REVIEW: ‘Hawkman,’ Issue #22

Reading Time: 3 minutes

hawkman #22

Hawkman #22 is written by Robert Venditti and illustrated by Fernando Pasarin. Oclair Albert and Wade Von Grawbadger provide are inkers for this series, Jeromy Cox is the colorist and Rob Leigh is letterer. Sky Tyrant holds hostage the body of Hawkman thanks to the Batman Who Laughs. Fortunately, help has arrived.

Heroes to the rescue. Hawkwoman, the Atom, and Adam Strange are those heroes, and they have the nefarious Key the Sky Tyrant sought. The last issue, they also got it and the Sky Tyrant in custody. Now they need to unravel the mystery of the Key and how to separate the Tyrant from Carter. None of these goals are meager. Adam Strange is combing through the Black Journal to learn about the Key. The Key has the power to destroy worlds. The Sky Tyrant wants it solely to destroy and remain immortal. The Atom cannot yet find a cure for the virus the Batman Who Laughs used to transform Carter into his most vile past life. This team does not need another setback.

But it does receive an unexpected revelation. The Key is more than a destroyer. At least, for Hawkwoman it is, and it very neatly ties back to the first issue. Hawkwoman is made the focus of the issue and it does not disappoint. This reveal creates another juxtaposition between heroes and villains and intensifies the tug of war Carter has against the Tyrant for literal self-control. Sky Tyrant keeps playing the game and upping the stakes, showing he is more than just a petty killer. He is a sly manipulator as well. This back and forth keeps the tale vibrant.

By this point, several issues into a hero going rogue, the story would have stagnated. Either the new villain must grow darker and make the hero irredeemable, or suddenly be fixed, and then all is instantly well. In Hawkman, not only has this storyline not degenerated into more-of-the-same, but has injected new elements into each character, expanded the Hawkman universe, and made the Hawks much more complex characters than they ever were in their varied versions. Dialogue reveals new facets of the history and personality of each character that are little gems for the discerning reader. The writer is doing an amazing job with these characters.

hawkman #22

Venditti crafts a story for the long haul and it shows each and every issue. He possesses an eye for details and clarity in writing. Readers are treated to a Hawkman who is and was both hero and villain. Even when he is not in control, Carter is a warrior who finds a way to fight back. Hawkwoman is no different, and she is written by Venditti in this series to be every bit equal to her other half. This pits the three-way war between Hawkman/Sky Tyrant/Hawkwoman as a battle of equals, constantly gaining and losing ground. It is a nice change of pace from other superhero comics.

Read another comic and hero/villain conflict comes at the story’s end and often ends in a splashy battle with graphic art but little complexity in the plot. Hawkman offers a continuance of the plot laid out in issue #1 that has yet to slow down, layering it with the bleak ‘Year of the Villain’ arc and giving Hawk fans old and new fresh takes on established characters. The art is as innovative as the storytelling. Pasarin and the company truly bring Venditti’s plot to life.

Pasarin graces every panel in gorgeous artwork. He delivers in every visual aspect. The level of detail, motion and body shapes is a lesson in great illustration. Hawkwoman is the best I’ve seen of a female superhero in comics in some time. This is especially true in a variety of expressions and body language. She carries herself like a warrior. Great inking, coloring, and letters compliment that art. Albert and Von Grawbadger relax the inkwork and allow the illustration to stand out. The colors stand out as well in this series, thanks to the attentive eye of Cox, and the disturbing lettering of the Tyrant’s speech by Leigh remains effectively creepy. They all contribute to make Hawkman an amazing comic book.

Hawkman #22 is top-notch and deserves more fans. DC needs to advertise this book a lot more. It is hands down one of the finest stories the company is putting out. Increase sales by letting more fans know about it. This is a book well worth reading.

Hawkman #22 is available wherever comic books are sold, and from our Comixology affiliate link.

'Hawkman', Issue #22
  • Rating
5

TL;DR

Hawkman is top-notch and deserves more fans. DC needs to advertise this book a lot more. It is hands down one of the finest stories the company is putting out.