Several issues ago, Peter Stancheck used his powers selfishly and violated Kris Hathaway. Now he’s reaching out to her for help after escaping Harada and learning the truth about the death of his closest friend. However, she wants something from him in return, since helping her family means going up against the very man that Peter just escaped from.
Each title that has been released from Valiant over the past few months stands on its own, and Harbinger is no different. Dysart has given it a much darker and sinister tone than the others, and our protagonist isn’t someone that you would initially root for. However, this is one of those issues that begins to turn that around, albeit very slowly. Much of this issue focuses on Kris and her family issues, and Dysart masterfully weaves these problems to intersect with Peter’s in a way that doesn’t feel forced at all. It’s more of a natural progression of both characters, and then you have Faith who is just the happiest superhero ever in contrast to her two angst ridden companions.
There is very solid artwork from Briones in this issue that moves the story along quite well. There is very little action involved, so Briones gets to take things a bit slower and show off some really good detail and character expression. The colors of Hannin put this over the top, making for a very good looking issue. Hopefully Briones will stay on for some time, as we’ve seen several different artists on this title already.
Now, this issue does begin the Rise of the Renegades story arc and is a pretty safe jumping on point for a new reader. I know there’s a lot of new choices on the shelves these days, but Harbinger is definitely one of the right ones!