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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From strength to strength
Reprints issues 14 to 17 ~ so you get 4 issues cheaper than buying them individually ~ cool to read collected as a trade.
This is a fantastic story, but has a light side with the interaction between Archer and Armstrong. Enjoying how this story plays out involving the sect. Well not just the sect ~ lots of different cult groups acting as you would expect cult groups...
Published 11 months ago by Phantom

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Over the Top
Archer and Armstrong started out, when it was first published in the 90s, as a very personal story from the great Barry Windsor Smith, combining serious themes with crazy, but balanced humour. Both back then and in this incarnation, that has been a tough example to follow. With the previous TPB (Far Faraway) I felt van Lente and Henry/Pérez had managed perfectly...
Published 4 months ago by IMHO


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From strength to strength, 23 Mar. 2014
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
Reprints issues 14 to 17 ~ so you get 4 issues cheaper than buying them individually ~ cool to read collected as a trade.
This is a fantastic story, but has a light side with the interaction between Archer and Armstrong. Enjoying how this story plays out involving the sect. Well not just the sect ~ lots of different cult groups acting as you would expect cult groups to act.

Great book, great story by Fred Van Lente has been very consistent and purposeful. Such well planned writing, none of the books so far seem like fillers. Will be interesting to see how Archer and Armstrong is introduced further into the valiant universe. We have Armstrong's brother ~ the eternal warrior, but lots of other interesting possibilities.

Well done Valiant.
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5.0 out of 5 stars When Good Mates Turn Bad., 25 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
Archer (Obie) is off on a mission, one where he plans to use Project Rising Spirit for information about his past and rid the Earth of all the Sect factions, who are currently fighting each other for control. To do this he will also use his buddy Armstrong (Aram) all because he is having a massive sulk over discovering Aram in intimate circumstances with his infatuation, Mary-Maria.

As usual Fred Van Lente spins a marvellous tale of fun and intrigue mixed with this jealous immaturity disguised as a singular purpose. This volume "Sect Civil War" finds Aram and Ivar (Timewalker) on a massive time travelling booze binge (They should be so lucky), after they eventually escaped from the Faraway with Mary-Maria, where they had been abandoned there by a jealous Obie in the previous volume. Whilst Obie manipulates the factions of the Sect and abuses the trust of a severely hung over ball of emotion who has been missing his buddy, Mary-Maria has wasted no time in taking advantage of circumstances, finding herself a comfortable new niche. She later puts Obie in his place, making him realise some home truths that hopefully will jolt him to his senses in time to rectify this futile path he is on.

Fred Van Lente's work on Archer and Armstrong makes for really enjoyable reading. He has a way of bringing a smile to my face with every turn of the page. He weaves in-jokes, witty overtures and slapstick visuals such as when Obie is enticing the factions with the lure of delivering Aram, we see a video of Aram casually waiting, leaning against a Jeep picking his nose and digesting the evidence. These are the little priceless images thrown in that crack me up laughing every time.

The Beer and Man Stats during the Aram Pub crawl through time, were a lovely touch as well. I cannot speak highly enough about this title, and this fourth volume is no exception. This is comic entertainment at its best, where neither hero nor villain is ever allowed the circumstance to take themselves, or be taken too seriously. Good things happen in this book, good things that will make you laugh.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Conspiracy Theories Collide, a Time Travelling Pub-Crawl, and Sugary Sweet Justice Fuel!!, 24 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
Where we left off: Archer & Armstrong have defeated General Redacted in the Faraway. Unfortunately, Archer walked in on Armstrong and Archer’s step-sister/love interest, Mary-Maria, having a… uhm… “Intimate” celebration of their own. Declaring his friendship with Amrstrong over, and stealing Ivar the Timewalker’s time-arc map, a furious Archer intercepts a time-arc out of the Faraway - abandoning everyone else in the mythical land outside of time and space.

What follows in Vol. 4, “Sect Civil War” is, well, exactly that. The various groups that make up the Sect are set into conflict with each other, Archer makes a deal with Project Rising Spirit, Mary –Maria takes on a new identity, and Armstrong… well, Armstrong and his brother Ivar take an opportunity to travel through time on a pub crawl!

Fred Van Lente continues his ongoing Archer & Armstrong epic in an arc that, while not as strong as the previous three arcs, does a tremendous job in addressing outstanding items from the other stories while setting up plot points that will have impact on future arcs to come. Khari Evans comes on board as artist after several arcs on Harbinger, and I appreciated the familiarity I had with his style in making this read more enjoyable.

As others have indicated, a lot goes down in this story, and that may have been a detriment. For an arc entitled “Sect Civil War,” we sure did not see much of the civil war. Meanwhile, we are asked to accept that this infighting has destabilized the world, though we never see much of how. Indeed, if such pandemonium has been unleashed, surely some of the other titles in the line would become involved? But, aside from a mention in Quantum & Woody, nada… though part of me suspects maybe that was the point.

