Tag Archives: valiant entertainment

Underrated: Quantum And Woody (2013)

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Quantum And Woody (2013).


This is actually the cover to the second printing of the hardcover which as of this writing is still available.

Quantum and Woody, often called the World’s Worst Superhero Team, are a pair of adoptive brothers from Valiant Entertainment who have to touch the bracelets on their arms once every twenty four hours or they’ll… simply cease to be. The reason they have to touch these bracelets is also the cause of their powers – a rogue science experiment of some kind that leads to two very unlikely people getting super powers.

Where this story differs from most other superhero stories is that the two heroes are both immediately at odds with each other whilst still being extremely close. Quantum, real name Eric Henderson, and Woody, real name Woody Henderson are adoptive brothers. One, obviously, wants to hide his identity, the other believes secret identities are pointless. There’s also the super powered goat who may or may not be the brother’s dead father, who keeps trying to tell them this in ever increasingly inventive and entertaining ways.

This volume of Quantum And Woody collects the entire twelve issue run of the title series, along with a bonus zero issue featuring the Goat, which is a great way to get the entire story in one sitting (the second volume collects various miniseries featuring the two, which are also worth reading – but aren’t the subject of today’s column.

Once upon a time, Eric and Woody Henderson were inseparable. Adopted brothers. Best friends. Brilliant minds. Years later, they are estranged siblings, petty rivals, and washed-up failures. But when their father’s murder leads them into the throes of a life-altering scientific accident, Eric and Woody will find themselves with a whole new purpose — and a perfectly legitimate reason to wear costumes and fight crime. Go big or go home, folks! 

With a blurb like this…

Perhaps one of the things I was most taken with in the book was just how dysfunctional everything was. The story shouldn’t have worked – there were so many disjointed moments and plot threads that had no theme other than the brothers stumbled into the events because they were trying to just live. Not live as superheroes, but as regular people who need to literally find a job in order to pay bills, rent and deal with the recent death of their father – but through all of this they somehow get wrapped up in a plot to start a civil war, stop a high tech crime spree and not kill each other.

You’d think that as two brothers who hadn’t seen each other in years would just go back to being estranged after getting superpowers, but they have to touch, or Klang!, their bracelets together once every 24 hours or they’ll cease to exist for superhero science reasons. What that means for us, is that as readers we get to explore a very common (sadly) familial relationship through the eyes of superheroes.

It is at once funny, endearing and somewhat frustrating as the two brothers try to learn to live together once again. And maybe save a few people in the process.

Quantum And Woody Deluxe Edition Volume One is one of those books that was far too easy to devour in one sitting. I thoroughly enjoyed each and every issue within the collection – and highly recommend you checking it out when you get a chance.


Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

Preview: Roku #3 (of 4)

ROKU #3 (of 4)

Written by CULLEN BUNN
Art by RAMÓN F. BACHS
Colors by STÉPHANE PAITREAU
Letters by DAVE SHARPE
Cover A by VIKTOR KALVACHEV
Cover B by DAVE JOHNSON
Cover C by SHAWN CRYSTAL
Preorder Edition Cover by BILL SIENKIEWICZ
On sale DECEMBER 18 | 32 pages, full color | $3.99 US | T+

The lethal assassin Roku is reeling from a brutal defeat, but an even bigger fight awaits…

It’s round 2 between Roku and the superspy Ember-1!

ROKU #3 (of 4)

Preview: Bloodshot #4

BLOODSHOT #4

Written by TIM SEELEY
Art by BRETT BOOTH
Inks by ADELSO CORONA
Colors by ANDREW DALHOUSE
Cover A by DECLAN SHALVEY
Cover B by MIKE MCKONE
Cover C by MARC LAMING
Preorder Edition Cover by SIMON BISLEY
On sale DECEMBER 18 | 32 pages, full color | $3.99 US | T+

NEW STORY ARC “The Long Shot” starts here!

All aboard as Bloodshot faces off against ghoulish monsters on a bullet train to the heart of darkness!

High-speed thrills and blood-curdling chills lurk behind every turn in 2019’s best new action series!

BLOODSHOT #4

Preview: The Visitor #1 (of 6)

THE VISITOR #1 (of 6)

Written by PAUL LEVITZ
Art by MJ KIM
Colors by DIEGO RODRIGUEZ
Letters by SIMON BOWLAND
Cover A by AMILCAR PINNA
Cover B by RAÚL ALLÉN
Cover C by MICHAEL WALSH
Preorder Edition Cover by KENNETH ROCAFORT
Blank Cover Also Available
On sale DECEMBER 18 | 32 pages, full color | $3.99 US | T+

Unstoppable. Untraceable. Unkillable. This is how he changes the world…
Who is the Visitor? Why are the leaders of the world terrified of him? And will they live long enough to find out?

