Comic Vine Review

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X-O Manowar #13 - Planet Death, Part Three Review

5

Aric is without his armor, but still plans on taking down the Vine.

There will be some minor spoilers in this review

The Good

Aric continues to take on the Vine in order to save all those enslaved on the planet. However, he has help from those who believe the armor truly chose him.

This issue is yet another example of why X-O MANOWAR is consistently one of the best books on the shelves. It's a brilliant mixture of fantastic storytelling and brutal violence. Aric learns more and more about the Vine and the fact that it's not just humans they've enslaved. It's numerous species from numerous planets. Their hold is bigger than anyone realized.

Writer Robert Venditti does a fine job at, month after month, putting together a well paced book that never leaves the reader wondering "did I miss something?" It's clear and concise, and he always finds a way to work in an extremely brutal, yet fulfilling, act of violence, like when Aric crushes someone's skull, behind him, without looking as he slices someone's throat right in front of him. That's right, I put a spoiler block on that because it's epic in words, but much more epic on the page.

On top of all of that, we get to see some insanely brutal action sequences as Aric rips through members of the Vine. It's a brilliant sequence, and while I've been a bit critical of Cary Nord's art on previous issues, his work on issue #13 is utter brilliance. The two-page spread of the Vine approaching Aric and the other slaves is fantastic. Set-up wise, it's executed beautifully and really conveys a sense of danger to the reader.

Very satisfying ending to this issue. At first, this arc feels like it's going to be short and sweet, but as we see at the end here, nothing is as simple as it seems at first. I love seeing Aric, who is more of a warrior than anything else, have to deal with complex problems with no simple solution. It seems like it all may be too much for him, but he finds a way to come out on top.

The Bad

I really didn't have a problem with this issue. I am actually surprised that this book is always great. It never has an "ok" issue.

Ok, I found a downside to this book. It's not new reader friendly right now. You're going to be completely lost. You have to start at the beginning. Luckily, trades exist and so does Comixology, so there shouldn't be any problems.

The Verdict

I feel like the broken record of truth, right now. "Buy X-O MANOWAR! You'll love it!" There's a reason I say this book is amazing, every single month because it's one of my favorite reads, right along side ARCHER & ARMSTRONG. This is a fantastic issue that mixes story and brutality extremely well, with some solid art from Cary Nord. There's no excuse to not be reading this series. This should be on your pull list.

Overall, I highly, as always, recommend this book.

13 Comments
Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

Posted by Hawkguy

@jonny_anonymous said:

Bad-f***ing-ass.

The preview was great, still need to get to my LCS for my pull list but this review just made me even more excited.

Edited by Jonny_Anonymous

@hawkguy: I'M gonna read it later to, can't wait

Posted by Meteorite

I pick up my X-O Manowar in trades, and whilst it's certainly entertaining, I don't think it's that amazing. Still fun to read though, and I will continue to buy it.

Edited by Cavemold

I loved this issue:) 5/5

Posted by SmashBrawler

This issue had one of my favorite panels from this week:

Online
Edited by That60sGuy

I am absolutely LOVING this book to the point where I'm glad writer Robert Venditti's DC series Demon Knights got cancelled so he can spend more time on X-O! :D

Although I think the best artist on this series so far has been Lee Garbett who did the Ninjak issues.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

@that60sguy: I would love if Venditti decided to do a second book for Valiant

Posted by That60sGuy

@jonny_anonymous: Yeah I'd love to see him develop Ninjak in a solo... or any other Valiant character really. I'm gonna pick up my first Green Lantern issues next month as Venditti's taking over.

Posted by Rich711

This book is so stupid. It started well but then spiraled into nothing but "Aric Smash!" every issue. I thought Valiant wanted to bring back what was good from the 90's but this book is nothing but childish violence. Serious disappointment. I mentioned it at my LCBS and the owners response was, "I know what you mean, we have stopped ordering any Valiant titles everyone is dropping them."

Posted by Avenger85

Man you also need to review Bloodshot and the new GI Joe series. Theyre fantastic and very underrated.

Posted by Lamenoire

@that60sguy: Venditti is going to write Green Lantern for DC Comics.

I hope his GL will be as good as XO-Manowar because this is definitely the best sci-fi I read for quite some time

Posted by Arkhamc1tizen

looks awesome