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Shadowman #4 Review

5

It's Shadowman vs. Mr. Twist as Master Darque inches closer to Earth.

The Good 

No amount of praise will give proper credit to artist Patrick Zircher and colorist Brian Reber's work here. Yes, Justin Jordan and Zircher produce a fine script (I'll get to that next), but the visuals in this book steal the show. As expected, this world is incredibly dark, but Reber's colors bring so much depth to the pages. The vivid ghosts, the exuberant portal and the awesomely unique Mr. Twist (particularly with his classy suit) bring such a phenomenal contrast to the dim (yet exceptionally detailed) environments.  
 
Zircher goes above and beyond with some of these panels. Seeing Jack use his blade on Twist is exciting and brutal. I want Twist to win, but seeing his head and body parts hacked off is just too damn enjoyable. You can feel the motion as the blade cuts through the villain -- it feels fluid and really makes the action scenes come to life. There's a superb Darkseid-esque panel of Master Darque towards the end of the book. I won't dive into spoilers, but it's a powerful and amazing panel which has me contemplating about what's to come. 
  
Jordan and Zircher have done the impossible: they've made me really like characters in a fantasy book. This issue leaves me anxious to see more of the trio (Alyssa, Dox & Jack). They have seriously great chemistry together and all bring different yet engrossing personalities to the title.  
 
These first four issues have done a stellar job of establishing a lot of interesting elements without weighing the book down with too much content. I want to see them train Jack, I want to see Jack discover more of his origin, I want to see how the greedy humans will respond, so on and so on. Jordan and Zircher have my full interest with this one. Don't you dare harm Jaunty, though!

The Bad 

Despite a gripping panel, Master Darque felt uninspired to me. They did such a phenomenal job with Mr. Twist. He's such a cool character and brought such an engrossing personality to the table. Unfortunately, this made the main villain feel lackluster in comparison. 

The Verdict

SHADOWMAN delivers on every level. There's quite literally no legitimate reason why you shouldn't at least give it an honest chance. The script is solid, the characters are diverse and engaging, the visuals are astonishingly detailed, and the book is just downright fun. In my opinion, it's every bit as good as Valiant's other titles -- and as you likely know by now, I think the other titles are top-notch.

So, Valiant, when are you making a Jaunty plushie? It could possibly be the creepiest/most adorable thing ever!  
12 Comments
Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

Cant wait to read it

Online
Edited by Hancock89

Nice review. The Darkseid analogy is on point, didn't see that at first. Oh, and:
 ♩♪Jack and Alyssa 
Sitting in a tree  ♩♪ 
 
Sorry but I just had to do that, haha. I like the chemistry between these two characters. With Mr. Twist gone, Devereaux will likely take center stage as villain in the upcoming arc to advance the Brethren plan's. That I'm looking forward to, because I think he's a great character.
 .

Posted by inferiorego

The art team on this book is amazing, but I'm just not digging on the story.

Staff
Posted by ShadowMonkey

I love all things Valliant, but I think this book is my favourite (Canadian spelling) of the Valliant books.

Posted by Cavemold

loved the art and story!

Edited by Reignmaker

Opening arc is over, and it's top-notch stuff.

The plot for the first four issues is pretty cut-and-dry, but what makes this book special is its smart dialogue, deep subject matter, interesting characters, and gorgeous art. This is definitely a series that's going places.

Posted by SavageDragon

Stop it Valiant please! Im already picking up Bloodshot and plan on Harbinger wars! Now this series is looking great..Im really considering say peace to Marvel on my pull list and saying Hello Valiant.

Posted by Cavemold

@SavageDragon said:

Stop it Valiant please! Im already picking up Bloodshot and plan on Harbinger wars! Now this series is looking great..Im really considering say peace to Marvel on my pull list and saying Hello Valiant.

Jaunty agrees with this

Posted by ShadowMonkey

@Cavemold said:

@SavageDragon said:

Stop it Valiant please! Im already picking up Bloodshot and plan on Harbinger wars! Now this series is looking great..Im really considering say peace to Marvel on my pull list and saying Hello Valiant.

Jaunty agrees with this

I tried to keep with a Marvel series that I really like, but nothing compares to the Valiant series, so at this time I don't have any Marvel pulls.

@inferiorego said:

The art team on this book is amazing, but I'm just not digging on the story.

Don't listen to him kids, Uncle Inferiorego is drunk! (though he is right about the art, so maybe he is only half-cut.)

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

@ShadowMonkey said:

@Cavemold said:

@SavageDragon said:

Stop it Valiant please! Im already picking up Bloodshot and plan on Harbinger wars! Now this series is looking great..Im really considering say peace to Marvel on my pull list and saying Hello Valiant.

Jaunty agrees with this

I tried to keep with a Marvel series that I really like, but nothing compares to the Valiant series, so at this time I don't have any Marvel pulls.

@inferiorego said:

The art team on this book is amazing, but I'm just not digging on the story.

Don't listen to him kids, Uncle Inferiorego is drunk! (though he is right about the art, so maybe he is only half-cut.)

all Valiant books are far better than most Marvel/DC books

Online
Posted by inferiorego

@ShadowMonkey said:

@Cavemold said:

@SavageDragon said:

Stop it Valiant please! Im already picking up Bloodshot and plan on Harbinger wars! Now this series is looking great..Im really considering say peace to Marvel on my pull list and saying Hello Valiant.

Jaunty agrees with this

I tried to keep with a Marvel series that I really like, but nothing compares to the Valiant series, so at this time I don't have any Marvel pulls.

@inferiorego said:

The art team on this book is amazing, but I'm just not digging on the story.

Don't listen to him kids, Uncle Inferiorego is drunk! (though he is right about the art, so maybe he is only half-cut.)

But I quit drinking (for the most part) when I quit smoking!

Staff
Edited by DarkWriter

I just jumped on the Shadowman train a few weeks ago, but having caught up, I'm really surprised by how much this title has drawn me in.

Granted, I'm a native New Orleanian, so I have a bit of a personal stake in it, but in all objectivity, this book is well-written and excellently drawn. The art is truly top-notch (if I ever bump into a woman who looks like Alyssa, I shall make her mine), with backgrounds and environments just recognizable enough that I can truly place myself in the action. One little thing, though: can we get the artists to include more nods to the Saints? That would truly give the book a genuine Noo Awlinz feel LOL!

Love the book; can't wait to get home and read 5, 6, and 0.