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Posted September 29, 2014
Bloodshot: Harbinger Wars is the other series (along with Harbinger) to tie in to the Harbinger Wars story arc (including the 4-issue mini series Harbinger Wars). In this book, we see how PRS has been working against Harada Corporation and Bloodhot is their “secret weapon” against him. However, Harada and the Harbingers have other ideas. Bloodshot is trying to rescue a number of children he “released” from PRS, but Harada wants to get his hands on them as well. Of course, you have to have obligatory fights between people who are ostensibly on the same side (against Harada) – what comic book would go against that trope?
The action continues at the same pace as the first two books, but it seems like there isn’t really any development of the Bloodshot character himself. I can understand that being on the run doesn’t allow one to fill out a Facebook profile, but I would still have liked to see more development about Bloodshot himself, even at the expense of some of the action.
The art is still enjoyable, but for some reason it gave me the impression of being somewhat rushed in these issues. As with the Harbinger TPB #3, you don’t need ot read the other stories to follow the Harbinger Wars here, although doing so does present a big picture view of what is going on.
Posted January 27, 2014
This book wraps up the first major plotline of Bloodshot, and is an excellent read from start to end.
Full-on action, showcasing psiot powers, Bloodshot's military skill and mercenary tactics, meaning this book is full of exciting set pieces as Bloodshot faces off against hired mercenaries, Project Rising Spirit troops, the Harbinger Renegades, and Toyo Harada and his Eggbreakers. The action is truly brutal, yet is only as graphic as it needs to be: the violence is heavy, but believable. There aren't gallons and gallons of blood just for cheap effect, but given Bloodshot's healing abilities, the damage sustained is portrayed in a manner applicable to his situation. In my opinion, this particular book *IS* heavy on violence and gore, but never in a manner that's over-the-top and ridiculous.
Action and graphics aside, the plot itself is highly exciting, as Bloodshot does his very best to protect the psiot children that have fallen into his charge, with the aid of a paramedic that's fallen waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay over her head. The plot is well paced as Bloodshot and his group continue their escape from the PRS base where the kids were held captive, and set course for Las Vegas in order to reunite with the other half of the psiot breakouts. The characters are well written and they all have distinct and individual personalities and feelings that maintain a human element in this book.
This I believe is the key factor that prevents Bloodshot from becoming a ridiculous "Rambo-'em-up", where all you get is a mindless display of action with nothing else much to flesh it out. Each of the characters have clearly defined attitudes, motives and feelings that in the end contribute to steering Bloodshot and his group towards making the choices that they do. One thing worth noting is that because of this, this may not be the best book to start reading the series with. I'd recommend at least reading the previous book to familiarise with Bloodshot (and the psiot kids) and their situation and personalities. This book really is a direct follow-on from the previous book, so people trying to read this book without having read AT LEAST the previous book might not have much of a clue. Sure, it's an exciting book that'll certainly make an impression, but reading the previous book will most certainly make a more enjoyable read of this one.
Overall, a VERY entertaining read. Bloodshot has impressed me immensely since its first issue and I really can't recommend it enough. Action packed and full of believable characters, and it's actually a surprisingly deep comic once you pick it up for a second time and start actually *thinking* about what's going on.