Sunday, January 19, 2014

Straight Forward Reviews : X-O Manowar # 21

Coming off the heels of the events in Unity # 3 comes X-O Manowar # 21!

Writer - Robert Vendetti

Artist - Cary Nord

Publisher - Valiant

Review by Jeremias de Leon

Story

As mentioned above, this issue takes place right after Unity # 3 and follows what happens with Aric right after the big events happening then.

Before reading this issue, it's best if you read Unity # 3 as the impact of this story will be felt and the transition from the last issue to this one won't seem weird. Although, the comic does a good job of not leaving you in the dark on exactly what happened. So, it's not required but it is recommended.

The story in this issue focuses on Aric's new plans; which are mainly the safety of his people, who all happen to be incarcerated along with him. The story gets filled out with flashbacks to Aric's youth and we see like we have in previous issues why Aric fought to keep the land he proclaimed to be for his people. They've been in captivity so long and he has had to see his people with bars and fences around them for so long that he's utterly sick of it. We also see the starts of what seems to be a new arc for Aric in this issue. A government agent explains to Aric that they didn't get what they wanted out of him but that it seems that he can have other uses. Without spoilers, of course, it seems that these other uses will lead to a new story arc and that it seems right to keep the name X-O Manowar for this series.

The pacing is really well done and the dialog is really intriguing. Aric, speaking to the government agent,  was pretty cool and something I see that can be in a movie.

Art

I have mentioned before that I like the art style the series is using right now. The color palette reminds me of old Street Fighter promotional art.

I am aware there are people who find the art style strange or don't like it however. It is still technically well done though and the art won't detract from enjoying the story. You might not like it, but, in this review, I say it's excellent.

Verdict

Valiant's comics lately have been hitting us with crazy curveballs and X-O Manowar is no exception. For that, I stopped guessing what might happen in future issues and just enjoy the ride. Coming right after Unity # 3, X-O Manowar melds action, suspense and even a little mystery for what turned out to be a fantastic comic. I give X-O Manowar # 21 a 10 out of 10.

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