Ivar Timewalker #1 Review

Posted January 26, 2015 by Alexander Handziuk in Comic Books

Written by: Fred Van Lente

Art by: Clayton Henry

Publisher: Valiant

***This review contains spoilers***

With the release of Ivar Timewalker #1, Valiant Next has officially begun, and it’s off to a hell of a great start. Ivar Timewalker is a fun, time-travel-filled adventure that balances intrigue with high-concept, high-flying fun.

The story starts with Dr. Neela Sethi, who is on the cusp of inventing time travel when Ivar breaks in and saves her from some creepy time-traveling henchmen. Together, they escape through, you guessed it, time. As much as the whole time travel motif has been done to death, Ivar Timewalker changes the formula substantially, and it works extremely well. For example, Ivar meets and greets himself from another era without any repercussions. In fact this meeting is met with a casual quip!

Ivar is a very engaging character. I say character and not hero as I’m still not sure if he is, in fact, a hero. While he does save Dr. Sethi’s life, and while he does have a very distinct charismatic charm about him, he also kills an innocent man and hides his guilt. Dr. Sethi, meanwhile is a really strong and capable character right off the bat as she knocks out Ivar with much tenacity. That being said, she is a bit brash, and she almost causes her own death as a result.

For my money, Fred Van Lente is one of the most underrated writers in comics today. I have yet to read an issue of his that I dislike. In just this first issue, he crafts two very engaging characters while making the series feel at home within the Valiant Universe. This is really cemented by the appearance of Rai, a character with his own ongoing Valiant series. I am very excited to see if Ivar and Neela will eventually travel and interact with other Valiant heroes and villains.

But words are only half of the equation of a successful comic book, and thankfully Clayton Henry delivers the other half with some gorgeous, lifelike art. He gives the book a real cinematic feel, and the explosions and character emotions look especially lifelike. I will say that my one quip with his work is the design for the villain on the last page, but seeing as this is just the first glimpse of her, I am hoping her design matures.

Ivan Timewalker #1 is a great start, not just for a new series but also for Valiant Next. Here is another example that cements Valiant as the publisher to follow in 2015 and beyond.

About the Author

Alexander Handziuk

Alex is a comic aficionado who loves Aquaman, Overwatch, the musical Hamilton and medium length strolls on beaches. Check him out on the Comics Dash Podcast, on twitter at @axehandziuk and in real life patrolling the borders of Canada.