Comic Book Review: Predator: Hunters #3
If you’re feeling burnt out on aliens stories, Predator: Hunters is the book that you need to take notice of if you’re looking for a good change of pace. This book is another in the franchise which offers the excitement of what happens when there are no victims and the humans are just as dangerous as the predators or xenomorphs. Reaching the halfway point in this miniseries surely this is when they turn things up a notch with arrival.
Predator: Hunters #3 is a call to action and where they fully pull you into this story. Mainly because saying these people are trained hunters of Predators or have experience with them is not enough. We invest in a story like this to see a little show and tell. They clearly have the armory to prove this, but it’s another thing entirely when they actually make contact with this Predator on the island. This issue started off right just by showing us the way thy hunt. At this point we know how a Predator hunts so the focus has to be put into showing how the humans return the favor.
Pacing matters a lot when again this is a miniseries. On issue three that is when you want to dial the speed up a bit so that there is enough that we can get out of an actual encounter. It took some time for first contact to be made, but they did not hold back when it was time for the Predator to make its presence known. The assault team encountering the Predator at night on the tropical island did feel like they were setting themselves up for trouble, though the challenge is unavoidable. That first encounter was without a doubt anti-climatic, but it was the reveal after which catches you off guard. They certainly had us looking at this mission one way and that made it very easy for us to be hit with a twist that shakes up everything. What you thought you just knew about this from intel you could pretty much toss right out the window.
The little bit of exploration of the island they are hunting on you could say consumed some time, but it was the proper engagement in the environment around them. Trying to work around these people who live there felt like a natural obstacle to create for them. You don’t simply charge in and threaten their wildlife and plant life. You gotta be smart about it which they were in every way that they stuck to their script as researchers. Which truthfully isn’t technically a lie to some extent.
Francisco Ruiz Velasco continues to knock it out of the park with this second issue. As we jumped into the hunt this was a good time to take notice of the way they approach hunting the hunter. Velasco did a solid job of capturing these people who even after their experiences still think they were in control. The human condition shines above anything else here and while it makes you cringe at the way they throw themselves into action, it was a good time to respond with a wake-up call to what they all really just signed themselves up for. The smiles, anxiousness, panic, all these things are what can doom them and it was smart that we could see these expressions and reactions rather than hiding them all behind masks. Probably the one time I won’t argue that people aren’t wearing masks when they should. The Predator didn’t strike enough fear in his attacks but I think this worked as a taste of what’s actually to come their way. Aside from this the cold colors and contrasting warm colors I continue to enjoy from Velasco. The blues meshed with greens in particular gave the forest around them the appearance of being set on a tropical island. He also captures one hell of a sunset in comparison to other artists out there.
The ten-to-one odds and machine guns favor the humans, but Predator: Hunters #3 flipped everything about this right on its head. This was a good taste of what we could expect from just first contact but it is the unknown that just may do this team in. I like that something as simple as what you don’t know can have such a big impact on the way this fight will end.