Harbinger Renegade #0

Writer: Rafer Roberts
Artist: Juan José Ryp
Colourist: Andrew Dalhouse
Letterer: Simon Bowland
Publisher: Valiant

A review by Josh Rose

The road to Harbinger Wars 2 continues with Harbinger Renegade #0. The H.A.R.D. Corps, a paramilitary group with the technology to gain various powers, is hunting a psiot (Valiant’s version of Mutants) with the ability to predict the future. Alexander Solomon was an advisor to a major villain in the Valiant Universe, responsible for multiple psiot murders, and reportedly working with the Chinese government to develop a psiot weapons program. The H.A.R.D. Corps believe they finally have their prey, but as you would expect from seemingly straightforeward missions, things go awry.

Rafer Roberts is setting the stage for the next Valiant event: Harbinger Wars 2. Roberts leaves you asking lots of questions about this issue: Who is OMEN, what’s with all the monks, and what exactly is Alexander Solomon’s motivation for causing so much mayhem? This is a jumping on point so you’re supposed to come back for more, but you do need some background information on the Harbinger series. So, to truly appreciate this issue, I would suggest doing some quick research on the first volume of Harbinger.

Juan José Ryp has a knack for drawing really weird and creepy things. I love his designs for the monks that H.A.R.D. Corps encounter on their mission. They look like simple, bald guys in robes until you see their faces: no ears, missing eyes, and their mouths glow like they’re about to explode.

Andrew Dalhouse is responsible for the brilliant colours. He uses a wide colour pallet as the H.A.R.D. Corps go from dense jungle, to ambient temples and a dark dungeon. The best part of his colours are the red overtones of death resulting in a mission gone wrong, and the glowing yellow eyes juxtaposed against a dark blue background–all of which give you an incredible sense of dread.

The Verdict: Check it out.

Harbinger Renegade #0 is a fun story with tons of action, but I don’t feel like it’s crucial to buy unless you’re a purist who needs everything leading up to Harbinger Wars 2. This book is a stage setter. Its necessary for Valiant to get this out to avoid leaving plot holes in the upcoming event, but it is not essential to a reader simply looking for a good story. 

Josh Rose
Basically a hobbit, Josh is always enjoying food and drink, and going on unexpected adventures. Beware if you see him without a cup of coffee: caffeination deprivation makes this boy go loco.

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