Comic Book Review: Halo: Rise of Atriox #4

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Halo: Rise of Atriox #3 was a big issue if you were looking for a reason to like Atriox as a centerpiece in the Halo Universe. He made a statement for what he wants to represent and those with the Banished who follow him. Even if you want to hate him as an enemy, you can’t argue with the honor he lives by which is something that was lost from those who followed the Covenant. Sometimes you can even say the UNSC slips up with some of their “heroes” missing the point of honor as well. Regardless, Atriox with every move just shows why he is not the Jiralhanae to mess with.

With this issue I found myself just a bit confused by what was going on at first. They say that Atriox and his Banished forces are seemingly interrupted while assaulting a UNSC forward base, but from the looks of it I couldn’t tell if that was actually the case. This base that we see them attacking looked more like a Covenant base than UNSC. I’ll take that as an error in description though. That aside, it was interesting to see Atriox taking bolder moves. Having established himself and his Banished as a legitimate force, these are things that he and his army are now capable of pulling off without being wiped out.

What made this assault interesting is that this is the first time since leaving the Covenant that Atriox and his Banished are seen going against Sanghelli forces. This whole thing began with the betrayal from a Prophet and an Elite, so it was strange seeing him pull this kind of move against an army of them. Nonetheless not something hard to wrap your mind around since the Banished isn’t an army or force made up of just Jiralhanae. I will say that they ruined the surprise from Atriox a bit by saying that his capture was supposed. Clearly Atriox isn’t the kind of guy to get captured so easily or without thinking ahead, but some of those details they can let you stumble upon on your own. The point of interest when you get to that moment is in what offer Atriox presents Shipmaster Let ‘Volir. His offer and how he revealed his other plans for ‘Volir, his ship, and its crew were the highlight of this issue. Great dialogue and even better execution of that scene.

Atriox continues to be one of the most developed characters in recent times if you ask me because he is more than a brute. This is a warrior who is sent time and time again into war to walk out alive and with more notches added to his body count. But the action isn’t the attraction, its his cunning and intelligence. Atriox is to be feared, but he is also respectable. You wouldn’t expect someone like him to handle diplomacy so well, but he does it flawlessly and without force. For even the brief time that we get to know Shipmaster Let ‘Volir, he gives you that impression that more leaders can be like Atriox if they took control of their fates.

I’m not going to lie that when I flipped open to that first page, I wasn’t too sure how I had felt about the artwork. There was delight off the bat when it came to the few issues before because the quality of work was impressive for this kind of book. Of course those few pages didn’t stop me from reading the rest of this issue and I found myself satisfied after that. Some things felt fully rendered, while other things felt like they were half-drawn when it came to structures and vehicles. That Covenant base at the start looked cool with that said. I don’t think we have seen one like that before, in the books at least. The same could be said for the characters though that mostly had to do with perspective. More effort was definitely put into drawing Atriox which is appreciated as the main character. His features are always distinctive when it comes to his face and the style of his gravity hammers in contrast to the others.

Halo: Rise of Atriox #4 was a solid chapter where Atriox proves once again that he is the capable leader worthy of the Covenant’s fear. This is how you flesh out a character without the labels of hero or villain. Here there are only individuals and groups who are fighting for the causes they have been led to believe in. Against the humans I still can’t see myself rooting for Atriox, but going up against the Covenant it is team Atriox all the way.

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Total Score
8.2