Saturday, January 25, 2014

Smallville: Harbinger #4 Review

Written by: Bryan Q. Miller
Art by: Daniel HDR
Cover Price: $0.99
Release Date: January 25, 2014

Surprise, Esirprus

I have really become a fan of the DC digital titles.  Smallville, in particular, has become a favorite of mine and the mini series concept has really helped.  It has allowed Bryan Q. Miller to explore other parts of the DCU while still existing in the Smallville Universe.  What makes it work so well is that Miller does make it fit into his existing world and overall story line.

Smallville: Harbinger has been a great mini and on a personal note, has been a bit of an introduction to DC's darker characters.  See, I have to admit that I don't have a huge history with Constantine or Zatanna.  My partner here at Weird Science reviews Constantine and Justice League Dark, so my exposure has been limited.  So, I must thank Bryan Q. Miller for the crash course in these two characters and I don't expect a thank you, because the pleasure has really been mine.

Smallville: Harbinger #4 wraps up the mini series in such a great way.  Miller shows why people love Constantine.  He is a selfish S.O.B. who ends up being the good guy when all is said and done.  I don't even think he expects it, but it happens anyway.  However, Zatanna ends up being the shinning star of the series, for me at least.  She is strong, brave and is willing to sacrifice (pun intended) everything to save a girl who appears to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.  We learn at the end this is not entirely true.

In a surprise cameo, Jay Garrick and the Teen Titans pay a visit to welcome this girl into their ranks.  It is such a great twist and anyone who loves the Titans will have a huge smile on their face.  I hope this means we will be seeing more of the Titans, hopefully in a full new miniseries.

I usually stress in my reviews to go out and buy the digital copy and not wait for the collected edition, but this one is a slight exception.  I still think you should get the digital right away, but I think this story in particular is going to read so well collected.  So just go buy both.  Easy peasy.

Daniel HDR continues art duties and everything looks great.  I don't want to get on a soapbox again, but artists such as Daniel HDR, Iban Coello, Bruno Redondo, Cat Staggs and Thony Silas are making these digital titles look so good.  I have to admit that when I first started reading and reviewing the digital stuff, I looked at the art duties as kind of a "minor leagues" where DC tested out unproven artists.  I'm glad to say that either I'm wrong or DC found a bumper crop of rookies ready to make the jump to the Show.

Bits and Pieces:

Smallville: Harbinger #4 wraps up the mini series in such a satisfying way.  Bryan Q. Miller gives us a conclusion to the arc, but also the promise of these characters coming back later, which is great.  We also get a great cameo and a huge (HUGE) twist reveal that will have Teen Titans fans so happy.  Highly Recommended.


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