by Matt Kindt, Jeff Lemire, Paolo Rivera

Last month’s The Valiant #1 introduced us to the shared history of Gilad, the Geomancer, and the Immortal Enemy with a thrilling introduction to the Valiant universe for new and old fans alike. Issue #2 steps up the story with one of the most unique fairy and exciting stories to come out of the universe in recent months.
In this issue, Kay McHenry, the new Geomancer, comes face to face with the Immortal Enemy, an ancient creature whose sole purpose is to kill the Geomancer and restore the balance of nature. While this struggle of good and evil and whether the Immortal Enemy is telling the truth has yet to be fully explored, but it certainly has set up what is sure to be one of the most epic stories of all time.

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that this book is overflowing with talent. Matt Kindt and Jeff Lemire are tremendously talented in their own right, but like Valiant’s heroes, together, they are a force to be reckoned with. The pacing of this issue is perfect, slowly peeling layer upon layer of the mystery while further expanding the stories of characters we already know and love. The panels giving us a brief hint of Ninjak’s past are brilliant and haunting at the same time and should definitely generate some excitement for the character’s solo debut in March.

The real star of this issue though is definitely the Immortal Enemy and I am glad to see such an interesting, powerful and utterly creepy character take center stage. Other than Toyo Harada, we haven’t really see a character so powerful that it would take a united group of heroes to defeat and the Immortal Enemy is just that. He is the stuff of nightmares, and I loved how his character was interweaved into a fairy tale flashback by the Geomancer and how his appearance changes based on the fears of those who encounter him – utterly brilliant.

Paolo Rivera return on art duties and he is really outdoing himself with this miniseries. The character designs for the Immortal Enemy are amazingly creative and haunting. Add to that the stellar use of darks and contrast and reading this book may have you hiding under your bed sheets.

The Valiant #2 is an amazing sophomore issue with great pacing and dialogue and a story that will leave you at the edge of your seat. For new and old readers alike, there is no doubt that this is a definite must buy. The only question is, what is in the box?

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