Comic Vine Review

8 Comments

Bloodshot and H.A.R.D.CORPS #15 - The H.A.R.D. Way, Part 2 Review

4

The H.A.R.D. Corps have recovered Bloodshot, but can they escape from Toyo Harada?

The Good

Co-writers Christos Gage and Joshua Dysart took over the title with #14, and, seeing as it's a whole new direction for the book, they made the understandable decision to spend that issue introducing us to the cast of characters and provide the basic building blocks for the greater picture. It was definitely well-written and a more than serviceable meet and greet for new readers, but for many, Bloodshot's lackluster amount of panel space was absolutely noticed.

This time around, Bloodshot gets just as much focus as the H.A.R.D. Corps (if not more) and, to no one's surprise, it's still written exceptionally well. Seriously, it's not everyday a book can make me laugh like a total fool and then make my jaw smack the floor just a second later. The two writers are able to juggle everything that's going on with commendable talent -- and there's most certainly a fair amount of plot potential in here. The cast is diverse and no one is getting left behind when it comes to development and attention. And, while there's still an excellent focus on the unique individuals and their own agendas, there's also an astonishing amount of glorious action and plot developments, too. It's a massively entertaining and enthralling ride from the opening scene and just doesn't let up.

Oh, and I don't know about you, but I can't wait to see Mak in action. Enhanced reflexes and unparalleled skill? Man, you can't give someone an introduction like that and not have them in some kind of epic fight down the road. I'm seriously stoked to see how she'll be utilized. Fingers crossed she throws down with Bloodshot!

The Bad

Overall, I am a fan of Emanuela Lupacchino, Guillermo Ortego and Brian Reber's visuals (the brief skirmish between the two protagonists looked particularly cool and impactful), but occasionally characters can come off as a bit stiff. Additionally, sometimes -- although, by no means often -- they seem unnaturally smooth, which is a bit of a jarring contrast to the book's tone.

The remark after Maniac's death gave me a good laugh, but I wish it came a panel or two later, allowing the moment to really sink in instead of providing an immediate tonal shift.

I'm also left a tad confused on Bloodshot's current status. He needs the nutrient baths every now and then (also, why didn't he at least try to eat the bar in the beginning? Couldn't hurt, right?), but to what degree is this actually limiting his powers? We saw he can still take bullets just fine and use the nanites to take over technology (which was quite awesome), but I'm left unclear on his limitations. Hopefully that receives a little more elaboration in the next issue.

The Verdict

BLOODSHOT has always been a book I've enjoyed a good deal, but as each Valiant title has had time to grow, it fell behind quality stuff like X-O MANOWAR and HARBINGER. However, with just two issues, co-writers Christos Gage and Joshua Dysart are beginning to change that and have put Bloodshot on a terrific new direction.

While their first issue introduced us to everyone, this chapter picks up the speed big time and it's incredibly engrossing the entire time. Not for a second did my interest even remotely fade and the creative team has done a superb job leaving us on a note that makes me beyond anxious to read the next issue. Relatively minor gripes aside, this is a really good issue and I can't recommend enough to anyone and everyone who's searching for an action title.

8 Comments
Posted by Cap10nate

Great issue. I am looking forward to the dynamic between Bloodshot and the team. As you said, I felt that this title had fallen a little behind in quality but the past two months has put it right up there with Harbinger and X-O at the top of my pile.

Edited by k4tzm4n

Great issue. I am looking forward to the dynamic between Bloodshot and the team. As you said, I felt that this title had fallen a little behind in quality but the past two months has put it right up there with Harbinger and X-O at the top of my pile.

Are you also checking out Eternal Warrior?

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Posted by Cap10nate

@k4tzm4n said:

@cap10nate said:

Great issue. I am looking forward to the dynamic between Bloodshot and the team. As you said, I felt that this title had fallen a little behind in quality but the past two months has put it right up there with Harbinger and X-O at the top of my pile.

Are you also checking out Eternal Warrior?

Yes I am. I am pulling all the Valiant titles right now (might drop Shadowman if the new creative team doesn't up the quality). I really enjoy it and would bet that it will be at the top of my list shortly, but I don't want to rate it until at least after the first arc. I am really encouraged by the quality that Pak and Hairsine are producing on the first two issues though. The highlight for me though has been Clayton Crain's covers and the flashback interiors that he has drawn. They have been phenomenal.

Posted by k4tzm4n

@cap10nate: Totally understandable and yes, the flashback scene was stunning.

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Posted by AllStarSuperman

I called my store to hold this for me, if i like it as much as 14 then its definetly going on my pull

Posted by CaptainHoopla

Good issue. I do hope they allow some of the characters to develop and they are not all here today and gone tomorrow. Hard Corps, meet Mr. Harada.

Posted by k4tzm4n

Good issue. I do hope they allow some of the characters to develop and they are not all here today and gone tomorrow. Hard Corps, meet Mr. Harada.

Yeah, I'm really hoping the new trio is around for a decent amount of time. I was surprise how quickly one of Harada's men was removed from the picture, though.

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Posted by AllStarSuperman

@k4tzm4n said:

@captainhoopla said:

Good issue. I do hope they allow some of the characters to develop and they are not all here today and gone tomorrow. Hard Corps, meet Mr. Harada.

Yeah, I'm really hoping the new trio is around for a decent amount of time. I was surprise how quickly one of Harada's men was removed from the picture, though.

well, he has a whole school.....

This issue was really good, I just got done with it. definitely going on my pull.