PREVIEW: Armstrong and the Vault of Spirits #1 (Pre-Review!)

A very special preview of the one shot featuring the Valiant Universe’s toughest, drunkest party immortal to ever grace the annals of history, listen as the hero tells a story from the beginning of recorded time!

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Title: Armstrong and the Vault of Spirits #1
Writer: Fred Van Lente
Artists: Cafu and Darick Robertson
Colors: Andrew Dalhouse and Diego Rodriguez
Letters: Dave Sharpe
Publisher: Valiant Entertainment
Publication Date: 2/7/2018

What You Need to Know:

“Deep beneath New York City’s seediest dive bar, Armstrong – the hard-hitting, harder-partying immortal veteran of history’s greatest escapades – is hosting an invitation-only affair for his most beloved friends and allies! Archer… Ivar, Timewalker… Faith… Quantum and Woody… And special guests from across the Valiant Universe… All have been offered a seat at the table for a personally guided tour of Armstrong’s most valuable and tightly guarded treasure… From the Great Flood to ancient Greece to the height of the Crusades, raise a glass as Armstrong recounts the true stories of his wine-soaked path down through the ages and the artifacts that reside within his own secret archive!”

-Valiant PR

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What You’ll Find Out:

We open on Noah’s Ark, high atop Mount Ararat, the Tuesday after the floodwaters recede Noah walks out of the ship and expresses elation at being the last living human and a good amount of schadenfreude at being right when everyone else was wrong. After taking a moment to creep on his son’s wives (they are the last humans alive after all… they have to… repopulate…) Suddenly a booming voice hollers from nearby, greeting them and asking if they have any booze!

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We cut to Armstrong’s bar in present day, also on a Tuesday, if you care… We pan around to see a veritable who’s who of Valiant’s heroes, including folks like Archer (Armstrong’s stalwart companion) Quantum and Woody (self-professed world’s worst superteam!) Faith Herbert (Flying vigilante, usually a lot heavier than we see her here) and Pink Mambo. (maybe probably voodoo priestess, pink mohawk, angsty) Armstrong lets them in and starts to give them the tour. Observing them from across the street (and helpfully naming them all for me!) is a huge group of various evil sects looking to do everything from steal ancient Jesus Wine to hawking bottles on eBay to finance whatever it is evil sects do. This party is getting crashed!

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The contained story involves hilarity and heartbreak, libations and liberties, fights and fu- friends… Pick up a copy of your very own February 7th!

What Just Happened?

This book is looking to be an “easy-in” into the current slew of new books Valiant is putting out. (which are excellent by the way) The idea of doing what basically equates to a retold bible story in an oversized one-shot is pretty awesome and definitely leaves you wanting more, as opposed to many one-shots of this nature which are often either pointless or so jam-packed with exposition in order to set up an arc they end up being toothless. Course that’s beside the point, this book is a bit on the funny side, a bit very on the funny side, despite the obligatory super fight. (which is shown sparingly to great effect) The end was very sweet but slightly bitter for one party I won’t name, which was actually pretty hilarious.

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The art in this issue was great, with a very tidy style I can very much appreciate in this era of hyper-detailed linework muddying up faces, I especially liked the scenes set around Noah’s tribe, which diverged slightly from the biblical story, obviously.

Rating: 9/10


Final Thought:


Really like this issue a lot, and will retroactively make it a 9.5 if, you-know-who-gets -out-of you-know-where, in a year, which will make me laugh all over again. Get this book, you’ll be glad you did.


 

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