Welcome to Thursday’s Valiant Effort, the place for the curious and the fans of the Valiant Entertainment Universe to come and find out what this thing is all about. Each week we review all of the comics released by Valiant and try to give you some cool news when we have it. This week we have reviews of Rai #2 and Quantum and Woody #11.
Quantum and Woody #11 – Quantum and Woody are in jail after the fiasco at the Smithsonian last issue. Although Woody did return the relic to the museum, this does not help that Eric still sees him as an irresponsible child. James Asmus continues this great story with all the humor expected from this series… and then some. The E.R.A., Edison’s Radical Acquisitions, is a team of evil scientists that have been hunting Quantum and Woody and are closing in fast. Why are they hunting them? Could it be because Woody decided to save himself by telling everything he knows about the E.R.A. to the authorities? That would be the reason. Of course, the issue with any team of evil villains is that their egos are so big, they often have trouble working as a team and can’t keep from belittling each other at every turn. The sarcasm and snarkiness is truly hilarious in this issue. I also love the way that Asmus takes a little time to poke fun at the comics industry through the exchange between Alejandra and 69. The comments about how women are “weirdly sexualized” is then highlighted by the fact that 69 shoves a chili dog into her mouth. One of the coolest scenes in this issue, thanks to the awesome art team, is when 69 comes to ask Woody about his relationship with Jacklean. As the scene ends and 69 leaves, the shot is of Woody in handcuffs and the wall falling apart behind of him just like his world and his facade of jovial trickster is collapsing around him. Very poignant and perhaps a real moment of growth for him as he realizes that he truly loves 69… um, yeah. So, let’s just say that things get worse as the giant robots attack the precinct and kidnap Woody, but the cops think he is really in cahoots with them. And Eric is also taken. When they are brought together, the madman behind all of this turns out to be a revived Mighty Morphin’ Thomas Edison. Now he wants Quantum and Woody’s power in exchange for curing their father… who they did not actually know has been the goat all along. Check in next month for the series finale.
Rai #2 – Matt Kindt and Clayton Crain continue this amazing story of Japan in the year 4001 AD. While Japan has been designed as a utopia, there is still unrest and, for the first time in 100 years, a murder. Rai, the living weapon and protector of Japan, was called to investigate and was attacked by a monster. This second issue begins with Rai hanging from a cable, dangling in space hundreds of miles above the earth. Tapping into his power to pass through the grid, Rai makes his way back and destroys the monster and hurls the head to Earth as he realizes that it contained a bomb. Lula Lee, the little girl who has watched the whole event, tags along with Rai and offers a little help when all the technology fails. She leads him to a secret place called the Library of Congress, not to be confused with the mythical collection of all pornography, that the Raddies have been maintaining on paper cards in drawers deep in the bowels of the city. Research leads them to a name that, if you have been reading Unity, you will be familiar with… Silk, the person who has transferred their mind from body to body using a visual virus. Turns out Augustus Silk XVI is one of the oldest men alive, having come from Earth. Rai busts into his home and demands the file, and it is now that we see just how fine a web Silk has woven to connect himself into the fabric of Japan. Father owes him and therefore he has a special dispensation when it comes to his activities. Rai gets the files, but only in exchange for a favor to be named later. Handing the box of cards over to Lula, Rai heads off to stop the Raddies from destroying the solar collector and toppling Japan from the sky. Meanwhile, Lula hides, not wanting to be caught with these files. As she hides in the bathroom, one question filled my mind…
This issue has an explosive ending and a surprising reappearance of someone. What is on those cards? Will Rai survive this battle? Find out next issue.
That’s it for this week. If you have missed any of my previous Valiant Efforts, check them out here. Don’t forget to stay tuned as Armor Hunters continues and then, in August, Archer and Armstrong and Woody and Quantum team up in The Delinquents, a four issue series that should be awesome. Until then, Read Valiant First!