for the Valiant ongoings.

The main story (or most of what you'll need to know going into Unity) is summed up on the inside of the cover. A nice little timeline will support you though the title and help you understand why the characters are at war. It's a little reminiscent of Irredeemable, actually. An unstoppable, violent superpowered (or super suit-powered) man is waging war on Romania to avenge his people, and no one on earth can match his strength, speed, and abilities. Even the most well-timed, properly executed plans are ineffective. How can the world stop the fighting and prevent a possible World War 3?

At the forefront of Unity is Manowar. His story is explained early in the book and, for this reason, readers new to Valiant titles don't have to have read the previous titles to enjoy Unity #1. While the supporting characters aren't given backstories or explanations, Matt Kindt does a great job helping the reader understand what roles these characters play. As usual, Kindt's writing is spot on. Doug Braithwate illustrates the book quite well, though there doesn't seem to be any other credits inside the pages of Unity #1. No lettering, colouring, or editing credits anywhere. Adding value to the book is the short backup story, which leads into XO Manowar #19 next week.

The Valiant team has mentioned that more characters will be added to this new ongoing as time rolls on, as it's a team book at its core. Should be interesting to see how this changes the Valiant universe, and how it affects all of the current titles. New readers should consider Unity #1 this week if the Valiant universe seems appealing.

Marvel Knights: X-Men #1

Next up in the relaunched Marvel Knights lineup is X-Men. Marvel Knights X-Men seems to take place in the current Marvel Universe and in the current X-Men timeline. The story focuses on Wolverine's team, including Kitty, Rogue and Beast. Taking the reins on story and art is Brahm Revel (Guerrillas) and Chris Peter on colours. MK: X-Men #1 reads a lot like a horror story, which is a fun change for an X-Men title.

After Rachel Grey is plagued by the haunting vision of a young mutant being hunted in a forest, the X-Men discover a small town with a history of missing children. Investigating the mutant's disappearance leads only to new questions, and eventually to an old cabin smack in the middle of a foggy swamp. Things heat up from there. A small backwoods town and a dark winding forest provide an excellent setting to tell a creepy mystery story, and it's actually pretty fun with the X-Men doing the investigating. It feels like an older comic, and it's certainly not plagued by continuity or an abundance of characters.

The Marvel Knights lineup has been showcasing some great talent with MK: Spider-Man written by Matt Kindt and illustrated by Marco Rudy. This month we have X-Men, and next month will be Hulk's turn to get the Marvel Knights treatment. Each series is a five issue arc, and based on the Spider-Man and X-Men titles, these books should give a neat new look at these characters, telling some weird, experimental stories in odd new ways. The art by Rudy on MK Spider-Man shows just how much fun these books can be.

Marvel Knights X-Men is definitely recommended if you're a fan of X-Books and horror stories, or if you want to expand your comic tastes with new up-and-coming talent.

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