In a double whammy of a press release on Marvel.com, the House of Ideas has announced a new co-writer for Valkyrie: Jane Foster, Torunn Grønbekk, as well as the return of artist CAFU to the series. In addition, CAFU has signed a Marvel E-X-X-XCLUSIVE contract, meaning that, like Chris Claremont, he will only do work for Marvel, but unlike Chris Claremont, Marvel actually plans to use him.
It all starts in Valkyrie #8, hitting stores in February. The issue hasn't been solicited yet, but Marvel did reveal some unlettered preview pages on their website:
Here's what Grønbekk had to say about joining the series:
For years, Jane Foster has been one of the most complex, compelling, and well-written characters in comics. It's not hard to see why she's one of the most cherished ones as well, or why she would have to be the one to take up the mantle of Valkyrie. The role flings her right back in the borderlands between the living and the dead, navigating through the mysteries of the worlds with the openness and courage only Jane can muster.
I've loved seeing what Al and Jason have done with the book so far. They've kept the Jane I know and love, and given her such a unique set of abilities and challenges. She's still learning what it means to be Valkyrie, and we'll keep exploring that in the issues to come. We'll see how the job as Valkyrie affects Jane, how Jane, in return, can add her unique experiences to Valkyrie, and how she stands in her new role when meeting old friends.
On a personal note, I'm endlessly excited to be working in this particular part of the Marvel Universe. I'm born and raised in Norway, and the myths and sagas of the old world were part of my daily life growing up. (I'm literally named after Thor. 'Torunn' means 'to love Thor.') I've read and loved every part of Jason's tremendous work on the Asgardian books over the past few years. I couldn't be happier to now be writing Jane — my favorite Thor! — and bring her to yet undiscovered parts of the Nine Realms. I can't wait to see where it takes us.
And here's what CAFU had to say about becoming Marvel EX-X-XCLUSIVE and about Valkyrie:
Working for Marvel has always been one of my lifelong dreams. More than 10 years ago, I had the chance to make it a reality, and since then, I've been chomping at the bit to have the chance again to draw these characters that I've adored since I was a kid. Signing this exclusivity is something VERY SPECIAL for me!
Jason, Torunn, and myself are preparing something REALLY BIG. Valkyrie will have to face the biggest and most terrifying threat she's faced until now. I can't wait for people to read it!
Look for Valkyrie: Jane Foster #8 to be solicited in Marvel's February solicitations this month.