Category Archives: Hawkeye

Mini-Opinions – Friday Edition

Okay guys, before I get too far into thoughts today, I have a question to ask everyone – Considering I only have three posts that are done every week (the two Mini-Opinions and the Weekly Summary), is this getting tired and boring? I feel like I should come up with something else to do that might be more interesting, but I’m not entirely sure what to do just yet. I will have to think on it…

Swamp Thing #0

So I will be completely honest here – I was not expecting to like this issue much. I mean, I know I was reading it for class, but I didn’t think it would be anything I was all that interested in. But when we got a little further into the mythos of this series, the different teams and their conflict, I was intrigued. It seemed like an interesting premise. I actually am debating picking up a TPB for this, just to see if the series is as interesting. I shall have to think about that…

Final Opinion: Solid

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Mini-Opinions – Friday Edition

I’m going to be really harsh on series this week, guys, because I’m working on figuring out just what series I want to keep reading, and which ones I am not interested in continuing. You’re going to see a lot of drops in this post and on Monday’s post as I figure out just what series I want to keep reading.

Superman: Birthright

I really enjoyed this story, although I don’t know a whole lot about the title character. I’ve never read a Superman story before. I have seen a movie here and there (not quite sure which ones…) and I saw the odd episode of Smallville, but that’s all the exposure I’ve ever had to the Man of Steel. Like with every other, this got bonus points just for being an origin story (because I LOVE origin stories!), but it was also told really well. I feel like the storytelling was pretty spot on, and pretty in line with a basic storyline concept that I’ve been brought up with: You start off with how life typically is (i.e. Clark trying to hide who he is but can’t stop himself from trying to help people at the very beginning), then one day something changes (i.e. he decides to stop trying to hide who he is). Because of that, these things happen (moves to Metropolis, gets a job at Daily Planet, meets Lois and Lex) which cause something else to happen (Lex attacking Superman’s character and launching the attack on Metropolis) and finally ends with this (Superman saving the city and redeeming himself). It’s classic storytelling, but the details and the character interactions make it an interesting read. The history behind Lex and Clark would be really interesting to read more about, and I would love to see how this dynamic ends up playing out as they move from this point in the story. I was also really enjoying what we got of Lois. I would be interested in reading more about her! Superman, himself…I’m just not sure. There’s nothing wrong with him…I just don’t really find him all that interesting on his own. Still, this story is well worth the read!

Final Opinion: Solid

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You Call This A Date? (Hawkeye #8)

Okay, so I don’t know why, but when I was reading the blurb on the Marvel site about this issue, I really thought this was supposed to involve some sort of Valentines Day date or something…and that’s certainly not what I got with this issue:

Hawkeye 8

Hawkeye #8 did not disappoint at all this time around, even with me expecting something totally different. Honesty, that happens almost every time I open one of these comics. I expect one thing, and I’m handed something completely different. I love it! The story was as simple as ever (breaking into a strip club owned by the tracksuit mafia and stealing a safe), but as always, it was the little moments that just made this issue amazing.

The very first scene with Black Widow, Clint’s Ex-Wife (who is this??), and Spider-Woman (At least, I think she is…I’ve heard mention of the two of them dating somewhere, but I can’t find it again…Wikipedia is failing me!) and their reactions the Red-Head girls appearance (do we know what her name is? Cherry? Penny?) was amazing, not to mention Clint’s reaction to them. All contained in one page and I could not stop laughing.

Did anyone else notice, when the two are talking over coffee near the beginning, that Clint’s coffee mug was leaking, and he was dripping right onto the dog (who didn’t look too happy about the whole ordeal)? I also love that Kate is the one that dropped them off before hi-tailing it out of there so she wouldn’t be caught (does taking someone to a location knowing they’re going to commit a crime make you an accessory to that crime?)

I also loved Clint’s little rant at the end about how he was going to get fired 😛

The magazine covers were actually really interesting. The most obvious use of them was to give us little clue’s into Red-Head’s past. But I wonder if we actually got to see them in the right order (and therefore have the combination…) or not.

