Welcome back to our continued coverage for Valiant’s summer event Book of Death. If you’re unfamiliar with the Book of Death event, then you tuned into the wrong issue to check out. Sit back and see what David and Dustin thought about the third issue of the four issue mini-series that is… Book of Death.
It seems clear at this point that Book of Death isn’t going to reach the heights of last year’s superb Valiant event Armor Hunters. Indeed, after an excellent first issue I feel like this book has been steadily going down in quality – a trait worryingly reminiscent of event books from the big two – although I live in hope that Robert Venditti can pull things together for a memorable finale next month. I’m still very engaged with the premise of this series, that of a book from the future that speaks of an impending doom awaiting the heroes of the Valiant Universe. However, I don’t think said premise was effectively used in this issue, which seemed to consist mainly of Gilad slaughtering some zombified animals while Tama gives him a little more information on the gloomy future that he desperately wants to avoid. I didn’t feel that the action sequences were particularly exciting, and I felt the dialogue delivered exposition quite heavy-handedly.
This issue also drove it home to me how sad it is that Doug Braithwaite isn’t providing all the art for this series, rather than just half of it. While Robert Gill is by no means a bad artist and has created some nice panels and pages for this book so far, his work in this issue is a little weak which only serves to emphasise just how much better suited Braithwaite is to this book. However, in spite of all these flaws, I’m still looking forward to issue four. While this instalment was undoubtedly the weakest yet, it at least leaves things in an exciting place for next month’s final battle with Master Darque. Book of Death is still a comic-book event above and beyond the likes of Convergence when it comes to quality, however whether it will be able to beat Marvel’s Secret Wars for the title of best comic event of 2015 is in doubt after this wobbly third issue.
Too bad we already knew who the bad guy was huh? I mean the lead up to the reveal was pretty good and if you’ve followed the Valiant U. from the beginning then Master Darque’s appearance raises some questions, but it’s good to see a big bad in the Valiant U. that can span more than one title.
Otherwise this issue feels like the slowest parts of issue #1 and #2 rehashed for a third time. I mean Gilad actually does the exact same thing, ie have Tama read the book of the Geomancer and prepare for war against whatever forces are thrown at them.
It’s a solid issue, but not very interesting and definitely didn’t feel like the last issue before the ending. I hope that Venditti, Gill and Braithwaite stick the landing, but all in all this event is shaping up to be pretty average for me. If anything it feels as if the consequences from this series are more important than the series itself which is a damn shame.
Book of Death #3 Writer: Robert Venditti Artists: Robert Gill, Doug Braithwaite Publisher: Valiant Comics Price: $3.99 Release Date: 9/23/15 Format: Mini-Series; Print/Digital