Halo Escalation #7 Review (SPOILERS)

Hmm, how can I say this in one word? Disappointing. Up until now, Escalation has had action and/or intrigue to it that I’ve enjoyed the other six issues. This one though…
Halo Escalation 7 cover

Let’s start with the story. With respect to those that have lost loved ones, a comic book really isn’t a good venue for having a story about that experience. Well, in my opinion anyway. When I buy a Halo comic, I expect action, adventure and intrigue. Be that fighting against the Covenant or spying on various faction, space battles, Spartans in action, etc.

This issue left me wanting my money back. The story of how Thorne comes to terms with the loss of his Grandmother at new Phoenix as a story??? Boring. AND, might I point out, we already know that Thorne had moved on afterwards. It’s seen in the very first scenes of Spartan Ops Episode One. From that very first cut-scene, Hoya mentions New Phoenix. Grant asks Thorne about having people there. Thorne acknowledges it, Grant apologizes, then Thorne says it’s alright and that he’ll get over it. It’s pretty clear that while he misses family and friends, he’s focused on being a Spartan.

This issue tears that all up and throws it out the window.

Now, let’s look at something else in the story that really bothered that crap out of me…

Jumping the Shark

For those that do not know what this term means, it’s reference is regarding and episode of the 70’s/80’s show, ‘Happy Days’. IN a specific episode, the people are in California and the ‘Fonz’ waterskis over a ramp and literally over a shark. Hence, jumping the shark. It loosely means, to doing anything to bring back your audience. Or if you look it up on the net, a definition given is:
a term to describe a moment when something that was once great has reached a point where it will now decline in quality and popularity.

In this issue of Escalation, Grant finds an action figure of Master Chief and asks Thorne about it. Okay, right there I was a little annoyed. Had it ended there, it wouldn’t have been so bad. However, Grant goes on to discuss whether they will have action figures of them. Not just Spartan IVs in general but actual Grant and Thorne figures. Really??? Come on folks. We already know the Halo has a cadre of toys related to it. Was it really necessary to bring that into a comic book? Was it meant as a bit of levity to Thorne’s visiting his home on Earth?

Lastly for the story, when Thorne finds the spot where his grandmother had been composed, he picks up the violin that she had been playing and starts playing it himself. Now, if had already been shown that as a kid he was learning the violin, so it’s not a surprise he knows how to play. But to then have him do it at the spot of his grandmothers composition? Okay, I get Darkhorse meant it to be a meaningful tribute. However, it’s really very cliché.

Beyond the story, there is the artwork. Thorne in this issue looks horrible. Not anything like the Thorne from Halo 4. Is this because the rights to use the actor’s face beyond Spartan Ops wasn’t secured? Who know, but really, the art in this book for Thorne was just plain bad. When you couple that with a somber story that doesn’t mean much of anything in the Halo universe at all, well, you get an issue as the one we got.

Again, I found this issue to be a waste of time and money. If I’m going to pay $4 for a comic book, then I want some really good art at the least and I want ACTION. This is about the UNSC/Oni/Spartans, Covenant, etc. It’s meant to be thrilling, adventurous and such. Not at all what issue 7 was.

I really don’t like to give bad marks on things, but when it’s blatantly apparent, well, I feel I need to give voice to my complaint.

Okay, so that over, have any of you read this issue? What did you think of the story? Like it or not and WHY? How about the art in it? I really do want to read your thoughts on this. I know my bud PensHalo has read it and I’m pretty sure he’s going to give a response to this.  Whether you agree with me or not doesn’t matter. It’s making your opinions known is more important to me than a disagreement.



This entry was posted in Comic Books and Graphic Novels by Sal. Bookmark the permalink.

About Sal

I’ve got tons of experience with Halo gaming and collecting. I feel I have something to offer to the greater Halo fan community. Posts along the way will be about tips and tricks in the games as well as collecting and many more Halo related things. I’ll also repost interesting articles from the official site, Halowaypoint.com, or from fellow Halo fan sites. As I continue this blog, I hope to help gamers who want advice on the games, as well as any collectors with regards to where to find collectibles as well as deals, coupons and so on. You can also follow me on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/#!/HaloFanForLife or Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/halofanforlife11. Welcome to my blog and I hope you’ll come back again and again. -Sal

3 thoughts on “Halo Escalation #7 Review (SPOILERS)

  1. hmm, i think i would of liked that. because as much as i like the pure action side of things, its always nice to know that hey, they are humans in a war. they feel the same way we do when were in a war. sure you need action. but you need drama with the action. halo is basically a Space Opera

  2. Well, when I first read Escalation #7 over lunch (it was the digital version on my phone) I thought it was an odd shift in the story arc considering how #6 ended. However, one thing I have always wanted to know is more of the backstory behind some of the characters, and Thorne is one of those. I enjoyed the story even though it seemed out of place. I have a soft spot for stories like this, even though they don’t fit well into a comic format.

    I do agree that the whole Master Chief statue scene was one that could of (and probably should have) been left out. Regarding the art, I think I agree more with what Sal has said. I grew up reading comics penned and inked by Joe Kubert and Robert Kanigher (two of the best there ever was, IMO). So the art in the series overall has left me desiring more. While you might not be able to be exactly what the actors appeared like in Halo 4/SpOPS, I do wish they could be a little closer. There are some other things that have made me raise an eyebrow at times, the changing height of Palmer vs. Lasky being one of them.

    All in all this was probably my least favorite comic to date, but as I was contemplating this reply I realized something about the Escalation series. In going over it it seems that the series is written to be a graphic novel first and then was divided up into 12 parts to be released one at a time. I sat down and read 1-7 straight through and they actually flowed together quite nicely, even with the odd break with #7.

    Read together, 1-6 fall into the category of “Exposition” and “Rising Action” with 7 being a break before the “Climax”. (Ok, so I remember the terms used in the dramatic structure of stories when I was taught it in High School) That 8-10 (at least) will be about Master Chief makes me think that the climax is coming up.

    I still enjoy this series and can’t wait to see what comes up the next three months.

Comments are closed.