Welcome to The Valiant Book! Hubby was in Texas on a work trip and spent his weekend at Fan Expo Dallas. While he was there, he picked up some fantastic sketches to start off our new Valiant-themed sketchbook (don’t worry, The Buckyyyy Book is still in action too!)
First up…. War Mother by the lovely Emily Rose Romano. This was a surprise gift I arranged for hubby, he LOVES future Valiant. War Mother has not been stuck into the sketchbook yet as she may be getting framed instead! Emily’s watercolours are so beautiful, it’s a gorgeous picture.
Ninjak by Clay Mann. I was thrilled that hubby got this as the first sketch in the book. Ninjak was the first Valiant book I read and I am a big fan of Clay Mann’s work, so this is wonderful.
Eternal Warrior by Cary Nord. Gilad is my absolute favourite Valiant character and Cary Nord… wow! I am delighted :) yay!
The Valiant Book is off to an AMAZING start! More sketches will be added as they materialise…
Valiant Previews: IMMORTAL BROTHERS: THE TALE OF THE GREEN KNIGHT #1 – On Sale April 12th!
Written by FRED VAN LENTE Art by CARY NORD with CLAYTON HENRY
It’s winter at King Arthur’s court in Camelot! The monstrous Green Knight has appeared before the Round Table with no armor, a gigantic axe, and a challenge. He has come to insist that the weaker knights participate in a friendly “winter’s game” where anyone can strike him once with his axe, but on one condition: That the Green Knight can return the exact blow in one year’s time. King Arthur has agreed to face the mysterious knight himself, but the Round Table’s youthful and most gallant champion, Sir Gilad, takes up the challenge to protect his king. Much to the court’s surprise, the Green Knight doesn’t flinch as his head is struck clean off…only to pick it up himself and warn Gilad that he is fated to receive the same blow before the year is out. Now, Gilad – the Eternal Warrior – must solve the mystery of who the Green Knight is before his hour at the axe comes to pass! But first, he’ll need to find some help…in the form of his own immortal brothers – Armstrong and Ivar – who shall be united once more!
Okay, take the best parts of Batman and James Bond and combine them, through in some nihilistic Buddhism, throw them in a blender, and the end result is Ninjak.
Ninjak is Colin King, a wealthy Brit who works as a spy after his parents died and he was left in the care of his abusive butler, a person so loving the Colin spent most of his childhood haunting the grounds of his estate rather than deal with the man.
He lends himself out to British Intelligence, combining all sorts of skills, gadgets, and wealth to take on the most dangerous assignments anyone can think to give him: in the past he’s been tasked with stopping alien invasions, assassinating X-O Manowar, and regularly hangs out with the Eternal Warrior. He’s a Badass Normal in the Valiant-verse, and so writer Matt Kindt gets to play with the full weight of this sort of character.
The end result is a comic that started slow and got progressively better, to where it’s now one of Valiant’s best but weirdest. There’s a lot of strange philosophy here, centered around a character who is effectively an adrenaline junkie with a death wish and enough skill to keep from dying. It’s blockbuster material.
At the start, Colin was investigating the Shadow Seven, a group of high-tech weapons dealers who dealt with cutting edge technology and weapons of mass destruction. Since then, he’s started working with them to fight off a larger threat: Master Darque, the Shadowman villain who beat his hero by recruiting him and is the background bad guy of the whole Valiant Universe, a literal god-made-flesh.
Shadowman was the weakest of the opening salvo of Valiant comics, a meandering tale that couldn’t come to terms with its hero or concept but who did have an immediately engaging villain. The protagonist faded and Darque has since plagued the Valiant Universe, causing massive destruction on a handful of occasions, and he’s one of those villains that wins even when he loses.
Back in the strongest issue of the old Shadowman series, we were given an origin story for Darque and that story has entered and currently haunts Ninjak in the form of Sandria Darque, a relative and another mysterious god-made-flesh who is clearly up to something, helping Ninjak for reasons of her own, reasons that have never been revealed, reasons that we just might learn this issue.
Artist Stephen Segovia is doing some interesting things in this book with panel layout that give an interesting illusion of movement while also making infodumps interesting. Writer Matt Kindt is Matt Kindt, so you know the story is going to be good and head in directions you might not expect – which is perfect for this title. If you like Batman and want to try something different you really should give this a look.
