Ever since Valiant Comics was resurrected in 2012, it has been all about history. Unlike the shared universes of its Big Two competitors, Valiant's realm didn't focus as much on stretching outward but rather forward and back, with stories taking place throughout the world’s past and future to give it all a sense of history without making it inaccessible.
No characters were more instrumental in achieving this than the immortal Anni-Padda Brothers: Ivar the Timewalker, Gilad the Eternal Warrior and Aram the Other (aka Armstrong) ... and now they'll be exploring Valiant history yet again in an all-new one-shot coming this spring.
Immortal Brothers: The Tale of the Green Knight is the first of a planned series of one-shots celebrating 25 years of Valiant that the publisher will be releasing throughout the summer, as announced via Comicbook.com. The tale will be told by Valiant mainstays Fred Van Lente — who has had extended runs writing both Archer and Armstrong and Ivar, Timewalker — and Cary Nord, who illustrated Eternal Warrior: Days of Steel. The one-shot will take readers back to Arthurian times to face the mysterious Green Knight alongside the three brothers. Here’s what Valiant has to say about the book:
It's winter at King Arthur's court in Camelot! The monstrous Green Knight has appeared before the Round Table with no armor, a gigantic axe, and a challenge. He has come to insist that the weaker knights participate in a friendly 'winter's game' where anyone can strike him once with his axe, but on one condition: that the Green Knight can return the exact blow in one year's time.
King Arthur has agreed to face the mysterious knight himself, but the Round Table's youthful and most gallant champion, Sir Gilad, takes up the challenge to protect his king. Much to the court's surprise, the Green Knight doesn't flinch as his head is struck clean off … only to pick it up himself and warn Gilad that he is fated to receive the same blow before the year is out.
Now, Gilad – the Eternal Warrior – must solve the mystery of who the Green Knight is before his hour at the axe comes to pass! But first, he'll need to find some help … in the form of his own immortal brothers – Armstrong and Ivar – who shall be united once more!
For those unfamiliar, the three brothers have been around since the very beginning of humanity in the Valiant Universe, and each of them has very different ways they deal with their immortality.
Aram, better known as Armstrong, is a super-strong pacifist and drunkard who would rather party and wax poetic than fight. Gilad, the Eternal Warrior, is the most cunning warrior to ever live and is tasked with protecting each new incarnation of the avatar of the Earth, the Geomancer. Ivar is a time traveler who hops about history as he pleases. Due to their disparate methods and attitudes, it should be quite interesting to see how the three of them come together to solve the problem of the Green Knight!
The 48-page one-shot will release on April 12, kicking off the 25th anniversary celebration for Valiant ... though it should be noted it hasn't been a continuous 25 years. Though the original publisher launched its first titles 25 years ago in 1992 to much fanfare, the collapsing speculator market of the '90s comics industry took its toll, and after changing ownership had mostly ceased regular publication by the turn of the century.
The characters were brought back to life in 2012 as Valiant Entertainment launched an all-new streamlined universe that focused on quality storytelling and an accessible shared universe. This latest incarnation has arguably been even more well-received than any of its predecessors and has even paved the way for a proposed movie universe! So who knows what the next quarter century of Valiant characters will bring ...
Have you been a Valiant reader at any point in the last 25 years? Which of the Immortal brothers is your favorite? Put your head back on and let us know your thoughts in the comments.