Review: Armor Hunters #3 by Robert Venditti and Doug Braithwaite


Review: Armor Hunters #3

“Part Three: Trap”
Published by Valiant Entertainment
Written by Robert Venditti
Art by Doug Braithwaite
Coloured by Laura Martin

The Plot

This issue begins with M.E.R.O. being attacked by an acid spitting English talking space dragon. Bloodshot goes in to face it in order to give Capshaw, etc. time to evacuate in “The Love Boat.” Over in Nebraska, Aric is looking over the damage caused by the hounds and seeing how the Visigoths have been decimated. Livewire is controlling the Love Boat, which is an old Vine ship as they arrive to pick up Aric and company. Completely distraught over the loss of lives everywhere, Aric decides to give up the X-O armor. However, Capshaw has an alternate plan. Meanwhile over in Rome, Ninjak and the Eternal Warrior have just finished dispatching of more hounds. Neville then sends them “across the pond” to assist with the battle against the Armor Hunters. Above the Earth in Gin-Gr, the Armor Hunters are debating Primary’s decision to send Lilt to the ground as they have lost communications with him. Just then Capshaw communicates with them and informs them that they are surrendering the armor. They expect to find Aric, but are surprised to see that Capshaw had a different plan in mind altogether. The defenses of Gin-Gr are compromised and they end up on Earth. As it turns out, both sides are underestimating each other. It’s turning into all-out war as Aric watches on and has a decision to make.

The Breakdown

This issue flew by, but it was another really good read. I really enjoyed Livewire again in this issue and I want to reread the early issues of Harbinger. I admit that I didn’t see the potential in her character early on, which makes me want to revisit those issues. Capshaw was showing some actual feelings in this issue and that helped to strengthen her character for me. She’s been fairly one-dimensional more often than not and her reactions in this issue seemed more genuine. Also, I liked how she was able to formulate a plan of attack in spite of enduring a lot of emotional pain. I’m glad that the battle between Bloodshot and Lilt is contained to that title alone. We basically know the outcome, but the details will be shown in the Bloodshot series. It also shows how well-organized this event has been. I also enjoyed how Primary and the Armor Hunters are conflicted and how their actions seemed less justified in this issue. I am curious to see what the new status quo will be with Aric after this event is over. I also want to see how exactly the Armor Hunters are able to destroy the X-O armor because it’s been virtually unbeatable to this point and they have been able to take it down in other areas already. It also seems like Aric is starting to experience more growth once again. Rather than acting out of vengeance he is now carefully considering his own actions in order not to cause any more death. The Aric of old would’ve went to war despite the costs, which is what Gafti called him on a long time ago prior to Planet Death. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone band together next issue and have themselves a big ol’ slobberknocker of a fight. The art team was solid overall and did a good job of telling a solid story. Their consistency also helps this event feel more important. I was definitely not disappointed by this book this month!
As much as I really like a well-paced, four issue event…I’m hoping that the next issue will be a larger sized one. There’s a lot that’s going to happen and I don’t want anything to be cut short. Nonetheless I do have faith that the creative team will tell a good story regardless.

Buy It, Borrow It, Shelf Read It, or Ignore It?

Buy It. This is how events should be done. I’ve said this before, but past events from other companies have had me at the point of disliking them altogether. Armor Hunters benefits from good, solid planning and as a result does not feel slapped together. I hope that readers reward this title with good sales because it just simply deserves it and that they stop feeding some of the other mindless, poorly planned events. One of the things that I like most of this event so far is how the “Wow” moments with various characters have not felt contrived or like the creative team was trying to push them down our throats. I really appreciate the fact that Valiant allows their events to unfold and not just randomly decide to go “Hey, time for an event. What should we do that will have a bunch of wtf moments and don’t worry, you don’t have to concern yourself with continuity and with interrupting the flow of any other titles that you might be interested in including. You also have the freedom of having a couple of filler issues so don’t worry about pacing the book too much. Two things though, make sure that the threat is universe-threatening, like even more than the last one and that any game changers you make can be retconned later on.” Yeah, I’m definitely glad that Valiant doesn’t do that, buy this book.

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