Valiant Comics - Valiant Heroes, Acclaimed Games
By Hervé St-Louis
November 6, 2002 - 12:09
VALIANT HEROES, ACCLAIMED GAMES
I jumped in early on Valiant's bang wagon. I had pre-ordered my Harbinger books from the Previews book (or whatever it was in the days when they were several comic book distributors). I was also there for Rai # 3, Unity, X-O Manowar and my favourite Valiant title ever, Archer and Armstrong.
When Valiant started, they had some gimmicks, but good contents. It went after the college crowd, tired of the old DC/Marvel stuff. All the books had the same look and strong stories. No books were rushed out. New talent were carefully matched with old pros to help groom them.
So what went wrong with Valiant? How could a successful publisher who understood marketing fold? Their biggest mistake was getting rid of Jim Shooter. He was driven, but damn, he was good.
'Time is Not Absolute'
Valiant became a joke after this event. Bob Layton and the investors thought that with the established books and creators there, they could hold their own. They were wrong. Without their strong editor, Valiant created many books without any direction. Worse, they could not manage difficult personalities like Barry Windsor Smith.
The next year, When everybody from Dark Horse to DC and Malibu got into the business of introducing new universes, instead of improving their existing books, Valiant introduced six more! Long live Valiant. It was a good idea, but it failed. As for my copies, I've decided to keep them. They were great comics.
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