Regardless, my love affair with A&A continues on, as does our story. As a result of Archer’s actions, Project: Rising Spirit has a severe grump on for our two heroes, and they are looking to take them out with their top operatives… Bloodshot & the H.A.R.D. Corps!

PS… Fred Van Lente needs to write a Timewalker ongoing! Please, Valiant… make it happen!!!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fill up on Justice Fuel!, 23 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
Vol. 4 of Archer and Armstrong sees our intrepid dup dealing with the fallout of events that occurred in the Faraway. Archer sees Armstrong’s fling with his ‘love’ Mary-Maria as the worst form of betrayal while Armstrong comes to slowly realize the harm he’s done to his newest, and perhaps best, friend he’s had. Oh, and by the way, a civil war erupts between the factions of the Sect that threatens to destabilize and crash society. But first things first, right?

A huge part of Valiant’s success so far has been the quality writers they have working on their books. Josh Dysart on Harbinger, Robert Vendetti on X-O Manowar and here, Fred Van Lente on Archer and Armstrong. As some other reviewers have mentioned, the Sect civil war seen here is more in the background per se, a threat and situation that must be dealt with (in our duo’s own zany way) but first they need to learn to trust and accept each other again. Armstrong goes a pub crawl through time with his brother Ivar that is certainly a highlight of this volume but Archer loses some of his initial innocence from what he’s seen and learned. He sets out to follow up on the clues of his parents and origins with a new steely determination and hardy intelligence (and we learn the true value of justice fuel).

It culminates in a surprising ending, which shows why this title remains one of the strongest Valiant is publishing as our characters are pushed to grow and learn in ways that in the end, only serve to strengthen their friendship.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Superhero pub crawl!, 20 April 2014
By 
Sam Quixote - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
I like a good story/plot-driven book as much as the next reader but what I really like seeing, and this is partly because it rarely happens, is a superhero comic where the superheroes decide they’re not going to do what they normally do; they’re just going to be selfish and think about themselves for a change - maybe even blow off some steam doing something stupid! That’s basically what happens in the first half of Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War.

The partnership is dissolved after Archer catches Armstrong in bed with his adopted sister Mary Maria in the Faraway (see Volume 3). Archer has decided to do a job for Project Rising Spirit in return for information of his true origins: obtain the Wheel of Aten which will control all of the Sects. Meanwhile, Armstrong’s brother Ivar decides to cheer his brother up by going on a time-travelling pub crawl!

The 3000 year pub crawl where Armstrong and Ivar drink history’s greatest beers was definitely my favourite part of the book. Artist Khari Evans draws a small Armstrong in the corner of the page showing how drunk he gets the more he drinks with stats detailing how much alcohol is in his blood, how many pints he’s downed, as well as info on the beer itself - ingenious!

Fred Van Lente’s experience writing his Action Philosophers comic comes in handy with this issue as the reader learns bits of esoteric history like the London Beer Flood of 1814, which is awesome.

Archer steals the show though. What happens when you get your heart broken? Well, Archer goes all super-emo, growing his hair out and begins Archer’s War Journal (like Marvel’s Punisher) but he’s still too Ned Flanders to pull off an edgy, angry tone while writing. “Some call it fried dough. Some call them funnel cakes. I call it Justice Fuel.” he writes, before heading to a McDonald’s where he bitterly notes that the Happy Meal only enrages him further - but he does like addition of the toy.

The Sect War itself is good too though it’s a bit rushed to fit in between Archer & Armstrong’s mini-dramas. I’m not entirely sure who or what the various Sects are or what they’re about - like, what do the Gnomes of Zurich or the Hashish Eaters have to do with running the world? - but they’re an entertainingly varied and nutty bunch and how the Sect War concludes is really good for where the series is headed next.

Some comics titles start off well and lose steam the more it goes until the creative team needs to be replaced but Fred Van Lente’s writing seems to only get better with Archer & Armstrong. Sect Civil War is both my favourite volume in the series and my favourite Van Lente book so far - it’s a really fun comic that doesn’t take itself too seriously but still manages to have lots of imagination and intelligence to spare.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The fun continues!, 2 Oct. 2014
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
The fourth volume of Archer and Armstrong reprints issues 14 through 17, the Sect Civil War! This arc further delves into the many different conspiracy theories and factions of the sect. We are given an origin story of the Sect, which dates back to Egypt in 1336 BC. It started as a power grab between 4 powerful men who wanted to stop the chaos caused by the King Akhenaten and his belief in him as the one true god. Their priority was to keep their profitability by keeping the existing religion. With the support of the priests and the assistance of the Harem of Akhenaten, he was quietly dealt with. Once they had him killed, they now had to deal with the courts Poet, friend of the King, Aram-Ho-Tep. Over centuries, their influence and Sect grew in size and worldwide control as did their hatred of their enemy Aram. Armstrong, in present day is no longer travelling with Archer due to the events that transpired at the end of the previous arc. Looking to discover more about his own past. Archer is on a mission and is aided by some of those he once fought against (PRS!!). Armstrong is still featured heavily in this volume in fact we are even treated to a time travelling pub crawl with him and his brother. As always Fred Van Lente does not disappoint this time aided by work with by Kari Evans.
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5.0 out of 5 stars ... & Armstrong through its run has developed into my favorite Valiant series, 22 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
Archer & Armstrong through its run has developed into my favorite Valiant series. Much of Valiant is very good right now, but Archer & Armstrong does a nice job capturing a balance of action and fun and with Archer & Armstrong 4: Sect Civil War the fun continues.

