Written by: Joshua Dysart
Art by: Clayton Henry
Published by: Valiant Entertainment
Reviewed by: Ryan “Irish Rican” McLelland
If you love to rally behind Peter Stanchek and his Renegades then this issue of Harbinger is certainly not for you. Coming off the Harbinger Wars storyline we meet up with Pete, Faith, Torque, Charlene, and Kris at their weakest. As we start turn the pages we find the group very beaten down, right up until Toyo Harada walks into the panel. The Renegades are at their weakest while Harada is at his strongest. Unfortunately for all of us Harada easily takes the group prisoner.
Harada, quite simply, has won.
Another prisoner acquired is a little girl name Monica Jim or as she’s known by the Project Rising Spirit crowd as Animalia. She has quite a unique power which is the ability to morph into the cartoon characters she’s grown up watching. Even as she’s taken prisoner by Harada, put into a Matrixesque sleeping booth that places you into a virtual reality world, Animalia’s powers continue to work. She’s dreaming she’s “the coyote” chasing the fast “birdie” while her creations are killing her captors in the outside world. Not a little girl you want to mess with.
Harbinger #17 continues the powerful and epic story that continues to astound me. It’s a Harada triumphant issue for sure, but one where you see that Harada might be a bit tired from chasing after Peter and his gang. We see the Renegades are down at their lowest but we can only expect an epic getaway from the Harbinger forces. Or at least one can certainly hope.
This series is quite simply a stunning achievement, a love letter to comic book fans who love the genre. Dysart’s writing seemingly gets better and better with each passing issue while Clayton Henry’s art is simply outstanding.
While this issue might not be the most action packed book you’ve read, the fallout from the previous storyline plays out in ways you did not expect. You expect our gang to always come out on top. Here they don’t. Both groups are at war with each other and it’s heartbreaking to see the group we rally behind being the ones who are force-fed into this virtual reality world. A reckoning is hopefully coming for Peter Stanchek – one we’ll all look forward to seeing.
If you are not a fan of Harbinger it is simply because you aren’t picking it up. Once you pick it up you won’t be able to put it down.
Tags: Clayton Henry, Harbinger, Joshua Dysart, Reviews, Valiant