This is where my usually hilarious intro paragraph goes, but I don’t got the time for that today. Hawk-talk time is now!
Matt Fraction/ David Aja
Marvel Comics, $2.99, 20 pages
David $%$#ing Aja y’all.
As someone who’s given up drawing some time ago, I can only imagine the frustration that results in reading this issue/series if you want to draw comics for a living. David Aja, who’s almost reinvented himself for this book, returns after a brief hiatus, and shows us why this title won an Eisner and a Harvey for art in the same year. Using 9 panel pages (his idea, as I’ve asked him as such on the Twitter), Aja and Fraction finally reveal what Clint Barton’s been up to after the events in issue 9, filling in some the blanks and raising new questions. There’s some emotional stuff going down, as Clint’s life seems to be falling apart around him, due to the choices (both good and bad) that’s he’s made throughout the series.
Matt Fraction also does his share of heavy lifting in a relatively action free issue. His dialogue is pitch perfect, as you can tell his Hawkguy is obviously going through a rough patch, and Clint knows things aren’t going to get better anytime soon. Fraction’s Hawkeye is a very human one, despite rolling with the Avengers and 2 of his super powered exes showing up. Hawkguy’s little corner of the Marvel Universe is very dark right now, and it’s fascinating to see how Clint is going to get himself back on his feet. Marvel’s best book not-named Daredevil continues to amaze, and I cannot stress how great of a read it is.
Gerry Duggan/David Yardin & Howard Chaykin
Marvel, $3.99, 20 pages
Once again I’m talking about A+X and once again Cyclops is featured in the title. Look I bought other issues without Cyclops in them. Like 5 of them. So I’m only semi-bias. #prspin
A+X #13 is a weird read, and I mean that in a good way. Instead of there being 2 done in one stories, we get a done in one by the legendary Howard Chaykin, and then the first chapter of a 6 part story by Duggan and Yardin. Duggan’s tale revolves around a really obscure early 2000s Alan Davis (or Claremont. I forget) X-storyline involving Skrulls, and is injected with the humor he’s known for from his current run on Deadpool. He doesn’t shy away from the fact that Cyclops and Cap still hate each other, so if you want to see a story where Cyclops attacks Captain America with a frying pan, this is the book. David Yardin handles the art duties, and it’s not the best drawn book out there, but it’s solid. It’s very Neal Adams’ influenced, and his Cyclops is actually really solid, so I imagine with only improves over time. The 2 enemies forced to work together story is nothing new, but it can be fun when used right. Hopefully this will be one of those stories, because the 1st chapter implies that it has the right tools to be.
The Emma Frost/ Black Widow Chaykin B-story is a little bit risque, and actually super funny at times. It’s weird seeing Chaykin’s art in color after reading Satellite Sam, but Edgar Delgado does some really interesting stuff with it, and I dig it, particularly when it comes to the coloring of Emma and Widow’s lips. Which sounds weird I know, but it really stands outs to me. It’s not an incredibly deep read, but it’s fun, which is all I ask for. Your mileage may vary with this book, but as someone who like the majority if the characters and creators involved, I liked it.
Brian Michael Bendis & Chris Bachalo
Marvel, $3.99, 20 pages
There is a plethora of X-man on X-man violence in this book, and I am okay with this. It means Chris Bachalo can flex some creative muscles and go H.A.M. with the fight scenes, and he does. Big Swords, mutant powers and falling Deadpools make for a great throwdown, and the half-dozen inkers assigned to Bachalo work much better this time around. He’s probably one of the best “Widescreen” artists working in comics now, as his fights scenes are kinetic as hell, especially with Magik in particular.
That’s not to say that Bendis doesn’t contribute anything, because he does, as the last few pages unofficially tie-in both into Age of Ultron and this week’s Superior Spider-Man quite nicely. It leads to a nice little twist, which explains/spoils some stuff that’s been solicited as of late. I’m also really digging of the unexplained “History” related to the future X-men, which will hopefully be delve into more sometime down the line, because these little teases are KILLING me. And once again Bendis and Bachalo end the book with a final page that is beyond badass. Battle of the Atom continues to be everything I love about the X-men crammed into a super fun event.
And that wraps us this Marvel heavy week. Next time, I hope you like creator owned books, because I’m tired of yelling at y’all to support them. That and hell of a pair debut on Wednesday.