Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

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Oxmyx
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Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Oxmyx »

I've been watching what Harada does to the Visigoths that he fights. He just exploded their heads. A pretty effective and direct and quick solution. He also does something similar to Maniac in (Bloodshot and HARD Corps.)

Then, in the fourth chapter, Harada fights with Gilad Ninjak and Livewire.
Harada uses mind control (I assume?) to make Gilad pull out a pistol and aim at his own head. Here maybe I think Harada knew Gilad would survive that kind of wound. Cause he would, right? I think he knew (or suspected) that a head popped into a bloody wet mess would actually be a permanent death to the EW.

Would it, tho?

Is this a sign that Harada didn't actually want to kill EW just get him out of the fight?

What's the backstory on these two? It sounds like they HAD some sort of almost friendship at one point prior to Unity Vol 1. Maybe Gilad saved his life in some sort of bonding dangerous mission when Harada was a teen? Was this story ever told (in a TPB I haven't gotten to yet)?

I get why Harada didn't kill Livewire. They had a superficial father-daughter thing going on. He needed to process his hate for her. Plus, surprise in her case.

But what I DON'T get is what reason could he have for not killing Ninjak? Ripping him apart in a bloody mess? He does the Darth Vader choke hold in the air thing. But why? So he can do the supervillain monologue?

Obviously the real reason these characters aren't killed are because they are tentpole characters needed for the comics. But I like to suspend my nihilism in these cases.
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by geocarr »

Underlying homosexual subtext? :?

(Not that there's anything wrong with that...)
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Sunlight on Snow »

Killing off Ninjak 18 months into the relaunch, without even having written a single Ninjak book, would have been totally awesome.

You are referring to Unity #2 and #4, right?

Of course, they couldn't have killed off one of their major characters at this point. It was darn close anyway.

But I don't really see a contradiction here. Aric and his Visigoths are the major threat here. Unity believes that Aric taking Romania would lead to a war with Russia. Besides, it's the Visigoth who are invading Earth in an alien spaceship (Vine Colony Ship). Harada isn't the only one who's killing one of the Visigoths. Ninjak does, too. They do this while they are trying to take over control of the spaceship. Of course, the Visigoths attacking Unity is defending their spaceship and lives.

Then, Unity figures out that Harada either would let the entire ship drown or control it for his own purpose.

When it comes to the final conflict between Unity, I believe, Harada is fully aware of Gilad being the Eternal Warrior who cannot be killed. Letting Gilad pointing his gun at his own had is just a means of showing him that he certainly cannot kill Harada either. Then, Livewire's charging at Harada before he could let Ninjak choke himself to death, and eventually it's Livewire who's giving Harada a monologue about killing innocent people. If anything, the question is why doesn't Livewire remember her own words during HW2 when she kills even more innocent people?

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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Oxmyx »

Sunlight on Snow wrote:
Mon Jun 01, 2020 6:34:35 am
You are referring to Unity #2 and #4, right?
Yes.

And I agree that killing off Ninjak in a showdown with Harada would have been awesome, unforgettable, ballsy, unexpected, and would have cemented Valiant as a different breed of comic...both in terms of serious mature storytelling but also a publisher that isn't following the rules you expect them to.

It would actually harken back to the VH1 showdown between Rai and Mothergod.

I do see the contradiction where Ninjak is concerned. But also maybe EW.

Why didn't he kill Ninjak immediately? Aside from storytelling

Why didn't he explode EWs head? Would he have survived that? I'm doubtful.
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by geocarr »

My best attempt to logically justify Harada allowing Gilad to live would be that Harada telepathically realized the amount of history Gilad has lived through and believes that Gilad's historical and tactical knowledge might be useful to his plans somehow in the future. It's the only reason I can imagine Harada would have for allowing anyone he perceives to be an enemy in any given moment to live.

