Valkyrie: Jane Foster #8 / Writer: Torunn Grønbekk & Jason Aaron / Artist: CAFU / Colorist: Jesus Aburtov / Letterer: VC’s Joe Sabino / Marvel / Release Date: 2/17/2020
I’ve been looking forward to this issue for a while- not just the start of a new arc but also a new co-writer!
Torunn Grønbekk is one of only three women to write Jane Foster as a character thus far (at least post her becoming Thor- there was her appearance in Kathryn Immonen’s run on Journey into Mystery).
So I was really looking forward to seeing the start of her new arc! Not only because of the representational importance of getting a woman writing a full arc for Jane.
Grønbekk’s heritage is- shall we say- pretty relevant to stories based on Norse mythology.
(And funnily enough, Waititi has brought on Jennifer Kayton Robinson to co-write the script for Love and Thunder which, I don’t know if you know, but might involve Jane Foster? I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before…)
New Arc – At the End of All Things
But much like her previous arcs in Valkyrie so far- they are to do with Jane’s past, coming to terms with her own history. She’s a widow, a doctor, a cancer survivor and a superhero- a superhero whose powers are a gift from literal actual gods.
‘The Sacred and Profane’ was about accepting the legacy from Brunhilde, ‘Strange Aeons’ was about accepting the strange duality of healing and death.
‘At The End of All Things’… It might be spoilers to suggest what this by related to- but is hinted in the scenes released in a preview. Jane is a doctor and she recognizes a particular deadly illness when she sees it.
And considering how you generally treat cancer, how Jane opted to be treated for her own cancer- I would be very interested to see how that pans out here.
Cafu returning to art duties is always a plus! His work always has the edge of realism, but still with enough dynamism to lend it well to an action-packed, fantasy leaning superhero epic. Seeing his art, especially in the context of this story, reminds me of the criminally underrated Final Fantasy: Spirits Within. It’s, to me, as close to watching a movie in comic book form as you could get.
The colours by Jesus Aburtov are great as always- there’s one scene towards the end where you see gold shining in darkness that is so good I want to hang it on my wall.
I am 100% in broken record territory, but please buy this series. The first trade is out now. There’s another amazing epic arc by Grønbekk after this three-parter I need this series in my life like you wouldn’t believe.
Verdict: 5 out of 5