THE VISITOR #1 (of 6)

Dark Horse, Humanoids, Valiant, and Impact Theory Join Graphite Comics

Graphite Comics, Inc. announced today the arrival of four new publishers to their popular freemium streaming comic book platform, Graphite. World renowned publishers Dark Horse, Humanoids, Valiant, and Impact Theory will join over 500 other publishers and content creators already active on the platform, adding to Graphite’s existing library of over 25,000 comic books, webtoons, webcomics, and manga.

Among the most well-known titles releasing on Graphite are Hellboy, The Witcher, Aliens and Umbrella Academy from Dark Horse, The Incal, The Metabarons, and The Twilight Man from Humanoids, Bloodshot from Valiant, and Steve Aoki’s Neon Future from Impact Theory.

The new publishers join an already impressive roster including BOOM! Studios, IDW Publishing, Legendary, Aspen, Dynamite, Papercutz, Top Cow, Markosia and Tidalwave, as well as hundreds of independent artists who self-publish creator-owned content on the platform via Graphite’s Upload system.

Graphite is a streaming comic distribution platform offering both free-to-read, ad-supported comics and a monthly subscription for users who want access to the full catalog, with no ads and early access to read without interruptions. Graphite also boasts the highest image quality available for comic book content on mobile and web, an AI driven recommendation system, and a suite of social and discovery features and tools, which facilitate the sharing and promotion of comic content by publishers, creators and fans alike.

Graphite is unique in that it offers readers content in all formats, including digital print, graphic novels, manga, vertical scrolling webtoons, web comics and comic strips.

Graphite offers a $4.99 monthly subscription that gives user full access to all premium content and an ad-free experience.

With Graphite Upload, any creator and publisher can self-publish comics in any format such as digital print, webtoons, webcomics, strips and right-to-left reading manga in minutes in any language. With Graphite’s revenue share platform, creators can track their stats and earnings in real time.

Graphite

Review: Doctor Mirage #5

Doctor Mirage #5

In Doctor Mirage #5, how will this speaker of the dead keep her place in the land of the living?

Doctor Mirage #5 brings Magdalene Visaggio’s five-issue run on the character to a close. For this first time since reading the first issue, I felt the balance of real-world grounding and the supernatural tip away slightly from the wonderful dichotomy she had developed as the book embraced the supernatural aspects that fans know and love about Doctor Mirage. When you dig deeper you’ll realize that Vissaggio’s story still has very real-world relatable relationships at its core. It’s only as the story comes to a close that it becomes as evident in the series finale.

Nick Robles and Jordie Bellaire have been consistent throughout the book. The visuals are what I can only imagine be similar to what the Beatles were seeing at the height of their most experimental phase. It’s a glorious look for the comic. The artist and colorist getting the freedom to explore what the Deadside is like through some flowing layouts and imagery. I scrolled through the comic in the review PDF. When done quickly you get a sense of the comic melting into your mind up until the final pages. This isn’t going to be a book that everyone enjoys as fully as I have. Tastes differ and all. It’s another series from Valiant that I didn’t expect to enjoy as much as I did.

The unique visual style and storytelling of the artists combined with Visaggio’s story struck me in just the right way. Magic in a bottle? Maybe – all I know is that I want more of this. That surprises me because typically I tend to stay away from anything not grounded on earth. I always enjoy when I’m reminded that a great story is a great story no matter the setting.

On the whole, Doctor Mirage #5 wraps up a story with themes that – for me at least – focused on depression, grief and loneliness. The brightly psychedelic visual style didn’t take away from the journey that Shan Fong took. As she traversed the Deadside she came to grips with the silence of the ghosts that had been her companions for so long. ThatVisaggio could bring the elements of the character, her journey and our relationship with Doctor Mirage together in a way that allows us to relate to her in a way that’s very human. Loss is loss, and that’s always going to be a powerful feeling – regardless of what stage of grief you’re in.

For a comic I didn’t expect to enjoy all that much, Doctor Mirage has become one I’ll return to time and again.

Story: Magdalene Visaggio Art: Nick Robles Colors: Jordie Bellaire
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.2 Overall: 9.1 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Rai #2

Rai #2

Can the cyborg samurai Rai and his robot boy sidekick escape a sentient madhouse in Rai #2?!