Another possibility might be if the Bleeding Monk persuaded him to spare Gilad because Gilad had some important part to play in the future that was connected to Harada's future plans.
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Sunlight on Snow »

I don't think the Bleeding Monk ever mentioned Gilad. I think you're missing the point that Harada actually wanted Gilad to shoot himself in the head. It was Ninjak's last second shuriken that prevented it. Whether or not it would have killed Gilad for good is irrelevant. However, this is not the Walking Dead.

Would it have hurt him? Yes. Would it have killed him? Certainly not!

Gilad had already been dead but when his brothers activated the Boon and started the Great Cataclysm, Mother Earth granted Gilad immortality in a way that he could always return from the Afterlife (Deadside). In fact he has to (return) because he knows he owes Mother Earth and the Geomancer his service.

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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by geocarr »

Sunlight on Snow wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 5:42:17 am
I don't think the Bleeding Monk ever mentioned Gilad. I think you're missing the point that Harada actually wanted Gilad to shoot himself in the head.
I'm not disagreeing with you. I was just trying to offer as plausible possibilities as I could think of to answer the question that is the title of this thread.

Given the extent of Harada's power set and his literal ability to telekinetically explode someone's head, any other action he takes to eliminate a perceived enemy would be driven either by theatrics or some other ulterior motive that he perceives to be logical at the time. Harada has never seemed the theatrical type to me.
Last edited by geocarr on Wed Jun 03, 2020 7:15:44 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by geocarr »

Double post
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Oxmyx »

Sunlight on Snow wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 5:42:17 am
...Whether or not it would have killed Gilad for good is irrelevant....

...Mother Earth granted Gilad immortality in a way that he could always return from the Afterlife (Deadside).
Whoa! That Deadside stuff is part of EW lore I've never heard before. What TPB is that in? So, Gilad has actually died a few times, sounds like? And then been resurrected each time?

Whether Harada planned to kill Gilad or merely get him out of the battle seems VERY relevant to me. Mostly because it hints at their unseen (? I think?) relationship and past and possibly future.

It sounds like Harada was certainly going to be at least aware that Gilad was functionally immortal. He'd know that through telepathy if nothing else. He'd know how well Gilad heals. I think he'd know that a bullet to the head wouldn't be a killshot but very effective at removing EW from the battle.
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Oxmyx »

geocarr wrote:
Tue Jun 02, 2020 2:41:18 pm
My best attempt to logically justify Harada allowing Gilad to live would be that Harada telepathically realized the amount of history Gilad has lived through and believes that Gilad's historical and tactical knowledge might be useful to his plans somehow in the future. It's the only reason I can imagine Harada would have for allowing anyone he perceives to be an enemy in any given moment to live.
Oooh this is impressive reasoning and I love it!

Have you thought about what part Gilad might have in Harada's plans? I had something really cool occur to me.

In VH1 a big part of Rai Zero was Harada's desperate quest for immortality or at least a way to continue living.

Maybe instead of Armstrong like VH1, Harada was planning to "study" EW?
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Oxmyx »

geocarr wrote:
Tue Jun 02, 2020 2:41:18 pm
My best attempt to logically justify Harada allowing Gilad to live ...
It sounds to me like you agree with me that Harada "with his skill set" could find a way to permanently kill EW, head explosions or something else.

I was trying to remember. Do you have good evidence that VEI EW can be permanently killed? It seems to me that VEI EW is rather more immortal than VH1 EW.

And Harada's headshot. You think that'd do it? I do, but that's a guess
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by geocarr »

Oxmyx wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 12:33:48 pm
Have you thought about what part Gilad might have in Harada's plans? I had something really cool occur to me.

In VH1 a big part of Rai Zero was Harada's desperate quest for immortality or at least a way to continue living.

Maybe instead of Armstrong like VH1, Harada was planning to "study" EW?
I like the idea of Harada trying to tap into Gilad's immortality and replicate it. There could be a story where Harada does capture Gilad and tortures him for months, eventually discovering the secret to Gilad's immortality only to realize it's impossible to replicate and use it for himself. Meanwhile, the other heroes work to discover who has Gilad, his location, and eventually the rescue which could either be a very climatic battle of the heroes vs. Harada and his allies OR the heroes could arrive shortly after Harada accepts he cannot replicate Gild's immortality and Harada basically hands Gilad over to the heroes while delivering some Joshua Dysart level dialogue about how he's not the bad guy they believe him to be and the means justify the ends to his vision of a peaceful and equal society.

