The Death of Shanhara

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The Death of Shanhara

Post by jmatt »

I just reached this arc in my re-read. I think this was the first change that really buckled my hope in the line. The New Harbingers attempt made me wary, the Rai character switches were infuriating, but this one crushed me.

They teased this arc with promo ads that concluded "Please don't shoot us...". I didn't need to, you just shot youself. In the head.

It was like month after month they were going out of their way to alienate the customer base.

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by missjay »

yeah I didn't like that part either :(

Was this happening before Valiant sold to Acclaim? (is that right? I may be wrong I don't know this stuff off the top of my head!)

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by MarrowMan »

missjay wrote:yeah I didn't like that part either :(

Was this happening before Valiant sold to Acclaim? (is that right? I may be wrong I don't know this stuff off the top of my head!)
That happened waaaaay before that

Issue 28 (1994)

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by kevinbastos »

I am actually okay with this. Tought it was an interesting way to 'kill' a character, but not kill, too. Certainly much better than the clone/disguise/hidden garbage in so many other comics.
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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by jmatt »

kevinbastos wrote:I am actually okay with this. Tought it was an interesting way to 'kill' a character, but not kill, too. Certainly much better than the clone/disguise/hidden garbage in so many other comics.
It was just too soon. Like so many of the other changes, I can't help but feel like they were trying to build a legal firewall against potential IP suits so as to open the doors for a buyout.

At year eight, to shake up a waning fanbase? Maybe. But at year two? :?

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by missjay »

I don't have the experience from reading this when it first came out (as I read most of X-O straight through this year...)
As the previous posts have said... this happened relatively early in the company's career, when they were pretty solid?
On top of their game?

I'm just wondering, from a readers perspective at the time, what were your first impressions when this story arc was revealed?
Did you want to walk away from V? Or away from XO?

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by jmatt »

missjay wrote:I don't have the experience from reading this when it first came out (as I read most of X-O straight through this year...)
As the previous posts have said... this happened relatively early in the company's career, when they were pretty solid?
On top of their game?

I'm just wondering, from a readers perspective at the time, what were your first impressions when this story arc was revealed?
Did you want to walk away from V? Or away from XO?
I didn't walk away but I wasn't happy. And they knew readers wouldn't be happy that's why they advertised it with "Please don't shoot us...". So why would you do something you knew would make readers unhappy?

The only conclusion I can draw is that they were trying to scoot away from as much Shooter-era IP as possible.

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by grendeljd »

jmatt wrote:
missjay wrote:I don't have the experience from reading this when it first came out (as I read most of X-O straight through this year...)
As the previous posts have said... this happened relatively early in the company's career, when they were pretty solid?
On top of their game?

I'm just wondering, from a readers perspective at the time, what were your first impressions when this story arc was revealed?
Did you want to walk away from V? Or away from XO?
I didn't walk away but I wasn't happy. And they knew readers wouldn't be happy that's why they advertised it with "Please don't shoot us...". So why would you do something you knew would make readers unhappy?

The only conclusion I can draw is that they were trying to scoot away from as much Shooter-era IP as possible.
The last issue of X-O I bought when they were coming out was #29... I don't recall specifically why I stopped, but I'm pretty sure it was in part due to this story line. I recently snagged 30-32 to read... I didn't miss much, did I? I don't feel that it was a completely terrible story idea, but it does feel like a cheap ploy.
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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by jmatt »

grendeljd wrote:The last issue of X-O I bought when they were coming out was #29... I don't recall specifically why I stopped, but I'm pretty sure it was in part due to this story line. I recently snagged 30-32 to read... I didn't miss much, did I? I don't feel that it was a completely terrible story idea, but it does feel like a cheap ploy.
They tried to replace the armor that Aric fought for and won after many years of enslavement with a pod from one Solar happened to find lying around on Saturn.

That's like telling King Arthur that he needn't worry about a broken Excalibur, this sword is nearly as good. And oh, Gollum? Forget precious, here's another ring, dont'cha just love it?

Sometimes only the original will do.

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by jmatt »

grendeljd wrote:The last issue of X-O I bought when they were coming out was #29... I don't recall specifically why I stopped, but I'm pretty sure it was in part due to this story line. I recently snagged 30-32 to read... I didn't miss much, did I? I don't feel that it was a completely terrible story idea, but it does feel like a cheap ploy.
Hey, King Arthur? Don't worry about Excalibur, isn't this sword nearly as good? Gollum? Forget about the Precious, see how shiny this ring is? Here, try it on.