I feel like the ending of this really needed a “To Be Continued” on it, because there is more to this story. The first page was never explained. I feel like we might be starting to take our first tentative steps into a larger storyline, but it’s hard to tell. The Tracksuit Mafia and their anger at Clint has been running throughout, so that’s nothing new. This is the second appearance of Red-Head, but we know we’re at least going to see her once more. And if they really got someone to try and kill him….well, that could get interesting quick. I wonder what a larger storyline would look like in this series…we’ve gotten so used to little, episodic issues. Yes, there have been a few things that held from issue to issue (the tracksuit mafia, Kate, Red-Head, Pizza-Dog, etc) but nothing that would hinder your understanding of the plot. Having an actual overarching storyline would be different, but it’s too soon to say if it would work.

As always, I’m a huge fan of David Aja’s work, but I found myself really liking Annie Wu’s covers that were scattered through this issue. The style was very different, but they seemed to fit right in. I wonder if we’ll get to see her again on this series…

And on a totally unrelated note, did anyone else see the synopsis for Hawkeye #11 up on the Marvel site? No? Check it out here. Sounds like it is going to be hilarious!!

Questions for This Week:

  1. What is with the numbered Colins of A.I.M.?
  2. Who is Clint’s Ex-Wife? **According to Wikipedia it’s Mokingbird, Bobbi Morse**
  3. Are Clint and Spider-Woman dating?
  4. Who is this Iron Fist that keeps getting referenced? **Can also be found on Wikipedia**
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Coming Around the Final Bend…(Hawkeye #6 and #7)

Hawkeye 6

 

Hawkeye #6 is probably my absolute favorite of the series so far. First off, Aja was back, which just made me happy 🙂 Second, the storytelling – yet again a ridiculously simple story that was just done so beautifully! The jumps around in time only made you want to keep reading because you had to see how this whole thing tied up. I will admit, this was the worst issue in terms of bringing out the River Tam impersonation (I think I reread this thing 3 or 4 times, each time having to flip around to things I had already read to figure out where in the chronological storyline I was). But at the end of the day, it was so well done! Sorry, yes, I’m repeating myself 😛

I kind of wonder if the tracksuit mafia is going to mostly be the main source of conflict in this series…they do like to turn up often enough! Especially since Clint has made himself such an enemy to them now…I suppose we will have to wait and see.

I loved seeing some of the other superhero characters outside of their superhero roles. Wolvering and Spiderman going on about Dog Cops – that made my day. Seeing Stark was kind of nice too…though we tend to see plenty of Stark outside of his superhero role in his own comic. Stark does seem to like inserting himself into other comics though, doesn’t he? I seem to run into him outside of his own series often enough!

Also, I can’t say enough about the very beginning of this. Fraction took a beginning that we were getting used to seeing, one where we were thrust in the middle of the worst part of the action, and totally turned it on it’s head. I am totally guilty of thinking they were trying to diffuse a bomb or something…and wondering why it was Clint who was doing it, not Stark. And then I turned the page and felt like a dummy. Well played, Fraction. Well played. It was good timing too…because that beginning was just starting to seem formulaic on his part. Not so much anymore 🙂

At the same time, we are still doing so much character building…I mean, at this point maybe it’s more “character validation” than character building, because we know Clint is a good guy, but every action he takes just seems to justify it more, and in slightly different ways. This time we do get to see a moment of doubt and fear, but he still does the right thing in-spite of that, after some “encouragement” from Kate (Thank you Kate). And I loved the very end where he invited the kids over to watch their show…if they can figure out how to use the TV (and you know they will…kids always seem faster on the uptake when it comes to electronics…)

Yes…have you gotten tired of the gushing yet? Are you still reading? If so, Bravo. Have a cookie! Please!

Hawkeye 7

 

Hawkeye #7…I really hope I’m not going to upset people with this, but it wasn’t my favorite. I was good, don’t get me wrong. Two really touching stories that certainly couldn’t have been told in any other series, though I kind of wish both could have been a little longer! It was another artwork change (twice!), but I liked both well enough. The cover is awesome – I love the little hurricane making the letters in the title fly away!

All together though, it’s just not my favorite Hawkeye issue – I guess #6 still holds that title for me. Considering that they did this on much tighter timelines than usual, I am impressed, but maybe I’m just a snob and I like my carefully crafted, takes-way-too-long-to-produce stories that have been coming out of this series. Sorry 😦  I’m still looking forward to #8 coming out (This Wednesday!! OH MY GOD!!) and cant wait to see what else they end up doing!