I was thinking the relationship between Harada and Gilad almost like Darth Vader and Luke with Harada seeing all the advantages of persuading Gilad to join him and constantly trying to persuade him either through favors such as assisting Gilad in fighting the Immortal Enemy, Death Cult of Nergal, Sword of the Wild, etc.

OR Harada could coerce Gilad's assistance through kidnapping/threatening/torturing a Geomancer, Tama, Xaran, or another offspring of Gilad's or niece or nephew that could be introduced as a new character.

OR tempting Gilad by claiming to be able to release him from the curse of his immortality and never-ending responsibility to the Earth.

Just spit-ballin' here... :D
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by geocarr »

Oxmyx wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 1:00:57 pm
It sounds to me like you agree with me that Harada "with his skill set" could find a way to permanently kill EW, head explosions or something else.

I was trying to remember. Do you have good evidence that VEI EW can be permanently killed? It seems to me that VEI EW is rather more immortal than VH1 EW.

And Harada's headshot. You think that'd do it? I do, but that's a guess
I don't think Harada could permanently kill Gilad unless he could sever Gilad's connection to the Earth somehow which might make for an interesting premise worthy of exploration by someone smarter than me.

I'm not sure if this is right, but I seem to remember VH1 Gilad being more like the Highlander and never really dying but taking time to heal commensurate with the severity of his wounds.

If I understand the VEI Gilad, he dies and goes to Deadside where he kind of could choose to stay if he really dug his heels in, but he would never know peace and be physically, psychologically, and emotionally tortured until he eventually breaks and fights his way back to the land of the living to continue serving the will of the Earth and Geomancer which is also physically, psychologically, and emotionally tortuous in similar but at the same times different ways and arguably to a lesser degree. Gilad is truly a tortured soul in every sense of the word without any hope that he'll ever be able to off of his merry go round and ever have peace in life or death which would make an offer from Harada to break his connection with the Earth in exchange for yadda yadda yadda morally ambiguous evil act possibly very tempting for Gilad.
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Oxmyx »

geocarr wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 1:03:29 pm
Oxmyx wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 12:33:48 pm
Have you thought about what part Gilad might have in Harada's plans?
In VH1 a big part of Rai Zero was Harada's desperate quest for immortality or at least a way to continue living.
Maybe ... Harada was planning to "study" EW?
I like the idea of Harada trying to tap into Gilad's immortality and replicate it. There could be a story where

Just spit-ballin' here... :D
This story DEFINITELY should have been written
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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Sunlight on Snow »

Oxmyx wrote:
Thu Jun 04, 2020 2:36:38 pm
geocarr wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 1:03:29 pm
Oxmyx wrote:
Wed Jun 03, 2020 12:33:48 pm
Have you thought about what part Gilad might have in Harada's plans?
In VH1 a big part of Rai Zero was Harada's desperate quest for immortality or at least a way to continue living.
Maybe ... Harada was planning to "study" EW?
I like the idea of Harada trying to tap into Gilad's immortality and replicate it. There could be a story where

Just spit-ballin' here... :D
This story DEFINITELY should have been written
LOL!

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Re: Why didn't Harada pop Gilad's head in Unity Vol 1 (VEI)?

Post by Nameless7 »

When I read this, it felt natural to me because it fit the persona that Harada is. If Harada were some murdering psycho then he would pop everyone's head off that looked at him wrong.

But Harada sees himself as the ultimate ruler, he sees himself as a king with a firm hand. He will kill when he must in order to discipline the 'peasants'. But a king does not kill another king. It would be beneath his character to do that. It would be far more rewarding to make this 'lesser' kings acknowledge and accept his ruling over them.

Logically from a third person view you are right. it would be like: "hey who is that?" Harada - Pop, pop, pop. "I win k? bye". That's simply not him tho.


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