X-O Manowar #27 continues the tale of the Armor Hunters beginnings, this time taking them through their training and on to their first mission. Reebo is still an arrogant hotshot, Malgm is still young and handsome, and everyone else is in far better shape than they are by the time they reach Earth.
Venditti gives the young Reebo and Malgm an odd almost-innocents: As bounty hunters, they are innocents compared to the fighters they meet on the training ground and compared to the many fighters who know they are going to die trying to destroy the Armors. This is also the first time the young Gin-gr and Quartz make their appearance and something of their backstory is given.
As much as I adore Valiant’s ability to tell a crossover where each title still stands alone, this is one case where a little overlap would help. The Armor Hunters as shown in the other titles are bombarding Earth, and were shown earlier sterilizing an entire planet to remove contamination. There are no indications that any of them has second thoughts about their work or will be dissuaded by anything short of death. That being the case, it is difficult to invest much in their development here. There is a certain intellectual pleasure in knowing where they came from, and it is good to know why they are so determined, but their future development seems limited.
Bernard is again reveling in drawing multiple alien species. There are blue jellyfish-types, vaguely avian sorts, a couple of different designs featuring tentacles and an unusual number of eyes, and some lizard types. Various characters make their entrances–the Armor Hunters commander has a magnificent one. Reber has given these new aliens bright colors—green, red, blue, green and red, shades of green, and gold show in the hunters’ first gathering. The art here is strong.
So far, Aric’s tale has been in the Armor Hunters title, and the Armor Hunters’ story has been in X-O Manowar. Both are worth reading, but it helps to know what to expect.
Writer: Robert Venditti
Penciller: Diego Bernard
Inker: Alisson Rodrigues
Colorist: Brian Reber
Letters: Dave Sharpe
Cover Artist: Miguel Sepulveda, Diego Bernard