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A Mysterious Mystery! (Hawkeye #4 and #5)

I feel kind of lucky that my self-imposed 2-Hawkeye Issues a post limit ended up with both of The Tape issues ending up on one post 🙂 So I’m just going to review them together instead of as two separate comics.

Hawkeye 4Hawkeye 5

First thing I have to mention, and the first thing I noticed…OMG change in artwork! I get the feeling that changing the artist from issue to issue is not all that uncommon, but man, was that ever jarring for me!! The first time I opened it up, and looked at the first picture, and went back to the cover to make sure I was looking at the right comic! Of course, then I noticed that the name of the artist had changed. No offense ment to Pulido (I thought he did a really good job) but I missed Aja for these two issues. I’ve gotten so used to that style that, when I think about this series as a whole, I think about his artwork. Still, Pulido’s artwork is well done. Something about the style and tone made me think old-school murder mystery, which set the tone quite nicely.

Story-wise, I like it. It was a shift for a series that really hasn’t had a serious storyline as of yet, to have one that was more “political”, with all the intrigue and stuff that follows. Not expected, but a good change from what we’ve been reading – I mean, we have to have some variety sometimes, right? Or this awesome comic may just end up getting repetitive. I was a little worried at first, when we first really saw the tape, that this was going to turn into Clint saying “I had to kill him because of <reason #1>, <reason #2>, and <reason #3>.” I’m so glad that isn’t the road they took – again, more good character building among the crazy action that was happening through these two issues.

I did love the cliffhanger at the end of #4, where we saw that Kate had impersonated Madame Masque in order to get the tape. Though how she knew where to go, I’m not entirely sure – it certainly wasn’t in their conversation before he left. She did mention something about “her guys” at the beginning of issue #4, but I don’t know if they had anything to do with it (I’m imagining a little underground informant network around Kate…I think I’ve watched too many movies!).

Also there was a rather large nugget of continuity information near the very end of #5. When Clint is healing up and he’s talking with Maria, Fury, and Kate, Fury says “We’re building the new SHIELD from the ground up, and to avoid creating something like my father made we…I’m using different methods. My methods. And the only way we could flush the mole out was with Bait.” Oooh….so much info in such a small line!! From what it sounds like, Fury was probably the director of SHIELD at some point (not quite sure what happened to him…) but SHIELD under him wasn’t such a good place? Then…what, a takeover? Fury just left? Something happens, Maria takes over, and she and this new Fury (who is the old Fury’s son, apparently!) rebuild SHIELD. That’s what it sounds like at least. So many questions! Adding this to the list below as well (that list is getting LONG!)

Random moment that was really good – sockfooted Clint and the glass. Did anyone else see the bloody footprints he was leaving behind? Yes…this is a little morbid, but it made me laugh…

All in all, a good two parter. Not my favorite issues of the series, but still really good and fun to read!

Plots to Find in Older Comics:

  • Who is this new Nick Fury? – Medium Priority. If he’s going to be a major character in Secret Avengers, I kind of want to know who he is… **Can be found in the Battle Scars series** Thanks thegothamrogue!
  • Previous Team for Hawkeye and Black Widow – Medium Priority. I think it might be the last series of Secret Avengers, and I wonder if something that happened there will be the reason they joined here.
  • What happened to the original Nick Fury? – Low Priority. Just curious.
  • Incident where Kate took over for Hawkeye while he was a ninja – Low Priority. It would be fun to know, but certainly not necessary!
  • Shield Command Structure – Low Priority. We probably don’t need this for most of the stories, but it would be nice to know.
  • Who Else was in the Sinister Six? – Low Priority. Mentioned in Spiderman #1 and #3, but not necessary to know. Like always, just curious.
  • War Against Phoenix Force – Low Priority. This was mentioned in Hulk #1, but not integral. Just curious.
  • Hawkeye’s Past – Low Priority. This is totally out of my own curiosity. You don’t need to know this to understand what’s going in in Hawkeye. It’s mentioned briefly, but it’s really not expanded on much.
  • Tony’s first experience with Extremis – Low Priority. It’s not something that it that integral to the plot, so it’s more of a curiosity than anything else
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Continuing With The Golden Boy (Hawkeye #2 and #3)

So, when I bought that crazy huge stack of comics, I didn’t even bother to pace myself when it came to Hawkeye. It was the best comic I had read in the first few comics I picked up, and from what SM was telling me, it only got better. So I grabbed all 6 issues that I didn’t own at the time 🙂 I wont talk about them all in a single post (can you imagine the moster post that would be?) but you will probably see a lot of repetative, totally boring comments. I’m sorry! I like this guy and this series far too much!

