C2E2 2018: The Valiant Harbinger Wars 2 & Beyond Panel With Matt Kindt

by Hannah Means Shannon

In the Harbinger Wars 2 And Beyond Panel at C2E2, New Director of Sales Mel Caylo, newly promoted VP of Sales Atom Freeman, writer Matt Kindt, and editor Karl Bollers took part.

Kindt says that he always hated big events and crossovers in comics as a kid, and so now getting to handle a big crossover allows him to fix all the little things that used to bother him. Kindt had an original idea to start the event with Livewire dropping a bunch of satellites out of the sky, and Raul Allen has tried to humor him in such ideas.

The story of Harbinger Wars 2 is about Livewire trying to fight back and protect psiots, and the plot is really driven by characters reacting to her actions. What side are the various players going to be on?

X-O Manowar is coming back to Earth at precisely the wrong time, of course, and he’ll find that he has to take sides, too, Kindt said. In issue #14, Kindt and Ariel Olvetti lead the character into Harbinger Wars 2 with his return to Earth. Kindt says that reading this issue after it was complete made him emotional because of the way the art acts things out. There are a lot of moments in that issue he’s been wanting to do for 13 issues, Kindt said.

Issue #15 comes out in May, with “Barbarians” Part 1, starting a new arc for the character. They decided to go a separate story set in Aric of Dacia’s past. They needed ideas for publishing X-O stories during the release of Harbinger Wars 2, so they chose going into his past. There’s not a specific tie-in to Harbinger Wars 2, but it adds “layers” to an understanding of that story. He had fun working with Trevor Hairsine on this, creating something other than Divinity with him.

Regarding Ninjak, Kindt still feels very possessive of the character, and was really jealous when Christos Gage wrote the Ninja-K series. It was the first time he’s had professional jealousy of this kind.

The Harbinger Wars 2 crossover is starting with the “Prelude #1”, illustrated by Raul Allen and Patricia Martin. They really cement that Livewire is the star of Harbinger Wars 2, Kindt said. It lands on May 2nd, 2018.

Working with Tomas Giorello again on Harbinger Wars 2 #1 is a treat for Kindt, and for fans judging from the preview artwork that’s been released.

There’s also going to be a Harbinger Wars 2 tie-in for Quantum & Woody as a one-off issue in #6 by Eliot Rahal and Francis Portella with Andrew Dalhouse, with a cover by Ariel Olivetti.

Bloodshot Salvation #9, illustrated by Renato Guedes and written by Jeff Lemire, takes us into the past of Bloodhound in WWI. Previous to this we’ve been following Bloodshot into the Deadside.

Bloodshot Salvation #10 with art by Doug Braithwait and Jordie Bellaire starts a new arc, bringing Bloodshot Salvation “in for a landing”. Now we move forward in time to the year 4001AD. Bloodshot will meet up with his “counterpart” in the future. It brings things full circle for the past and future Bloodshots to meet.

Ninja-K #6 starts a new arc, “Coalition”, written by Christos Gage, with art by Juan Jose Ryp.

Kindt broke in to tell a story that illustrates how Kindt is the biggest Ninjak fan in the world. Kindt was a fan of Ninjak in the 90’s. Dinesh Shamdasani gave him a Ninjak ring that was made as a promo back in the 90’s. He didn’t know it existed, so he was blown away. Flying to New York to wear the ring for the convention, he exited the plane and ran to the rest room. While in the bathroom, his ring fell off. In that moment, he knew he was the number one fan, he said, laughing. End of story. He still has that ring.

The new Shadowman #1 is sold out at the distributor level and the second printing is on the way. A new arc called “Dead and Gone” will be starting with issue #4, on sale June 20th. By Andy Diggle and Shawn Martinbrough, with Doug Braithwait, and also Renato Guedes, this arc will be taking us through different time period of previous Shadowmen. We’ll end up in the prehistoric past with the first Shadowman. The third arc will start with issue #8 in “Rag and Bone”, by Diggle and Stephen Segovia.

As announced at the Diamond Summit this week, Valiant will be doing a new Britannia story, written by Peter Milligan and illustrated by Robert Gill. The first two volumes featuring a Roman “detectioner”, one of the world’s first detectives, really built toward this series, Freeman said.

The Life and Death of Toyo Harada, a six issue prestige series, will be starting in March 2019, Valiant leaked, since that date had not previously been announced.

Art will be by a number of artists, including Mico Suayan, Cafu, and more and will explore the many unknown periods of time in Harada’s life. They’re taking a long time over this book to really “get things right”, Freeman said.

Regarding the Bloodshot movie, currently in the works, which will star Vin Diesel, Diesel has been posting pre-production info on social media. Around the release of the movie, they are going to build an “ambitious publishing program”, Caylo said, which will not leave fans disappointed. Freeman described getting Valiant “into film” as a “long haul”,  but it’s been about getting this “right”.

Ninjak vs. The Valiant Universe is finally complete Mel Caylo announced, to applause, and the first episode will start airing on April 21st, with one episode released per day. There’s a tie-in comic series still available in shops, with issue #14 out in April.

Fans were treated to two clips from the digital series, the first featuring Ninjak and X-O Manowar fighting in a forest, and the second Ninjak fighting Archer & Armstrong in an industrial warehouse setting.