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X-O Manowar Volume 3: Planet Death TP Paperback – 3 Sep 2013


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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Valiant Entertainment, LLC (3 Sep 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1939346088
  • ISBN-13: 978-1939346087
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 17.8 x 26 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 269,648 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Wow, in these days of decompressed story-telling, it is still possible for a lot to happen in just a few issues (well, actually the six issues from number nine to fourteen, making this a very generous trade). Especially if you happen to belong the the alien race known as the Vine, living on Loam, but infiltrating many other worlds, including Earth, where they captured the Visigoth Aric who later stole their holy armor. Aric now takes the battle to their home world, and everything changes, for the Vine as well as for Aric. I look forward to seeing what happens next. A reader that starts reading the series with this trade will miss some background information, but it is sufficiently self-contained to work fine as a starting point.

This is the third trade from the new revitalized version of X-O Manowar, the flag-ship title of Valiant in the 90s, and the title that spearheaded Valiant's return. A return which has already earned them the prize as publisher of the year (segment under 5% market share).

The story-telling is good, honest and intelligent space adventure. At the same time it makes us think in new ways as we are presented with the perspectives both of a Visigoth and different Vines. The art is nice and shows the story well. I think some passages might be in homage of Joe Quesada's art from the 90s. Two sets of artists are represented in this trade and they go well together. The bonus gallery contains covers, and some cover sketches not seen anywhere else.
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Format: Paperback
Where we left off: X-O Manowar and Ninjak put aside their differences to face the threat of a more serious foe – The Vine/Human hybrids that have infiltrated our world’s governments. Their assault on the Vine headquarters of England’s MI-6 spurs the Vine leadership into action, and the go command has been given for an invasion of Earth.

Vol. 3 of X-O Manowar clocks in at a whopping six issues, and serves as a mini-event for the title. The first two issues serve as a prelude, detailing the Vine fleets arrival and invasion attempt, while the remaining issues deal with Aric deciding to travel to the Vine home world of Loam and bring the fight to them, even if it means destroying their entire planet. However once he arrives… well… let’s just say I did not see that one coming.

Robert Venditti crafts a truly engaging story, especially once Aric arrives on Loam. Here we get to explore more of the mythology of the X-O armor, especially in the form of its religious significance to the Vine as depicted in some amazing artwork by Cary Nord. It is here that we can see Nord starting to stretch his artistic muscles, as the scenes relating the story of the armor are filled with almost liturgical flourish. Truly beautiful stuff.

This volume marks a turning point for the series, both in regards to Aric’s quest of vengeance for what the Vine did to him, as well as his role in the Valiant Universe. When read together with the first two volumes, you can get the sense that this is the end of “Season 1” of X-O Manowar, and sets events in motion for an explosive Season 2!
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Format: Paperback
Volume 3 continues the ongoing saga of Aric of Dacia, a warrior out of time who becomes bonded with the most powerful weapon in the known universe. At the beginning of this tale, Aric is determined to bring war and death to the alien Vine. As such, this story could have easily been full of rampant, crazy comic-style action and violence. But while it does contain such elements, what I've enjoyed the most about this volume is the emotional depth given to both Aric and the Vine.

Venditti does a great job tying together similar themes for both parties throughout this volume. Aric feels lost, a man with no solid connection to either his past or the current present. But in his initial assault on the Vine homeworld, Aric learns of a remnant of his own Visigoth people. Why are they there? Who are they? What is Aric's personal connection to these people? These questions are answered as Aric discovers he does have something to fight for, to protect and rebuild, a renewed purpose and faith.

Venditti also explores the aspect of faith through the Vine Priest that was in charge of the temple that housed the holy relic Manowar armor. A human bonded with a relic thought to be only for Vine usage is seen as blasphemous and used by the ruling council to incite war. But the Vine Priest sees only the fulfillment of religious prophecy and a rewarding of faith. Even when the cold truth behind his religion is possibly exposed, the Priest refuses to bow. He has something to fight for, to protect and nourish, a renewed purpose bestowed by his faith.

The art in this volume is outstanding, from evoking kinetic energy of the battle scenes to an epic feel of the myth scenes of the creation of the Manowar armor. The team of Venditti and Nord make for a wonderful collaboration, making X-O one of the best titles in Valiant's line.
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Format: Paperback
Vengeance! I can't recommend this book enough! This TPB might be my favorite of the XO line...this is what the comic has been building up to since issue one. First, Aric must prevent an invasion fleet from taking over Earth. An advance team lands first, aliens armed in the less powerful Commando armor try to destroy Aric and Shanhara. Most of the Vine believe Shanhara to be godly, divine, and sacred. Others see it as a threat and want it gone. But the Commando armor is no match for Shanhara, even when they outnumber Aric 4 to 1. When Aric's old friend Gafti is nearly killed by the commander, Aric orders Shanhara to heal his wounds. Bonding with Shanhara is too much for Gafti and he goes mad with power. He finally regains his senses and sacrifices himself and destroys the invasion fleet that is orbiting Earth. Aric takes command of the commander's ship and orders it to go back to the spider alien home planet, so he can have his revenge. Here he finds unlikely allies with the spider aliens who believe Shanhara to be sacred and Aric also discovers an amazing surprise...there are still human slaves here, some of them Visgoths. World war breaks out...will the attack first, think later Aric win this battle or will he once again be taken prisoner by the Vine? Read it and find out!
Artist Cary Nord returns during this run and I think he's the best artist we've seen for this book, although the Clayton Crain covers really make me want to see a Crain drawn book.
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