I absolutely loved the first issue of the current volume of Rai. I think it’s volume three technically, though it’s the second first issue since Valiant relaunched in 2012. Every aspect of the first issue blew me away. I honestly expected this issue to come off a little poorer in comparison due to that.

Spoiler: It doesn’t.

The first issue had Rai and his older/younger brother Raijin confront a semi stereotypical group of post-apocalyptic enemies in a roving gang of gear heads and dinosaurs. It was a backdrop to the more interesting exploration of the evolution of machines. This issue sees Rai and Raijin continue their search for more pieces of Father – the AI who ran New Japan like a god before Rai brought the floating nation down to Earth in a catastrophic confrontation in an attempt to kill him. Rai failed to kill Father, who took control of Bloodshot’s body and needs only a small number of the Offspring to remake himself entirely.

Rai #2 begins with Rai and Raijin in the hunt for one of the Offspring Father needs to absorb. It takes them through a sector of New Japan that fell to earth which bears a strong resemblance to a derelict North American city circa the turn of the 21st century. That strikes quite the dichotomy with a rather idyllic looking model home. It isn’t much of a spoiler to say that Rai and Raijin approach and enter the home. By the time the fourth page is over they’re in the house.

Dan Abnett comes at the artificial intelligence angle from a slightly different perspective in the second issue. Rather than a discussion between two brothers (though the dynamic is a unique one; the chronologically older one is the child, whilst the younger one act much more adult like), Abnett uses the AI within the house to ask whether it is ethical to create artificial assistants with enough autonomy to function and then leave them alone for a significant period of time. For anyone who talks to a Siri, Alexa or Google, I’m sure that you’ve often wanted a physical representation of the virtual assistant to make you a real cup of coffee. What if you were able to get one that eventually fell into disuse?

It’s at this point that the comic distinguishes itself as more than just a follow up to an issue of the year contender. It stands as a fantastic issue in its own right. Dan Abnett two for two when it comes to fantastic issues. If he can keep this level of quality up, Rai will go down as one of the best comic series.

Yes, I think it’s that good.

Joining Abnett is the ever astounding artist Juan Jose Ryp and colourist Andrew Dalhouse. The pair were spectacular last week, and are just as good here. Ryp’s hyper detailed style is superbly suited for a post apocalyptic world, and the way he shifts from the derelict and abandoned streets to the manicured lawn and clean lines of the model home is almost jarring. Dalhouse’s colouring also plays a part in the transition between the two settings. His work is also top notch in Rai #2; the starkness of the streets contrasts powerfully with the model home, as is emblematic of the comic’s soul.

Rai #1 was one of the best comics I’d read all year, and much to my surprise the second issue is every bit as good as the first. Welcome to your new favorite series.

Writer: Dan Abnett Artist: Juan Jose Ryp
Colorist: Andrew Dalhouse Letter: Dave Sharpe

Story: 9.7 Art: 9.9 Overall: 9.8 Recommendation: Buy

Valiant provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #100

Wednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

Each week our contributors choose what they can’t wait to read this week or just sounds interesting. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look at!

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.

Annihilation Scourge: Beta Ray Bill #1/Annihilation Scourge: Silver Surfer #1 (Marvel) – The return of Marvel’s cosmic has been entertaining so far and though the creative team has been different from the previous Annhilation events, it feels like a solid follow up.

The Dark Knight Returns: The Golden Child #1 (DC Comics/DC Black Label) – Frank Miller’s latest chapter in his take on Batman.

Far Sector #2 (DC Comics/DC’s Young Animal) – The first issue introduced us to a new Green Lantern and a brand new world. It was an amazing opening with great writing and fantastic art. We’re excited to see where it goes.

Doom 2099 #1/Spider-Man 2099 #1 (Marvel) – Marvel’s return to the world of 2099 has been weird but we’re holding in hoping it all becomes clearer.

Dying is Easy #1 (IDW Publishing) – A new series from Joe Hill and Martin Simmonds follows a disgraced former cop turned stand-up comic turned felon? We’re intrigued.

The Goon #7 (Albatross Funnybooks) – One of the most fun series out there right now.

Rai #2 (Valiant) – One of the best new series of the years. It’s not too late to get in on this which focuses on the future of the Valiant universe.

The Red Mother #1 (BOOM! Studios) – BOOM! has been rocking the new series with each seeing numerous sell-outs. We’re in for this new horror series.

Symbiote Spider-Man: Alien Reality #1 (Marvel) – The first volume surprisingly worked as it explored a new chapter during Spider-Man’s blacksuit days. We’re hoping for more of the same fun.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #100 (IDW Publishing) – Hitting such a huge number, we’re excited to see what IDW has in store.

