Our painstaking reprints of Hal Foster's sumptuous epic — still scanned directly from Foster's personal collection of syndicate proofs, providing the most spectacular iteration of this material since its original publication in Sunday newspaper supplements 60 years ago — enters the 1950s with this volume.
The entire first third consists of the second half of the 15-month-long (!) Roman epic "The Missionaries," which includes a dramatic, life-changing experience for Prince Geoffrey (aka "Arf") at its climax. After a brief stay back in Camelot (where the irrepressible Val and his friend Gawain indulge in some not-very-knightly pranks that end up costing them dearly), the two, accompanied by Arf, are summoned back to Thule, where Aleta presents Val with new twin daughters!
Foster also reintroduces such favorite characters as the piratical Boltar and the Indian princess Tillicum (now an unlikely romantic couple), and the year concludes with the beginning of "Valhalla" (another installment in the ongoing story of the problematic Christianization of the Vikings) — which includes one of Foster's most dramatic and gorgeous splash panels (used here on the cover).
And as a back-up, Prince Valiant Volume 8 includes an article by Foster scholar Brian M. Kane on Foster's near-forgotten "Mounties" ad campaign paintings from the 1930s, along with a number of gorgeous reproductions.
“One of the greatest comic strips of all time and a peak in visual splendor and breath-taking adventure, the story of Prince Valiant’s 30+ year odyssey is getting a marvelous presentation in Fantagraphics’ series of books.” — Huffington Post
“Medieval swordplay and adventure have never been as glorious as in Foster’s Sunday-only comic strip. Prince Valiant is one of the best-drawn comics ever, and this new edition does ample justice to its achievement.” — Publishers Weekly
“This is the best showcase Foster’s epic creation has had since its original appearance more than 70 years ago.” —Booklist
“A witch named Horrit once prophesied that Val would never know contentment, but fans of the strip will find it here.” — Vanity Fair
“Foster’s meticulously detailed, painstakingly researched, vividly realistic, and often breathtaking illustration made him one of the most revered artists in the comic field.” — Library Journal