I’m going to do these two issues at a time. That (rather conveniently) puts the two issues about The Tape together, so it works out pretty well:

Hawkeye 2

Hawkeye #2 – The only thing this issue did was solidify exactly why I loved the series as a whole. Again, it’s beautiful storytelling with such a simple idea and plot. Lovely artwork. Can I just say that I loved the never-ending amounts of purple? Purple is my favorite color, so it just made me happy 🙂 And the little moments and little lines just made me so very happy. I think that’s something that I love when it comes to story telling. I love little moments, a single thing that happens or a single line that’s said that’s just hilarious or well placed or executed. I dont quite know how to explain it. I think it’s one of the main reasons I like Whedon’s work (he always interjects these hilarious moments and lines, even in the most serious and dire of situations), and I feel like you get a lot of that in this series as well. Just a couple of examples:

1) The newspaper title on the second page : “Everything Aweful: Oh God Somebody Do Something” – I cracked up laughing when I caught site of it.

2) Clint drinking from the coffee pot after spilling his mug of coffee 🙂

3) The half page newspaper article about the hotel, if you look at the bottom left corner, it’s actually an article about the story in this issue. There’s very little of it there, but I thought it was a nice touch!

4) Clint constantly repeating “Casual” as they’re walking through the room of guests/bad people.

5) Clint and Kate continuing their bantering as they head in two different directions to track down the thieves

6) “And that’s how we robbed the robbers who were robbing the robbers” – I love that line ❤

Another thing that I should mention is something that I was talking about in my last post with Wolverine – I usually don’t like a whole lot of exposition in the form of thoughts or voice-overs from the main character. Usually they’re overdone or they tell us things we can see for ourselves. This issue (and series as a whole) takes that exposition and just does it brilliantly. Most of the time, the thoughts we are privy to help to build or explain a character and drive (instead of detract) from the main story. Even when they do tell us things we can see, they do it to make a point (case in point, when Clint talks about all the little steps to shoot an arrow. Then we see the same little steps when Kate is taking out their pursuers…I thought that was brilliant) and it always ends up coming back later in the story. It’s always a delight to see that happen – it’s beautiful storytelling. I cannot say enough about how much I enjoy reading these issues!

I am curious to know who Kate was prior to the Marvel Now series, though. It seems like she might have been a character before this…I will have to search for that one as well 🙂 Adding this to the list below.

Hawkeye 3

 

Okay, so I don’t think there’s much I can say about Hawkeye #4 that I didn’t already say in Hawkeye #3 (like I said, the praise gets repetative….and lengthy. I feel like I’m gushing so much I’m sending a waterfall to all of you that happen to be reading!) A few things that I really want to mention:

1) I loved the numbering of all the bad decision he made that day. Not only was it a great source of comedy, it also acted kind of like a countdown to drive you toward the end. You always wanted to see just what the next bad decision was, and how much worse could it be than the last one. It was a great way to push the story forward.

2) The boomerang arrow – that was a wonderful example of an innocuous-seeming comment being the key to the ending. Beautiful.

