Hawkeye #1

Hawkeye #1 Published: August 2012
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Genre: Superhero
Writer: Matt Fraction
Penciller: David Aja
Colorist: Matt Hollingsworth
Letterer: Chris Elipoulos
Format: Single Issue
Pages: 23 pages

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Hawkeye #1 introduces us to the Avenger who’s

A wonderfully entertaining self-contained tale, the first issue of the new Hawkeye series definitely lived up to its pre-release hype. Clint is smart, funny, compassionate, and fearless, and Fraction does an excellent job of demonstrating how even in his daily life, Hawkeye is an Avengers. But even more than that, he’s a good guy. A reckless one, sure, but one who deserves his own series and who we should be interested in following.

While the plot itself is not overly original — superheroes with cash throwing around their money to save the helpless common man is nothign new, after all — but it was executed in a solid and interesting way. The framing of the dog’s story was integrated skillfully with the casino scene. And I am pretty much the opposite of an animal person yet was still touched by Clint’s relationship with the dog. The “tracksuit mafia” guys felt a little over-the-top at times (bro), but I did like Ivan and the fact that he wasn’t evil, just not particularly considerate of other people. I have definitely had my share of landlords like this. A realistic antagonistic rooted in this ordinary life of Clint’s that he gets to have slivers of when he has off-time from the Avengers.

One of my favorite exchanges in the issue was Clint assuring everyone int he waiting room that it was okay that he was beating up on some random dude who had strolled into the clinic — because he was an Avenger. It certainly made me wonder if people just started trying that when caught in tight places. Amusingly enough, though, another dude in the waiting room chips in, “Are you, like, Iron Fist or something?” A nice little Easter egg tribute to Fraction and Aja’s previous run on Immortal Iron Fist.

The Verdict

Whether you’ve loved, hated, or been completely apathetic toward Hawkeye in the past, I’d recommend you pick up this book. It does a fantastic job of illustrating how Hawkeye is relatable and how Clint Barton is a hero. Both through the story and through the grungy, down-to-earth-but-thankfully-still-legible art. I can’t wait to see what else the series has in store for us.