Review: X-O Manowar #17
Shackled against his will and brought forward into the homeland of his enemies, Aric of Dacia – the war-hardened Visigoth who will one day become the unstoppable X-O Manowar – is about to encounter a staggering sight: the city of Rome! Soon, Aric will discover that the capital of history’s most ruthless empire can be far more dangerous than any battlefield… And even if he survives the hidden horrors of the emperor’s dungeon, can he withstand the all-out brutality of the Coliseum?
The second of Valiant’s books this week set in Rome, X-O Manowar takes a step into the past as Matt Kindt avoids conflict with Harbinger Wars II #3 where Aric plays a rather significant role by telling a story prior to his acquisition of the armour.
Although the comic follows Aric as he fumbles his way through Rome in an almost hap hazard manner, the bulk of the issue is actually focused on the newly introduced Sabbas as we learn more about him and his story. Kindt uses Sabbas to inject some slight humour into an otherwise dour tale as ultimately the highlight of the comic for me in terms of the story is Shanhara’s narration, and the oh-so-timely reminder that history can predict the future.
Whilst I can’t say this arc is my favorite I’ve read featuring X-O Manowar, I absolutely love that Matt Kindt has written a story that implores readers to learn from the past. Given that Aric is reliving a memory in order to do just that, we can see that sometimes looking backward is a window into what will come in our future if we don’t alter our course. Obviously, we can all take our own interpretations what Kindt’s specific meaning is, whether that’s a personal or more political in nature, but the old adage remains as true for Aric of Dacia as it does you and I – “those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”
Story: Matt Kindt Art: Trevor Hairsine with Ryan Bodenhiem
Inks: Brian Thies Colorists: Diego Rodriguez and Andrew Dalhouse Letters: Dave Sharpe
Story: 8.2 Art: 8.9 Overall: 8.6 Recommendation: Buy
Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review