After discovering his evangelist preacher parents molesting children from their congregation, Obadiah Archer is captured by his parents, who attempt to murder him and destroy evidence of their crimes by tying him up in their house and setting fire to it. Archer does his best to call upon his faith in God to give him the power to save himself, promising God to bring his parents to justice should God give him the power to get free. He manages to escape, but blacks out from the smoke, and has a near-death experience. Archer sneaks out of the hospital and eventually stows away on a freighter, eventually making his way to a Buddhist monastery in Ladakh, high in the Himalayas. The monks observe that he has extraordinary control over his body, able to perform difficult martial arts moves with ease. He also displays flawless skill with a bow and arrow, which Archer says is an after-effect of his near-death experience. Now a young man, he returns to the United States to bring his parents to justice, as well as any other evildoers he meets. After arriving in California, Archer learns that his parents were arrested and imprisoned a few weeks after he left the States. His purpose lost, he wanders the streets, uncertain of what to do. Eventually, he encounters a scruffy-looking vagrant sitting on the sidewalk who calls himself simply “Armstrong”, and asks for spare change. Because no one raised in a Buddhist monastery can refuse to give alms, Archer hands over his last five dollars. Impressed with Archer’s generosity, Armstrong takes him for a beer, and regales him with his past exploits, which span thousands of years. Armstrong is a 10,000-year-old immortal who possesses superhuman strength, near-invulnerability, and the ability to heal quickly from injuries. They debut in Archer & Armstrong #0 (April 10, 1992).
hi! Can u give me some cdrama recommendations? Preferably historical and/or fantasy lol thanks
I love you, Anon!
All of these should be easily found with English subs, but if you are having trouble, message me. As you will see, I am fond of a decent amount of romance, and am a fangirl for some actors more than others. Plus, they are all (IMO) good entry points. I put in a MV for each.
To watch if you like beautiful visuals (arguably most beautiful drama I’ve seen, design-wise), high fantasy, heroic quests, brotherly love, something that looks like a Tolkien AU, BAMF heroines, multiple romances, fairy tales.
Not to watch if you don’t like - major wigs and costumes, a certain simplicity that comes from fairy tale frame up, plot holes.
To watch if you like romance novels in period form, killer dudes with long hair who are putty in hands of tiny heroines, married couples in love, evil harem intrigue, defying fate, masks and rose petals.
Not to watch if you don’t like stories that lack political complexity and look like shoujo manga come to life.
To watch if you like something shorter than your usual cdrama, fantasy, romance, people with wings.
Not to watch if you don’t like a strong case of what looks like BDSM fixation on part of the writer, a bit of childishness, and an ending that is polarizing (fair warning - I am in the tiny minority who was OK with it.)
The Glamorous Imperial Concubine/Qing Shi Huang Fei
To watch if you like female centric stories, messed up love stories, evil families, secondary guys who are unhealthy intense but magnetic, a lot of hurt/comfort, arc where heroine goes from disney princess to cynical BAMF.
Not to watch if you don’t like family intrigue, messed up male leads, crazy secondaries.
To watch if you like wuxia, truly jaw-dropping visuals, beautiful deadly people madly in forbidden love (sometimes the whole drama feels like a cinematic swoon), battles. My first cdrama that got me hooked.
Not to watch if you don’t want to skip the first two-three eps (which are awful), are not OK with certain fairy tale logic.
To watch if you are like me and this is your number 1 drama ever. OK, seriously, if you like time travel, moral dilemmas, best hero ever, battles, tragedy, amazing character arcs. SERIOUSLY THE WAY EVERYONE ELSE FEELS ABOUT NIRVANA IN FIRE, I FEEL ABOUT THE MYTH.
Not to watch if you don’t want to be an ugly sobbing wreck. OK, and also if you want romance be number 1 (it’s in there and awesome but secondary) and also I skipped the modern storyline so no idea if it’s good but the period part of the drama is THE BEST THING EVER EVER EVER EVER.
The Young Warriors/Young Warriors of the Yang Clan
Colin King is the wealthy son of a master spy who was employed by the British Government. King was raised in the Orient but was an outcast in that society. When his father was killed by rival agent Iwatsu, King decided to go into training, determined to continue his father’s tradition and bring his killers to justice. Now a master of the secret arts of the ninja, he served England and the world as Ninjak. He first appeared in Bloodshot #6 (April 20, 1993). Ninjak is the enforcer of the mysterious Weaponeer organization and the world’d foremost espionage expert. Ninjak uses his expertise in martial arts, demolition, information acquisition and other skills, a keen intellect and an ability to prepare people for any outcome in a given situation. He wears a kevlar-armored bodysuit that can change color. Eventually, Ninjak joins the British Intelligence organization under Neville Alcott, who also works with Bloodshot and Eternal Warrior. Alcott has known Colin since he was a boy, Colin’s father also worked for Alcott many years ago in Japan. Ninjak has no superhuman powers but has trained his body and is a master of ninjutsu, a group of martial skills that includes jujutsu, bōjutsu, and iaijutsu. An aspect of ninjutsu is the ability of the shinobi, or master, to use any object as a weapon. Ninjak has a highly analytical and tactical mind, allowing him to foresee various scenarios and prepare for them. He is also a computer hacker and uses this skill to gather intelligence.