Three issues in and I simply cannot get enough of this series. Ivar, Timewalker is truly exceptional, and is not only one of the best Valiant titles I’ve ever read but also just one of the best titles I’m reading right now full stop. I fear this review may be a little shorter than usual because there’s very little for me to criticize about this series; writer Fred Van Lente is doing an excellent job moving the story forward at a fast pace whilst still making room for intrigue and character development, and the art team of Clayton Henry and Brian Reber are also making this one of the best-looking books on the stands. Believe me when I say everyone should have this comic on their pull-list. This third issue of Ivar, Timewalker opens exactly where we left off, with Ivar and Neela stranded in Nazi Germany with no one to turn to for help but Gilad (aka the Eternal Warrior). Gilad’s appearance in this issue is relatively brief, and by no means does it require any knowledge of the Valiant Universe to understand, however if you are a long-term fan then you will no doubt appreciate some of the neat references Van Lente makes. Not only does the story take some interesting turns in this issue, but also the overwhelming sense of fun remains a strong presence of the series. Van Lente doesn’t shy away from the absurd he embraces it with open arms, which consequentially leaves each and every issue with several memorable moments. But still this series never feels too silly which is important to mention as if it did then the many dramatic character moments wouldn’t hit quite as hard as they do.
Again, I feel conscious that I’m not really being a critic in this review, and more just praising every aspect of this comic-book. But I honestly feel that this issue was pretty flawlessly executed, and for the most part this series as a whole has been too. The characters have been well defined and developed, and even at this early stage in the series I’m feeling a real connection with them. Meanwhile, the overarching story is fascinating to watch develop, with Van Lente throwing just enough new details each issue to keep me interested whilst not laying all his cards on the table.
As I’ve already mentioned, the art team of Henry and Reber are also doing a fantastic job, with Henry’s exciting panels and Reber’s vibrant colours doing much to secure this series’ wild and wacky tone. This month’s highlight has to be the page which sees Neela standing triumphantly over a pile of burning robots shouting the noble words “Science, bitches!”
In the end, I really have nothing to say about this issue of Ivar, Timewalker except “Buy it! Buy it! Buy it!” This series blends action, humour, and mystery and character development better than any other comic I’ve read in some time. Every issue is a blast to read, with each one leaving me wanting more. If you’ve not yet given this series a go then I implore you to do so, as you really are doing a disservice to yourself in letting Ivar, Timewalker pass you by.