Valiant’s original teen superhero team is back in this November’s Harbinger: Renegades, but the kids have grown up a lot since parting ways. Faith has become a breakout star of the Valiant Universe, Torque has his own reality show, and the Renegades’ leader Peter has been spending time off-planet fighting his drug addiction. They pursued their own paths, and the world has gone to shit ever since. As the one member of the team with no powers, Kris Hathaway hasn’t had much to do beyond watch how everything is falling apart, and she’s tired of it. This preview of Harbinger: Renegades #1 begins with Kris reaching out to Peter, wherever he is, and asking him to come home, and she’s chosen the perfect time to reopen communication with her old friend.
Writer Rafer Roberts has described Harbinger: Renegades in interviews as “Jack Kirby’s Trainspotting,” and these preview pages give a very good idea of what he means by that. The scope of the story expands dramatically when the action shifts from Kris to Peter, and Roberts is taking a cosmic approach to Peter’s recovery as he shows him meditating in the ring of asteroids around Saturn. The writing in these pages has a very different tone compared to the silliness of Roberts’ excellent work on A&A: The Adventures Of Archer & Armstrong, and the visuals fully capture the script’s mix of spectacle and somber introspection.
Artist Darick Robertson is an industry veteran with a versatile art style that has been used for high-concept sci-fi (Transmetropolitan), gritty crime (Happy), and superhero satire (The Boys), and his understanding of all these different genres makes him a great fit for this title. Inker Richard Clark and colorist Diego Rodriguez have both worked with Robertson in the past, and these pages showcase the depth and dimension they bring to Robertson’s pencils, particularly the spread of Peter floating around Saturn in his psychic cocoon. This is an art team that can handle whatever wild ideas the script throws its way, and given the book’s hook, expect to see some mind-bending imagery when Harbinger: Renegades hits stands on November 16.