Always When You Want to Have a Good Time… – Heralds

Whenever the power cosmic rears its head, you just know that it can never be a good thing and that something, somewhere, is going to go wrong.  Whether it is Doctor Doom trying to harness it, or Galactus showing up on Earth again even though he has been defeated countless times and you would think he would just give up, or the Surfer just flying around – you know something that cannot be any good is going to happen.  Almost as if it were, dare it be said, a herald.

Such is the case with this series written by Kathryn Immonen and starring everyone’s favourite heroines who just happen to be Valkyrie, She-Hulk, Hellcat, Emma Frost and Photon.  And sometimes Abigail Brand and a little Invisible Woman thrown in for good measure.  And Valeria.  Who does not love Valeria?

They all come together, most of them, to celebrate Emma’s birthday in Las Vegas but soon, must deal with something else altogether.  That would be a woman known as Frances who has started acting quite strangely and is found lying out in the road after going a little crazy.  But Francis is only part of the problem as the other half happens to be Frankie Raye, the formerly living herald of Galactus known as Nova and the power cosmic which has somehow returned her, or part of her, to the living.

What makes this book great though is the humour.  Yes, the story is good and we get Frankie Raye back, or at least the Nova entity, but it is the banter that takes place between the women that make the trip so enjoyable.  Everyone likes each other and it is apparent, but the quips that fly back and forth are sometimes so funny that you forget that you are reading about a girl who is in trouble.  Hellcat is pretty entertaining, but it is usually Valkyrie that steals the show with her matter of fact facts.

Funny to note as well, is how Emma Frost is probably one of the most beautiful and striking women in the entirety of the Marvel universe and yet she is so vain about her age.  It is also quite amusing how the women all compete with one another throughout the series, especially Hellcat, who always seems to want to one-up everyone and how disappointed she was that she did not get to beat up the Hitler clone.  A lot of jokes and some very clever writing from Immonen.

The artwork is decent by Tonci Zonjic, James Harren and Emma Rios, and even though there are three different artists, it looked fairly consistent throughout the book though, there were a few moments when you could tell that the art was noticeably different.  These three pencillers were also well chosen as the facial expressions that each of our characters sport drive Immonen’s words and humour home.  Of course the entire book as a whole looked good and was a joy to read.

It is a shame that this tale was only a miniseries.  An ongoing would have been nice to see, especially if Immonen could keep the same tone and feeling throughout the title.  There was the Fearless Defenders book by Cullen Bunn, consisting of an all-women team, but perhaps it was that light-hearted tone that was missing which lead to its cancellation.  At some point, Marvel will hopefully give this team, or another one that is similar without an X in the title, a shot.

4 out of 5

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