Archer & Armstrong rely a lot on gimmicks but they generally pay off in this series more than they do in Valiant’s other duo comic series Quantum & Woody. I like the issue involving Armstrong and his lost brother Ivar’s pub crawl through time. I don’t know that I needed the updates on Armstrong’s sobriety and felt the issue stood on its own, but it didn’t bother me enough to ruin the comic…I would love to see more Armstrong and Ivar issues or a reunion of all three brothers.

I do have to say that this volume of Archer & Armstrong is a little down in regards to previous volumes. It isn’t because the writing has faltered, but because I really enjoy the bizarre team aspect of this book, and I hate to see Archer “growing up”. Once Archer’s innocence is out of the bag, it will be hard to put it back in. Archer has such a positive view of the world in previous volumes that seeing him become “Dark Archer” (even though it is played as a joke) isn’t necessarily a good thing for the series as a whole.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Archer and Armstrong: Reliably Brilliant, 28 Sept. 2014
By 
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
Collecting issues 14-17 of Valiant's 'Archer and Armstrong' comic, this book puts the gas pedal through the floor as the tenuously-allied Sect finds its organisation collapsing in on itself, all thanks to the book's protagonists, Archer and Armstrong (and also Ivar, the Time Walker!).

As ever the book is a great read, full of action, intrigue, comedy and drama as the two 'heroes' and their supporting cast find their way from the front of the book to the back. The writing is intelligent, entertaining and genuinely funny, with lots of witty little quips, one-liners, in jokes and visual gags. I'd really be surprised if somebody manages to read this from front to back without actually laughing out loud at least once, so for those that like their reads a little lighter in tone, this book should really suit.

The art is a pleasure to look over throughout, and some of the colouring really helps add tone and feeling to the particular panel or page, and some of it helps to add to the sense of action occuring. Overall a very nice book to look at.

As with my reviews of previous Archer and Armstrong volumes, I'd have to heartily recommend that if people aren't reading A+A by now, they'd better get started, or miss out!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Finding himself on the losing end of a love triangle forces young Archer to grow up a little ..., 23 Sept. 2014
By 
Rob McG (Jacksonville, FL) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
In the fourth Archer and Armstrong trade paperback, our boys are having a bit of a falling out. Not surprisingly there is a woman involved … Archer’s long-time sort-of-crush, Mary Maria, who wound up in a compromising position with the thousands-of-years-old Armstrong. And when I say “in a compromising position,” I mean “in bed.”

Sect Civil War collects issues 14-17 from the outstanding comic book series. Fred Van Lente provides the usual quality story; Khari Evans (he’s more familiar to fans of Harbinger) and Chriscross provide the art. It’s solid on every end.

Finding himself on the losing end of a love triangle forces young Archer to grow up a little bit. That’s fine, I suppose. He needed that, but he responds in a way that wasn’t what I expected. It gives you an idea of which way this corner of the Valiant universe is starting to turn. This version of Archer is much more powerful, with much more potential, than in the original Valiant comics from the 1990s. And that is a great thing. There is a fantastic story here and it is told in such a witty and creative way that it makes this book an easy recommendation for anybody who loves to read outstanding comic books.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Archer and Armstrong Vol. 4: Sect Civil War, 23 Sept. 2014
By 
Jaden_Sai (Portland, OR United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP (Paperback)
This trade paperback includes Valiant's Archer and Armstrong issues #14-17, from the mind of Fred Van Lente with art by Khari Evans and Chriscross.

This is another great volume, hats off to you - Mr. Van Lente. One of my favorite series just gets better and better.

After the sordid events at the end of the last volume, Archer is rolling solo as he leaves the rest of the crew in the Faraway and heads for Project Rising Spirit. Armstrong is time jumping and beer chugging with his brother Ivar, complete with drinking stats for Armstrong, so we can keep up with his levels of drunkenness.

We get an origin of The Sect, which takes us back to ancient Eqypt. In the present day, the various factions of The Sect (The One Percent, The Black Block, The Master Builders, The Sisters of Perpetual Darkness to name a few) are erupting into open conflict over the Wheel of Aten, which is rumored to give its possessor control over all factions of The Sect, and Archer and Armstrong find themselves on different sides. As the Sect Civil War ends, we learn who unites the factions and will lead them and I can only guess at what problems lie ahead for the new leadership.
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Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP
Archer & Armstrong Volume 4: Sect Civil War TP by Fred Van Lente (Paperback - 11 Mar. 2014)
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