The current run of X-O Manowar is ending with issue 50. To commemorate it’s amazing run Valiant Entertainment is randomly inserting one of 50 “micro-prints” of the main character rendered by 50 different artists into the last 4 issues. The kicker is that they are also randomly inserting original art sketches, which totally got me on board. I felt that I was showing unparalleled maturity and restraint by only ordering 10 copies.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Valiant Comics, they were originally around in the 90’s. A time in history where everyone collected comics, and gimmicks to sell books ruled. As a young adult during this time I really couldn’t get enough. I was a big fan of Valiant then, so when the company came back a few years ago I was totally on board for the relaunch. So far it’s been (mostly) awesome, and I absolutely love these books.
One of the classic marketing gimmicks in the 1990’s was to poly bag your book and sometimes include a goodie like a trading card. As an insane anal retentive teenage collector you would buy a copy to read and one to keep safely sealed. When I think of ploy bagged comics I immediately think of Todd MacFarlane’s Spider-Man #1, Superman #75 (the iconic death issue), and X-Force #1.
I was so excited for the launch of X-Force that I rode my bicycle 24 miles round trip to the nearest comic book store on release day. Not only was it poly bagged with 1 of 5 different trading cards, but due to a printing error a cover variant was created. Needless to say I bought a lot of X-Force #1 to get a full set. This X-O giveaway really hits my nostalgia gland pretty freaking hard.
The micro-prints are actually 4×6 inch trading cards, but look really cool and the card stock feels nice. I wasn’t expecting much from them, but now I think it would be fun to try to collect a full set. The print is held in place by a thin adhesive goo strip to a page of the comic. Peeling them out so not to damage the print or comic can be tricky unless you take your time.
Out of the 10 issues of #47 I ordered, I got 6 prints, 4 doubles, and no original sketches. Slightly disappointing but that’s how the random comic lottery works. I did better then expected with issue #48 with 9 prints, no doubles, and the very last one I opened included a sketch by artist Amanda Semler!
Needless to say I was pretty pumped. So pumped that I still had time to edit that month’s comic order and doubled down with 20 issues for #50. So with another 30 of these coming I hope to score at least one more sketch. If this isn’t the geek equivalent to scratch off lottery tickets I don’t know what is.
If you haven’t checked out X-O Manowar yet you really should if your a comic fan. The elevator pitch premise – what if Conan The Barbarian got Iron Man’s armor, and was then transported to current day thanks to the magic of faster than light space travel at the hands of alien abductors. It’s available in trade paperback as well as beautiful hardcover collections if single comics aren’t your thing.
As mentioned I also have some doubles to trade. If interested hit me up in the comments and I’ll be in touch.