Undiscovered Country #2 (Image Comics) – The first issue was fantastic as a world contingent entered a United States that has been cut off from the world for decades. The reveal was completely unexpected and promises a wild ride.

Underrated: Wrath Of The Eternal Warrior

This is a column that focuses on something or some things from the comic book sphere of influence that may not get the credit and recognition it deserves. Whether that’s a list of comic book movies, ongoing comics, or a set of stories featuring a certain character. The columns may take the form of a bullet pointed list, or a slightly longer thinkpiece – there’s really no formula for this other than whether the things being covered are Underrated in some way. This week: Wrath Of The Eternal Warrior.



wotewJust under a year and a half aog, Valiant Entertainment released a deluxe hardcover edition collecting the entire 14 issue run of Wrath Of The Eternal Warrior along with Eternal Warrior: Awakening #1. Fifteen comics presented in an over-sized hardcover along with 20 odd pages of bonus extras that add a lot for  those interested in the process of the creation of the series, all for $49.99. And yes, I did buy this myself (and happily so) despite having access to the review copies and single issues I had picked up when released.

This series remains one of my all time favourites, so getting a chance to read it all in one spot was something I couldn’t pass up.

But despite this being one of my all time greats, it wasn’t until about the midway point that I fell for the series. Wrath Of The Eternal Warrior didn’t start out as a series that wowed me. The first four issues seemed to struggle with pacing and the art style, especially given the series billing as a follow-up to the explosively exciting Book Of Death miniseries that (spoiler) ended in the Eternal Warrior’s death. It’s that death, and those that follow, that form the crux of the series, but without the first four issues you don’t realize the toll taken on the Eternal Warrior with each death and resurrection cycle. The comics that I felt struggled with pacing quickly became some of the most important ground-setting in modern comics – a lesson that I took to heart, and quickly so.

Comics, like all stories, need time to breath.

It would also be fair to say that the art team of Raul Allen and Patricia Martin were not immediately to my taste. In furtherance to that, it would also be fair to say that my taste quickly changed as the series progressed and the elegance and artistic genius of the husband and wife team gave me a new appreciation of the majesty of sequential art.  There are other artists who contribute to the series, all with a fantastic level of talent; it’s these contributions that give the series the honour of being one of the most visually stunning and diverse pieces of sequential art published by Valiant.

Robert Venditti has written some incredible comics in his time, but one of the finest examples of his work comes in the fourteen issue run of Wrath Of The Eternal Warrior. Taking you on a journey through history,  across continents and beyond death, Venditti weaves an incredibly deep tale that reveals a different layer upon each subsequent reading.

It’s also violent as all hell in places, which should satisfy the need we have for a bit of blood and conflict in our comics, but there’s also a deep emotional story here that cannot – and should not – go ignored. The Eternal Warrior is an ancient being, and his life has not always been sunshine and roses – but he still picks himself up and dusts himself off.

Isn’t there a saying that’s roughly it isn’t how many times we fall, but how many times we pick ourselves up?

Wrath Of The Eternal Warrior is a fantastic series, and I envy those of you who get to read the entire thing in one sitting; the deluxe hardcover is worth picking up for that series alone, which is why I haven’t mentioned Eternal Warrior: Awakening at any point in this week’s column because that’s the cherry on top of the fantastic main course. Mixed metaphors aside, Awakening is another really good comic, and serves as another nice bonus for those who buy the collection.

I’ll  make no secret of my abject love for this series, indeed the fact I own both the individual issues and the deluxe hardcover when I also have access to the review copies should hopefully speak volumes to that love. It’s a love that I genuinely believe you’ll share when you give the series a chance – it’s an underrated gem.


Join us next week when we look at something else that is, for whatever reason, Underrated.

Preview: Bloodshot Book One

BLOODSHOT BOOK ONE

Written by TIM SEELEY
Art by BRETT BOOTH, TOMÁS GIORELLO
Cover by DECLAN SHALVEY
On sale DECEMBER 11 | 112 pages, full color | $9.99 

Once, he was the perfect living weapon, created to follow orders. Now, Bloodshot works alone, using his lethal skills to protect those who cannot protect themselves. But a mysterious and powerful organization is watching, and they’re not about to let something as dangerous as Bloodshot remain free…

Collecting BLOODSHOT (2019) #1–3, along with material from the VALIANT: BLOODSHOT FREE COMIC BOOK DAY 2019 SPECIAL.
Thrills and blood-curdling chills lurk behind every turn in 2019’s best new action series!

BLOODSHOT BOOK ONE
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