Fearless Defenders #1: Undead Threats

Valkyrie and Misty Knight team up to deal with some weird undead artifacts messing with dead jerks.

Andy Hunsakerby Andy Hunsaker

Marvel doesn't have a lot of female heroes who are household names – as evidenced by there being only one in the Avengers movie. They would like to change that, though, and we'd all like to see it happen, too. So here comes The Fearless Defenders #1, which teams up Misty Knight, the women in charge of the recent Heroes for Hire series, and Valkyrie, who took center stage in a book called Fear Itself: The Fearless, which was one of the few good things associated with that lamentable event.

Writer Cullen Bunn had a hand in crafting the latter series, and he's keeping his Valkyrie mojo going with this first issue of what's slated to be an all- (or at least predominantly) female book, although judging by what's here at the moment, he doesn't plan to make a big deal out of that hook. There are just a lot of cool female characters and it seems he's planning to showcase them.

We open with Valkyrie enjoying a rainfall which soon turns to bloodfall. A bad omen if ever there was one. Cut to Misty fighting jerks on a boat during a storm over some funky old artifacts that a Ms. LeFay is trying to make off with. Nobody good is ever named Ms. LeFay, and although the classic Avengers villain Morgan Le Fay doesn't tend to be the type to employ high end mercs and helicopter goons, this could be a new day. Misty beats them down, but not before they make off with their primary acquisition. The secondary relics are brought back to a Dr. Annabelle Riggs, whose examination of an Asgardian sculpture leads to setting off a deadsong that starts bringing undead Nordic jerks to life to attack everybody. That's when Valkyrie swoops in to help fight them off, back to back with Misty Knight.

The dialogue is fairly light and breezy, although we know Bunn can go into some twisted areas, and the rising threat of the Doommaidens is likely going to go pretty dark in this arc. The art from Will Sliney is solid and slightly stylized for the most part, although with some iffy proportion issues here and there.

Overall, it seems we'll be getting some solid entertainment from Fearless Defenders. Go team!