Valiant Comics’ Shadowman reboot is full of vibrant color, intricate detail, and fast-moving action- with 100% less Aerosmith.
Shadowman wasn’t one of my favorite characters in the original Valiant universe. I found the character a little too whiney and clueless to be likable. I also found his powers to be a tad lacking. So, when I saw this title I wasn’t too excited. However, this reincarnation is quickly changing my mind.
Valiant Comics continues to pick up steam with this week’s release of Shadowman #3. It is written by Justin Jordan (The Strange Talent of Luther Strode, Team 7, Hack/Slash) and Patrick Zircher (Birds of Prey, Detective Comics, Cable & Deadpool). Zircher also handles the art with color artist Brian Reber (X-Men Legacy, Batwing, The Outsiders). It releases January 9, 2013.
The story doesn’t stop moving until the final page. It isn’t hard to pick out the motivations of Jordan and Zircher’s well-defined characters based on their actions. Understably still a bit clueless, Jack Boniface establishes himself as a Shadowman readers of classic Valiant can identify with. His companions are tireless, determined, and have interesting abilities. The villains are ruthless and uncompromising, especially Darque. That guy just drips villainy from his pores and I can’t wait to see more of him. The minion he sent to go after Jack looks terrifyingly monstrous and all-around badass. The heated and fast-paced interaction between these characters brings together an ongoing tale that’s a complete slam-dunk. I am salivating for more.
Shadowman’s artwork is pure eye-candy. The story is fleshed out by the art with fluid motions and transitions from one panel to the next. The panels are full of vibrant color, intricate detail, and fast-moving action. The illustrations of expression and body movement displays a true understanding of the people they’re trying to portray. The tale shifts settings at one point in the book, and the distinction between the different scenarios are well-defined by use of stark and bold coloration. You can really tell how closely the artists worked with the writers every step of the way. Such harmony in writing and art can really flesh out a comic book, and has turned Shadowman into an awesome read.
Shadowman is a worthy addition to my weekly pull-list at the local comic shop. I am so glad this book landed on my lap, as I might’ve overlooked it had I seen it on the shelves. The original Shadowman books were something I skipped back in the day. I felt as if it was being shoved down my throat while riding the success of other Valiant titles. The “guest appearance” of Aerosmith in one of those issues didn’t help, either. This new Shadowman is a redemption (and as long as no rock bands try to speech-bubble-sing lyrics to me in future issues, it might stay that way). Look for it in comic shops this week.