Review: Ivar, Timewalker #10

I saw the previous issue of Ivar, Timewalker as something of a wobble for this otherwise strong series, but with this tenth instalment I’m happy to say things are getting back on track. This issue in the ‘Ending History’ arc continues to follow Ivar and Neela’s time in the bizarre alternate reality in which dinosaurs have evolved to form a sentient Roman society. Last issue I felt this development was a little too silly even for this book which has admittedly been quite whacky at times. However, as this twisted society and those who live in it have been fleshed out in this issue the idea has become a little easier to stomach. The plot developments are fun to watch unfold and the issue’s explosive ending is exciting and has me interested to see where things go next; however I’d be lying if I said I had a firm grip on the overarching plot of the book at this point. Ivar #10Indeed, it pains me to say this because Ivar, Timewalker has had so many memorable plot developments up until now but – as many time travel stories have done in the past – the plot has become a little confusing to me at this point. The appearance of the villainous Future Neela in the same dinosaur reality as Present Day Neela was something I couldn’t wrap my head around, and I’m no longer entirely sure what the character’s motives are and whether she’s alive or dead. I’m also a little baffled by what part the earth-shattering null has to play in this story, and what Neela’s connection to it is. In spite of this confusion I was still able to enjoy this issue. Van Lente filled the book with fun moments, chief among them the endearing attempts by Neela to take in the strange world she’s been dropped into, and a Jurassic World reference which surely won’t go unnoticed by those who saw the movie this past summer.

It cannot be understated how important the work of Pere Perez and Andrew Dalhouse was this issue, as the art team take on the difficult challenge of creating a world in which dinosaurs ride other dinosaurs whilst dressed as Roman centurions, and succeed against all odds. Indeed, by the end of this issue I had almost forgotten that the characters in this book were primarily reptilians pretending to be human, as I found myself caught up in the political problems of dino-society. Of course, part of this success is due to Van Lente’s fine scripting but I do believe that in the hands of less capable artists this premise would have been harder to get on-board with.

With issue ten, Ivar is back on track and once again going to exciting places. I do find myself a little confused by some of this book’s plot points and that does weaken it overall, however this issue’s many fun moments and plot twists made it an entertaining read regardless. Factor in the strong art by Perez and Dalhouse and Ivar, Timewalker once again becomes one of Valiant’s stronger reads.

Score: 4/5

Ivar, Timewalker #10 Writer: Fred Van Lente Artist: Pere Perez Colorist: Andrew Dalhouse Publisher: Valiant Comics Price: $3.99 Release Date: 10/21/15 Format: Ongoing; Print/Digital