by Fred Van Lente, Clayton Henry

The first issue of Ivar, Timewalker is out today officially launching the new batch of books. Does Fred Van Lente succeed in bringing Ivar to the modern age? Read on to find out!

The book opens with Neela, a profressor at CERN in Switzerland, as she is about to begin an experiment. She is interrupted by Ivar who warns her that her life is in danger and she must leave. Not believing him, she calls security, only to discover that the security team has been replaced by mysterious strangers who turn out to be a group of Prometheans, beings from the far future sent back to kill her. Ivar manages to whisk Neela away through a wormhole and begins an escape through time in a terrific sequence of events and with a twist ending you will definitely want to read.

Fans of Archer and Armstrong will be well aware of Fred Van Lente’s writing style and humor, but for those of you who may be new to the Valiant universe let me just say, this book is hilarious. The comedic aspects of the book are subtle and quickly dismissed but add a whole other level to the story and very quickly helps flesh out the personalities of Ivar and Neela. Van Lente is no stranger to writing comedic duos, of course, and the dynamic between the two central characters is slightly reminiscent of his work on the aforementioned series. The dialogue in this issue is smart and witty, and it’s obvious that Van Lente has done his research when it comes to the science of the book, even if he blatantly chooses to ignore the science.

Really, that may be one of my favorite things about this book is that it doesn’t take much seriously, even if the threat from the Prometheans is a very serious one. Throughout the issue, Neela is constantly worried about what effects her actions will have in changing history, while Ivar lackadaisically strolls through time. He isn’t worried about the consequences and I’m sure this will be explored as the book progresses, even telling Neela at one point that she’s “seen too many movies.”

Of course we have to talk about the art which is very well executed. Ivar, Timewalker reunites Van Lente with Clayton Henry who he worked with in the past on the previously mentioned Archer and Armstrong. Henry’s work is top notch as always with smooth, clean lines and creative and inventive panel work which has to be seen to be truly appreciated. It should be no surprise that having Brian Reber on this book translates to an amazingly rich color palette which compliments Henry’s art beautifully.

Ivar, Timewalker #1 is tons of fun with plenty of excitement to keep me wanting more. If you’re new to the Valiant universe, this will be a perfect jumping on point as there is no need to worry about any past events or other characters to enjoy and appreciate the story. For longtime Valiant fans, there is plenty to love with nods to other books which will leave you wanting more exploration of the interconnectedness of the Valiant universe. Ivar, Timewalker #1 is a perfect first issue and a definite must read.


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