There are a lot of great independent comic book companies out there, and I see so many people talking about Image and even Boom, both of which are great, but some of my favorite Indy books have come from one company over the past two years.
And right now Comixology, the iTunes of comic books, is having a great sale on Valiant books. For the next few days you can get the first issue of any Valiant book for FREE! I repeat, for FREE! You have nothing to lose with this, you get to support a great company and you’re the one who gets all the rewards, for FREE!
Plus, if you want to go beyond the first issue, they’re having one of their famous 99 Cent sales on one of my favorite series, Archer and Armstrong!
But where should you start? What kind of books can you get from Valiant? Here’s a quick breakdown of their titles.
Archer and Armstrong
Obediah Archer was raised in a creationist theme park where his parents told him he would one day have to kill a great evil being. So he trained himself to be the greatest fighter in the world. However when he finally finds this great evil, not only is he just some drunk immortal philosopher named Armstrong, but he reveals to Obediah that his parents are the actual evil ones and they belong to a cult trying to take over the world. This hilarious book is like the X-Files meets the Odd Couple as it features these two unlikely friends having to take on every weird conspiracy theory you can think of.
Not in the mood for a comedy? Want something a little more bad ass? How about Bloodshot? A man with a past he can’t remember and his only company the voices from the nanobots in his head that are keeping him alive, Bloodshot was the government’s top soldier/assassin/whatever they needed him to be, up until he realized the family, home, and life they had created for him were all a lie. Now he’s out for answers, and considering that he’s one part Punisher one part Wolverine, he’ll probably get them.
Imagine you’re a mutant and Professor X, who also happens to be the world’s biggest mogul and owns everything from news networks to countless charitable organizations, asks you to join the X-Men. However soon after you get there you realize “Oh, you’re actually the bad guy here and you’re trying to take over the world.” This is basically the story of Peter Stanchek, whose powers allow him to activate the hidden powers in others, so now he must go around the world recruiting the losers, the people who weren’t good enough to join this band of megolomaniacle mutants. This book has an amazing cast of characters, each heavily flawed but growing as people by being with each other. Warning though, as I said these are very flawed characters and in the first issue the main character does something so horrible that it’ll be hard to forgive him for that, but the cast is still so wonderful beyond that. For example, Zephyr, one of the only plus sized female characters in comics, is one of my favorite upbeat and positive heroes out there.
Quantum and Woody
My personal favorite comedy series out there, Quantum and Woody is the story of two brothers, one of whom grew up to be a straight A respectable soldier, the other grew up to be a drop out con artist. But when their father dies they have to come together to start investigating what he was researching that got him killed. They find themselves exposed to his experiment and now the two of them have super powers, but it comes at a cost, because from now on if they ever go more than twenty four hours without banging arm bands then they’ll explode. So can they solve their father’s murder and fight off hoards of crazed scientist from the 80’s, hillbillies, and super powered goats? Probably not.
When a Alric, a barbarian from medieval times (not the restaurant), and his entire clan are kidnapped by a race of aliens, they’re forced to work and toil as their slaves for years. But when that barbarian steals their ancient and godly suit of armor, he stages a prison break. So now they’re free, but when they return to Earth they discover that time passes differently in space and thousands of years have now passed, and this new advanced Earth is now infested with alien spies. Think of this series as Conan meets Iron Man.
So there you go, there’s your quick and easy guide to Valiant Comics.
Start reading them for free here -
Archer and Armstrong
Quantum and Woody