It's not a horrible story idea. And as far as cheap ploys go, sure, in year 12 when the fan base needs a new twist, go for it.

But issue 28? facepalm

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by grendeljd »

jmatt wrote:They tried to replace the armor that Aric fought for and won after many years of enslavement with a pod from one Solar happened to find lying around on Saturn.

That's like telling King Arthur that he needn't worry about a broken Excalibur, this sword is nearly as good. And oh, Gollum? Forget precious, here's another ring, dont'cha just love it?

Sometimes only the original will do.
Agreed.

I was wondering if that was an arbitrary story invented for XO, or if it had been established somewhere in Solar that the extra armour was there on Saturn...
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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by myron »

grendeljd wrote:
jmatt wrote:They tried to replace the armor that Aric fought for and won after many years of enslavement with a pod from one Solar happened to find lying around on Saturn.

That's like telling King Arthur that he needn't worry about a broken Excalibur, this sword is nearly as good. And oh, Gollum? Forget precious, here's another ring, dont'cha just love it?

Sometimes only the original will do.
Agreed.

I was wondering if that was an arbitrary story invented for XO, or if it had been established somewhere in Solar that the extra armour was there on Saturn...
iirc yes
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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by jmatt »

Yes, in an early issue of Solar he defeats an alien squad on Saturn.

I read the issue where he retrieves the pod from Saturn a few days ago. At first, he's thinking of slipping into the armor and extracting the ring so Aric can wield it. But then he notices the pod and just grabs that.

Meaning that there was still another ManoWar class armor residing on Saturn. I can't recall if it was ever put into play in subsequent issues but it certainly was a nice setup for a future character or story arc.

Just too soon.

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by dave »

The follow up to this was even worse I thought. It was pretty creepy to have Paul? iirc sacrifice himself to be the new armor? It was supposed to be so emotional, but the character was as endearing as a red-shirted crew member on the Enterprise.

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by jmatt »

dave wrote:The follow up to this was even worse I thought. It was pretty creepy to have Paul? iirc sacrifice himself to be the new armor? It was supposed to be so emotional, but the character was as endearing as a red-shirted crew member on the Enterprise.
Another reason to consider it too soon.

Paul had been around here and there and did a lot of bonding with Randy but not so much with Aric. Paul did sacrifice himself to save the gang in the Death of Shanhara arc -- but yeah, not enough for an OMG moment.

He wasn't quite a red shirt but maybe just a notch or two above that.

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by jmatt »

Is that a tear stain running along the right hand border? Fitting, because I wanted to cry. :cry:

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by bamaphilosopher »

jmatt wrote:I just reached this arc in my re-read. I think this was the first change that really buckled my hope in the line. The New Harbingers attempt made me wary, the Rai character switches were infuriating, but this one crushed me.

They teased this arc with promo ads that concluded "Please don't shoot us...". I didn't need to, you just shot youself. In the head.

It was like month after month they were going out of their way to alienate the customer base.
Absolutely agree! This, what you mention about Harbinger and Ra, and Archer and Armstrong sucking really bad as well: that's when I began to become disillusioned with Valiant. I stuck around for awhile longer, until sometime between Chaos Effect and Birthquake, when it was sucking so bad I just couldn't take it anymore.

But yes, the death of Shanhara is perhaps the thing I was most angry with them about. Bob Layton likes to talk about how the quality went down after he was no longer involved. But, sadly, some of it began on his watch, in my opinion. This is an excellent example of how they didn't care about their readers anymore. That, and they stopped doing letter columns. It's like they just quit caring, and it showed.

Sting leaving the Harbinger book was probably the second biggest gripe I had with them. Oh, and also, they totally changed what they were originally going to do with Timewalker, and I didn't like that either.

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by dornwolf »

bamaphilosopher wrote:
Oh, and also, they totally changed what they were originally going to do with Timewalker,.
See this is where my curiosity gets the better of me. I was never around for any of this stuff. So what was the original plan for Timewalker.

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by omega_override »

While I may not have the sense of nostalgia for original Valiant like the vast majority of you, I felt that this arc was very strong and reinforced by Turok's second cameo appearance. Watching Shanhara slowly degrade overtime under Randy's watch (especially during her fight with Ax) was an interesting touch all things considered (Manowar armor feeding off of the human condition to adapt to that person's emotions/inner turmoils)
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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by 1st Among Equals »

So how many issues before they destroy the armor is VEI ?

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Re: The Death of Shanhara

Post by dornwolf »

1st Among Equals wrote:So how many issues before they destroy the armor is VEI ?
Well book of the dead is next so...not that much longer I guess


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