Valiant Entertainment’s Editor-in-Chief Warren Simons and Chief Creative Officer Dinesh Shamdasani were joined by the talent behind several of their current and upcoming books, Jeff Lemire, Matt Kindt, Paolo Rivera, Fred Van Lente, and Robert Venditti to speak to fans about what’s in store as we enter 2015.
Hunter Gorinson, Valiant’s Director of Marketing, kicked things off with an animated video trailer for the upcoming series, The Valiant. Lemire stated that the idea started small but quickly grew into something big and exciting, with Simons describing it as a great jumping on point for new readers. The series will center around the Eternal Warrior and his conflict with “The Immortal”. Virtually every character will appear within its pages during the run and the story promises to have massive, lasting repurcussions in the Valiant Universe. Rivera brings his signature visual style to the book and discussed briefly how fun it was to draw the Eternal Warrior in every era leading up to the present and how they updated his costume in a way that encompassed his long history. The first issue will be hitting shelves this December.
Shortly after, in January, Ivar, Timewalker will be released with Van Lente and artist Clayton Henry at the helm. Following the eldest of the three immortal brothers (from the pages of Archer & Armstrong), Van Lente promises a super-fun time-traveling adventure with a heavy romance element. Then, February will bring us Divinity, a four-issue mini-series from Kindt and artist Trevor Hairsine. This book marks a new concept for Valiant as the creative team has set out to create the most powerful, fearsome being in the universe, but present it in a personal, heartfelt way. Imperium, another new property, will launch the same month. Simons described the series, which centers around the newly exposed Toyo Harada (from Harbinger), as unlike anything they’ve tackled before. Harada was a child of the bomb and wanted global peace by any means necessary. Now that everyone is aware that he has been manipulating so many aspects of the world, they begin to turn against him, leaving Harada in need of allies to see his vision realized.
Matt Kindt and Clay Mann will be the creative force behind Ninjak in March. We’ll finally get to see everyone’s favorite pompous assassin in his own series under Valiant’s modern banner and it sounds like they have great things planned. Kindt remarked that they have a long-term arc planned in which we see a unique origin story in which we get to see the character develop through three distinct periods in his life. They also plan to highlight a different gadget from Ninjak’s arsenal on the inside of each book’s cover which plays an integral part of the action in that issue.
Wrapping up the run of the so-called “Valiant Next” books that are being rolled out is April’s Bloodshot Reborn, written by Jeff Lemire with art by Mico Suayan. They were fairly tight-lipped about what we can expect to see from the series as it has many ties to what will transpire in the pages of The Valiant, but advised that they’ve retained everything we love about Bloodshot but enhanced it, promising an interesting take on an unconventional action hero.
Of course, there was also a bit of news regarding Valiant’s current-running series and Gorinson was excited to announce that the Armorines will be re-introduced to the universe in X-O Manowar #30. Similar to the original concept, the Armorines will be a corporate invention. After the devestation that occurred in Armor Hunters, the UN develops and agency to monitor and control alien technology. Venditti talked about the fun he’s had working on X-O and that he enjoys keeping the story serious and intense while hopping around to different genres. Finally, James Asmus and Steve Lieber team up for the four-issue series, Quantum and Woody Must Die!, which is due out in January. In their newest outing, Quantum and Woody are in good spirits and things are going well until they realize something is not quite right with the world around them. We’ll have to wait a few months to find out what that means and what Valiant has in store for the goofy duo. Valiant looks to be charged for an explosive start to 2015, with new series, new characters, and a wealth of great new ideas to keep their properties fresh and their readers energized.