Okay, I’m done. No more gushing, because it’s already been said 🙂

 

Plots to Find in Older Comics:

  • Who is this new Nick Fury? – Medium Priority. If he’s going to be a major character in Secret Avengers, I kind of want to know who he is…
  • Previous Team for Hawkeye and Black Widow – Medium Priority. I think it might be the last series of Secret Avengers, and I wonder if something that happened there will be the reason they joined here.
  • Incident where Kate took over for Hawkeye while he was a ninja – Low Priority. It would be fun to know, but certainly not necessary!
  • Shield Command Structure – Low Priority. We probably don’t need this for most of the stories, but it would be nice to know.
  • Who Else was in the Sinister Six? – Low Priority. Mentioned in Spiderman #1 and #3, but not necessary to know. Like always, just curious.
  • War Against Phoenix Force – Low Priority. This was mentioned in Hulk #1, but not integral. Just curious.
  • Hawkeye’s Past – Low Priority. This is totally out of my own curiosity. You don’t need to know this to understand what’s going in in Hawkeye. It’s mentioned briefly, but it’s really not expanded on much.
  • Tony’s first experience with Extremis – Low Priority. It’s not something that it that integral to the plot, so it’s more of a curiosity than anything else
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In Terms of Introductions, This Was A Good One…(Hawkeye #1)

Before we get into the actual comic book, I just want to give you a little background here – the first time I went to my closest comic book store, it was almost nothing like I expected it to be. I expected a small, minimally lit, kind of dingy place where the comic books were stacked in boxes and covering the walls. I do not know why I had this impression in my head – maybe a residual impression from movies and TV shows – but my local comic book store could not have surprised me more. It was a pretty decent sized store. There were shelves lining three of the four walls (it’s basically a large rectangle, with the front door in a wall that’s entirely windows) and all of their comics rather nicely displayed so that you could see almost everything they had to offer. There is one section near the back where they have some boxes full of older comics that I haven’t really had a chance to explore yet, but it’s obviously not the focus of this store. Most of their stock is newer, recently released comics.

I walked into this place with a tiny list of titles to look for…and probably spent an hour just gawking at everything that was available. This was the longest I have spent in a comic store…and it will probably remain my longest trip until I start digging through the boxes of back issues. I looked at pretty much every single cover that was for sale, just soaking in the sheer variety and number of titles to choose from…and then I went and picked out the first issue in titles that had already been given to me by my friend (I’ll call her SM from now on). Yeah…I’m not so good at being spontaneous about these sorts of things…

Anywho, one of first comics I picked up was Hawkeye:

Image

It was a title that SM had been raving about from the moment she came back from her own comic store. It was one that I wasn’t about to leave there without – and was the first one I read when I came home.

I am going to sound like a broken record with this phrase, but, from the moment I opened that cover, Hawkeye was not at all what I was expecting. The first thing that got me was the artwork. I don’t know why I was expecting cleaner lines and different coloring, but I was. Instead, there are much rougher edges, simple coloring (mind you, I’m not an artist…this may take a lot longer than I think it would…) and very little detail. It took a while to reconcile that with what I had expected. However, the more I read, the more the artwork grew on me. It fits the story and the tone they’re setting, in my humble opinion, and by about halfway through, I was enjoying it immensely.

Second thing that got me was the story. So very simple and absolutely wonderful. I am a sucker for character building, especially with characters I like or don’t know that much about. Hawkeye fell into the later bucket (we really didn’t get that much exposure to him in The Avengers movie, and that’s all the exposure I had ever gotten) and it was just a joy to read. I really like this concept of seeing a Superhero live his or her normal life when they aren’t being a  Superhero. From what I can tell, this isn’t all that common, but its something I kind of wish there was more of.

I think the only thing that threw me off were the jumps in time through the story – and that’s not to say that it was a bad thing. I think it was executed very well and tied itself up very neatly. But apparently I don’t do well with non-linear stories. I was having to fight back the compulsion to mirror River Tam and start cutting out panels and put them back together in chronological order! That didn’t happen, of course, but I did have to reread a few times to make sure I fully understood what was going on. There was one jump in time where the Tracksuit Mafia came to confront Clint in the Veterinary Hospital, and that ended with a shot of the vet clinic’s window from the outside. And the very next panel (which was a jump back in time) was Clint being thrown through a very similar looking window. I was rather confused (The dog was back!! And he looked fine!). It took a second read-through to realize that the window he was thrown through was the chinese restaurant window. I’m gonna blame that on me being such a noob when it comes to Comics, because that’s probably the only thing that I had a problem with. I loved everything else about this!!

Oh, and seriously, Clint has some of the best random moments and one-liners. I’m thinking of starting a quote book. Or a Tumblr. Or something. They’re just too good to ignore 🙂

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