Valiant Entertainment 2015
Written by Fred Van Lente
Illustrated by Clayton Henry
Coloured by Brian Reber
Last issue Neela left Ivar stranded in prehistoric times after blowing up at him for his keeping of secrets. This issue we see when Neela decided to show up in time, Feb 9, 2001 she was still wearing the Nazi uniform and had the Welrod which she promptly found a buyer for and went about her business. Now decked out in camouflage and with a new car Neela heads for the place where she is going to try to do what she wanted to do in the first place save her father.
Before she can get underway however she’s grab and pulled into a bar that is filled with well herself. The place is packed with time displaced versions of herself and boy none of them seem to be able to get along. It’s interesting because we’ve all heard so many times that a person cannot exist simultaneously in the space time continuum without possibly destroying the world but here Fred rewrites the rules and stresses the fact that Ivar was right. Regardless of how much you want to do something the Universe really won’t let you, what is meant to be is meant to be.
Understandably Neela is angry at Ivar but what we see here aside from determination is that her anger seems to be blinding her and causing her to rush her actions. The more she becomes frustrated the more things go awry. She needs to be level headed now more than ever but she can’t handle that. Fred’s characterization here is phenomenal you can feel and see, thanks to Clayton, her pain and agony of this time period. The loss of a parent through something that could have been prevented by future knowledge but at the time is unknown is just gut wrenching.
Something unexpected does happen in this issue though and the fact Fred does it without warning or that we don’t see the planning or thinking behind it makes it all the more spectacular. Then seeing how the Universe decides to take action and how everthing this issue is self contained and in one issue amazes me. Fred went there and takes you to a most unexpected place and you sit and think damn.
We see Ivar if only for a bit but he knows what he has to do and that’s gather his brothers and take the fight Oblivi-1. Which thanks to the last few pages isn’t going to be as easy as he thinks. Though the bartender where all the Neela’s are yeah he’s kept his cool throughout all this pretty nicely and he’s kind of funny to boot his reactions and dialogue makes ya chuckle among all the madness.
Clayton’s interior artwork with colours by Brian really does some great stuff. There are so many shades of Orphan Black happening among the Neela’s but everything is done so well here. The emotion he coaxes out of readers from his work here is a testament to what is possible by an artist.
Valiant should really be proud of the talent they have and the quality of the put out in the world and they’ve quickly come back and have become a real powerful voice in the market.