Review by: TheHopelessGamer

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Avg Rating: 4.2
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Story by Robert Venditti
Art by Cary Nord
Cover by Esad Ribic

Size: 0 pages
Price: 3.99

I’ve never read a page of X-O Manowar before this issue. I didn’t know the concept going into this first issue. I couldn’t tell you anything about Valiant Comics before today. I just thought you should know that going into this review.

Essentially my only knowledge of X-O comes from growing up in the 90’s reading Wizard Magazine. I can remember the blue and yellow spacesuit guy being plastered all over the magazine from time to time. I thought he looked cool, but apart from that, I knew he wasn’t Spider-Man and/or Batman, and even worse – he wouldn’t be interacting with either of them anytime soon, so I just kind of ignored the guy.

Fast forward to the year 2012, and Valiant Comics is relaunching into the modern world of comic books. Let’s just say that with my limited exposure to the character as a kid and my recent love for the New 52 from DC, I was primed pretty well to get excited for another comic company relaunch. Did it live up to the hype?

Sort of. First, I liked the story concept a lot. I was literally shocked when I clicked to the first page of the issue and was given a quick tutorial on ancient Roman and Visigoth warfare. I knew right away that any preconception I had of the book simply being a Green Lantern or even Nova rip-off was off-base.

I’m not going to say I was disappointed with the book not having really anything to do with the cover. While this issue had some great art and served as an effective introduction to the character of Aric of the Visigoths, it felt pretty slim. It didn’t feel like a complete story. Essentially, it was an entire issue of build-up.

This is alright, but when I’m paying $3.99 (especially digitally), I’m expecting a story to resonate a little more. The concept was great, the historical setting was a lot of fun, but when you get right down to it, the issue just didn’t do it enough for me.

It did make me want to keep reading to see what would happen next, but it wasn’t such a huge cliffhanger that I just know I’ll put down $3.99 again for it next month. I suspect I’ll be trade waiting for at least this Valiant book while I try out some of the other relaunched books in the following months. I’m not sure that’s what Valiant was hoping for though. It’s not exactly a perfect start to launch a rejuvenated comic book line. Of course, neither was Justice League #1, so who am I to judge?

Story: 3 - Good
Art: 4 - Very Good


  1. I read the entire first run of X-O Manowar and I believe it to be the best book run that Valiant put out. The art was consistently good, the story had depth, the characters were real, so I was looking forward to this book and really hoped it wouldn’t dissappoint. It didn’t. The story was similar enough, but updated to the way comics are written today (good or bad its up to you). The art was great and told the story well. I’m not sold on the book, but I’ll definitely be picking up #2 to see Aric in the X-O armor killing on Spider Aliens!

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