Past Aways #1 Emerald City Comicon exclusive cover in Seattle, March 27-29, 2015
Do you ever look at a smart phone and think of it as merely a primitive cellular device that does little more than distract you? Well, if you do, you’re ahead of the curve. But you’d definitely think that if you came from the future and found yourself in the distant and scary past of 2015. That’s what happens to a crew of deep-time explorers from 1.2 million years in the future. That’s quite a lot of generations of iPads. Welcome to the first issue of “Past Aways!”
Our explorers crash landed, with no way to get back for sure, plus the future is encroaching upon the past in a huge way. So, the crew is basically dealing with enough to make their heads explode. Matt Kindt’s script is relentlessly good as he introduces characters and juggles all sorts of sticky time travel issues. Scott Kolins provides us with pitch perfect art with a light and vibrant touch. Based on this first issue, it’s safe to say that we truly have here something special. The layers of complexity that are being meted out are flowing nicely. And never underestimate the value of a wicked sense of humor since that seems to be a good part of the glue that keeps this all together.
With more than a million years of evolution separating our main characters from, well, us, you might expect them to be more…evolved. That is hardly the case. They do have an assortment of very cool gadgets though. And they feel sorry for those struggling in 2015 amid never-ending conflicts and basic lack of progress. And yet, they don’t seem all that different from us. They can be just as petty, impatient, and even snarky. Oh, but there are differences. And those differences could lead to mass destruction. Wow. This is one of the most thought-provoking and just plain fun comics you’re likely to find now.
PAST AWAYS #1 is available as of March 25. For more details, visit our friends at Dark Horse Comics right here.
Cover art by Lewis Larosa
It is a pleasure to see Matt Kindt’s mind at work. He’s always had a thing for intrigue and circuitous plots. His latest work on Ninjak is right in step with that. I love how this comic opens up with a dramatic fighting scene that turns out to be something from a movie that our main character was viewing when he was a kid. It’s one of those added touches you can expect from Matt Kindt (RAI, Mind MGMT). And you’ve got great follow through from artist Clay Mann (X-Men: Legacy, Gambit) in the first of two parallel stories running in our first issue.
The idea is to show you Colin King from two perspectives: as a raw recruit; and, some years later, as a seasoned MI-6 master assassin. Kindt has a way with getting you deep into the story in unexpected ways. We next see Colin fight the sexy and deadly Roku. She’s been genetically enhanced. Her hair alone is a lethal weapon. It just takes three braided strands and her hair can “garrote or behead a man. It can cut through metal and it has incendiary capabilities.” Whoa, hang on there, how do you “garrote” a man? Yikes, that’s smarts. Quite quirky and memorable line. Kindt is definitely the guy to take Valiant’s Ninjak to new places.
Let’s linger just a bit more. Here’s the thing with a Kindt adventure, it just keeps building, twisting, and turning. That opening scene with the kid repeats itself in different ways to reveal a tumultuous and abused young life. But the kid keeps fighting.
We ultimately find Colin infiltrating the notorious Shadow Seven and then we make the jump to Colin as a raw recruit in North Korea, this time teaming up Kindt with artist Butch Guice (Captain America, Action Comics). The style is rougher and fits in well with that more gritty time in Colin’s life. This second ongoing story lacks some of the potency of the first but perhaps that balances things out. The thing I like most, so far, in this whole comic is the flipping back and forth between the 10 year-od Colin and the 30 year-old Colin in our first story. Overall, this is a well-executed first issue.
NINJAK #1 is available now. For more details, visit our friends at Valiant Entertainment right here.
Gilad has great powers, really great powers, as The Eternal Warrior. But his arch-foe is just as powerful. Hey, he might even be Satan or pretty high up there. He’s The Immortal Enemy. And these two have been duking it out for coming on, what, ten thousand years? That’s pretty long! Well, Gilad is a proud fella and pride never goes out of style.
But Gilad is struggling to adjust to the 21st century. He just might be due for an oil change and a new sidekick. Enter a new breed of Geomancer, this is a young blonde who might have let her alias get the better of her. That will happen when you start to believe your work in public relations is actually real work. This time, the eternal battle is going to require something more. This time, they’re going to need The Valiant!
If you’re new to the Valiant universe, this is a perfect time to dive into an epic story from New York Times best-selling writers Jeff Lemire (Green Arrow, Animal Man) & Matt Kindt (RAI, Mind MGMT) and Eisner Award-winning artist Paolo Rivera (Daredevil). All systems go. Everything here is smooth and appealing. You’ve got your epic battle and a nice mix of humor, intrigue, and adventure. Sounds like a sweet deal.
“The Valiant #1” is available as of December 10. For more details, visit our friends at Valiant Entertainment right here.