Monday, February 4, 2013

New Release Reviews for Valiant Entertainment, for 4 February, 2013

We're starting to catch up, here, at New Release Reviews. These issues are from 23 January, 2013. The small volume of titles often means they get lost in the mix. Sorry about that to Valiant, the creative teams, and any fans reading this. We're trying to be better about this.

We should have this weeks done for Wednesday. Probably. As always … titles are scored on a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being the very best possible. We take the time to read these books so your time isn't wasted.

Harbinger - Issue 8

This issue continues to search for more Harbingers for Peter's team. Well, honestly, it's more like Kris' team as he's a moron and she's really smart.  There may be more to that whinny telepath but it doesn't seem likely. He's not fully present, and it makes it hard to see the hero in him. Perhaps he really is Harada's mirror. Speaking of that, Harada's three pages could have been covered in two panels with a phone call.

The new character is intriguing, in an Incredible Hulk kind of way. It gives the reader the sense that he'll be very enthusiastic but probably a little bit of a wild-card. The dialogue is brutal, though. The creative team is hammering the reader over the head that he's a country-pumpkin. Torque's little fantasy world is odd, but it seems to work for the character.

The issue has an extremely dramatic cover, that continues to carry a story forward across covers. The artwork is sort of great and maybe sort of not so great. The interior artwork is alright. The colors are a bit understated. Overall the skill of the art team is OK but it certainly move the story forward.

Score: 8 out of 10

XO Manowar - Issue 9

A great deal of props must continues to be given to the the tight editorial team for keeping things moving forward and slowly bringing all the characters of this universe together. Even if they're not all on the same side. Harbinger and Bloodshot have naturally been moving in the same direction and the new arc approaching should bring the whole universe together.

An alien invasion will have that affect on people. No matter how silly and goofy it's called. It's difficult to write PLANET DEATH without giggling. It's very goody like some Saturday afternoon crappy horror film on UHF channels.

The issue's story is all over the place. Aric, the protagonist, doesn't talk so much as he tends to shout and punch more. Individual segments are given way more space than they need and more story could have been included. Still, it's fairly entertaining even though there is a profound lack of scale presented and very much missing. The torture stuff was overly disturbing.

The cover is alright, even if it has the PLANET DEATH stuff right there. It's got style and design, even if the skill is a bit off. The interior is very similar and it has some extremely rich and vibrant coloring going on.

Score: 7 out of 10