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Harbinger Volume 4: Perfect Day Paperback – 20 Feb 2014

4.7 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Valiant Entertainment, LLC; 01 edition (20 Feb. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1939346150
  • ISBN-13: 978-1939346155
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 1.3 x 25.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 431,455 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.7 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback
Where we left off: Toyo Harada has won the Harbinger Wars, and taken the escaped psiots of Generation Zero into his custody. The Renegades, beaten and bloodied after their encounter with Bloodshot, barely escaped from Las Vegas.

What follows in Vol. 4 is a total mind job as to the true nature of the Renegades current situation. Joshua Dysart continues his crafting of the Harbinger epic by first presenting us with what we think is real, then taking us deep into what can’t be possibly real, and then ultimately revealing the truth of the Renegades situation.

All the while, we are given fascinating glimpses deeper into the world of Toyo Harada (as well as glimpses into other areas of the Valiant Universe where Harada is dipping his toe), and gain further understanding into just how tightly regimented this man runs his life. When things spin out of control for him, it gets very bad indeed. It is fascinating to see that the pinnacle of success this man has achieved has been built on a very fragile house of cards. Now that other powerful beings like the Renegades, Gen Zero, Bloodshot… heck, even X-O Manowar and Unity are operating in his world, the cracks are starting to show. Harada is beginning to slip.

If I had one complaint, it would be the art in some of the issues. It might just be an “eye of the beholder” type of thing, but at times the style is just too sloppy for my tastes. Thank goodness Clayton Henry is featured in one of the issues. Very much prefer his clean style, and would rather see more art like his in comics.

This volume represents necessary reading in the ongoing Harbinger story, and sets up many arcs to be resolved. After this, the Renegades stop running…
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Format: Paperback
Harbinger Vol. 4 picks up on the aftermath and consequences of Harbinger Wars, where we see if anyone can truly claim total victory and we learn the stuff that dreams are truly made of.

Josh Dysart continues to excel with this title. Just when you think his characterization of the Renegades can’t get more in-depth, he takes it to another level. Presenting a near-perfect scenario of events, Dysart leaves the reader guessing on the true nature of things till near the end. Along the way, we see new details of the Renegades’ lives and relationships. Two moments stand out as being especially noteworthy, one for its’ surprising tenderness, the other for its’ shocking brutality.

While Peter and his group struggle with perfection, Dysart shows that not is all perfect for Harada either. While he may have gained the most from the aftermath of HW, it’s all being held together with pins and needles. Will it take much to send it all crashing down? And how would Harada act if and when it does?

The true beauty of this title is the seamless flow of building this complex yet utterly enjoyable story. It is literally David vs. Goliath, Peter vs. Harada. The influence and power of Harada seems almost insurmountable yet the ways that Peter is able to steal victory away is awesome. The Battle of Las Vegas may be over, but the war is far from being done.

If you haven’t checked out one of the best comics on the racks today, do yourself a favor and do so. You won’t regret it.
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Format: Paperback
How to hold a tiger by the tail, this is the question that Toyo Harada must find an answer to if he ever wishes to be able to contain Peter Stanchek. In this fourth volume of Harbinger: Perfect Day, issues #15-19, Peter and the Renegades have left the events of Harbinger Wars and Las Vegas behind. Time for some R & R in Los Angeles for Faith, Kris, Peter, Torque and Flamingo, and fun is to be had until the unusual starts to become the absurd and the absurd becomes downright crazy.

Kris, Faith and the other Renegades slowly realise that they feel they are becoming lost in a dream that they cannot escape from, which is just as trippy for the reader to fathom as well. Meanwhile Harada has his own problems in trying to take on too much simultaneously whilst obviously drained from his Las Vegas encounter during the Harbinger Wars. This may be alright had Harada slept during the past 40 days, for he is well overdue for at least a twenty-four hour shutdown where he usually would enter a psionic-suppression vault and safely release a mind squall, to do so outside would severely damage the minds of all in a close proximity, and unfortunately Harada is past breaking point.

Joshua Dysart delivers another outstanding chapter in the developing conflict between Harada and the Renegades plus new allies (yes allies-plural). Speaking of which Animalia/Monica Jim's Roadrunner Coyote cliff fall was quite funny. The various mindscapes we encounter with the Renegades are fun and it is interesting to try to notice each hint of truth that particular characters pick up on and other things they share during their versions of this mental landscape. It does tend to drag on a bit toward the latter part of the story though.
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Format: Paperback
Harbinger Vol 4: Perfect Day collection fell a little short in my opinion. It picks up after Harada won the Harbinger wars (oops, hope you read the previous issues!), and it starts off seeming like a number of unrelated, one-shot stories about each character, but something isn’t quite right. Of course, eventually the team figures out the problems, and of course, it is tied to Harada. When reading these, the story lines just didn’t seem to flow as well for me. I can’t really explain why, and the story certainly made sense in the larger context, but I just didn’t enjoy this arc as much are previous arcs.

As always, Dysart expertly weaves a story line, letting it slowly unwind a the reader follows along. The art I strong as always (I find Harbinger to be one of the more consistent books in terms of artwork). And at the end of this, I was eagerly awaiting the next story arc, so I can’t really point to anything “bad” in this arc, but all together it almost had more of a placeholder feel, without really advancing the overall storyline to much (although I will say that some interesting things happened to Faith and Kris in this arc).

As a starting point for new reading, I don’t recommend this, because you end up being thrown into the middle of a storyline that may be a little convoluted. I suggest that you look instead to the third TPB, which includes some backstory, and then pick up this TPB afterwards.
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