Comic Review: X-O Manowar #49 (Valiant)

“They come for our thoughts. Our memories. The lives each of us have lived.” The book begins with Trill, leader of the Vine and antagonist of the protagonist and title […]

“They come for our thoughts. Our memories. The lives each of us have lived.”

The book begins with Trill, leader of the Vine and antagonist of the protagonist and title character Aric aka Xo Manowar. It is a situation that calls for an alliance between the Vine and the people of Visigoth along with the rest of humanity to unite together against a cosmic threat known as The Torment. The Torment have come to lay waste and claim all human life and is up to the United efforts of Visigoth, the Vine, G.A.T.E (Global Agency of Threat Excision) and all of humanity to stave them off before they are sent to the brink of extinction. This time around the battleground is Manhattan and the Torment are destroying buildings and consuming people in the process. Tons of the heroes bring the fight to the Torment and clash against these larger than life foes, who totally withstand our protagonists despite their attack. Who lives? Who dies?

Robert Venditti (Green lantern, Hal Jordan, and the Green Lanterns) hits the ground running with this issue. There are no slow moments, it gets straight to the point and into the action. There are cool moments where he incorporates such characters like Ninjak into the book.  Hopefully, we get to see a notable Eternal Warrior and other characters later in this current arc of the series. In a way, this issue along with this arc reminds me of why I loved classic Marvel Comics where it was just an event that was centered specifically for a character’s solo series, where you didn’t have to read the storyline anywhere else but in that specific series. This issue reminded me of that when it came to those classic sort of stories. I mean even classic Marvel would have an event that would cross over within the other titles of the solo character, but I’m mainly associating this issue of XO Manowar to those classic standalone comics with their own standalone events basically.   

There are little moments in the book that made me wonder if Venditti told the illustrator, Joe Bennet, to draw for fun. Images as seen on page 13 where XO Manowar is holding a taxi cab after saving civilians. The image screams the Action Comics Superman first appearance cover while also having the Kirby Ave in the scene as well. I don’t know if that was meant to be a reference to the King, but if so, good reference to Jack “King” Kirby. The Torments also have Celestial vibes ebbing from them. There is nothing wrong with that comparison, in fact, it shows how big of a threat they are to the protagonists in this story. I enjoyed this issue , it had a lot of good momentum and pace to keep me interested. Can’t wait to read the next issue.

Anthony Andujar Jr.

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