Tagged: kate bishop

Chris’ Comics: All New Hawkeye #4

All-New-Hawkeye-4All New Hawkeye #4

Jeff Lemire, Ramon Perez, Ian Herring

Marvel $3.99

It seems all too fitting to be talking about Marvel’s most famous archers on Valentine’s Day weekend. Granted talking about Deadpool on V-day weekend 2016 is also very fitting this year, I’ll save that anecdote for my Spider-Man/Deadpool #2 review.

All New Hawkeye #4 kicks off the “Hawkeyes” story arc, which delves into the past of Hawkeye Kate Bishop, while Hawkeye Clint Barton teams up with S.H.I.E.LD. in the present. While I wasn’t keen on the Hawkeye origin flashbacks in Volume 0, looking at Katie-Kate’s roots is concept I can get behind. It’s something few very writers have explored, and after Fraction dropped the bomb that her dad is kind of a criminal jerkface, it opens up some neat story telling possibilities for Jeff Lemire to use.

HAWKEYE2015B004_int2_4-932x1414Ramon Perez has been a fantastic artist on this title through and through, and this issue is no exception. I dig how all the characters except for Kate are drawn a little looser and sketchier, where as Ms. Bishop is more focused and refined. It’s a cool way of ensuring that reader realize that SHE’s the focus of the story, and it’s a inventive variant on what Perez did for the Clint flashbacks. Color artist Ian Herring doesn’t attempt anything new for these scenes, which is fine. There’s ZERO need to fix what’s not broken, and those water color style colors are still great. The modern era art looks great as usual, although I REALLY wish we could go an arc where one of the story lines isn’t set in a snowy area. That being said, I love how clean and bright it is, especially when it’s blended together with the flashback segments on the same page.

Getting back to Lemire, this is definitely one of his strongest issues to date.He’s finally begin to find his footing, and develop his own voices for these characters. He wisely sticks to the path laid out before him, which only makes sense. His Kate reads a lot like one tumblr_o2h897Ci4R1uozhf6o1_500would traditionally expect Lady Hawkguy to sound like (well read, sarcastic, and extremely mature for her age), and his Clint is the goofball with a heart of gold we’ve all come to love. Lemire is also beginning to inject more humor into his scripts, which I appreciate, and I hope to see more of it in the future. Lemire’s Hawkeye has a bunch of heart, but more humor and action is always welcomed. My only real complaint is the reveal regarding the Project Communion kid’s origins, because man I am real tired of Marvel forcing that particular thing down my throat.

All New Hawkeye continues to be an enjoyable read that finally delivers on a Kate Bishop focused story we were promised over a year ago. It’s clear that Lemire has had plans for the character for awhile, and it’s great to see the character as the focus again. Ramon Perez and Ian Herring’s art continues to find new ways to impress readers, and it’s amazing that they manage to switch things up for every new arc. “Hawkeyes” is off to a fun start, and the cover for issue 5 promises that this is going to be another great arc.

 

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Chris’ Comics: All New Hawkeye #2

4938440-hawkeye2015b002_dc11_lr-0All New Hawkeye #2

Jeff Lemire, Ramon Perez, Ian Herring

Marvel $3.99

Let it be known that I’m writing/editing this article with a fun little head cold. Big ups to the New York area weather being insane this month, also expect more typos and grammar errors than usual.

So let’s talk about Kate Bishop today! Katie-Kate is known for co-starring in Hawkeye with Clint these days, but before the excellent and often mentioned Fraction/Aja series, Kate only popped up in Young Avengers. As much as I like the Clint/Kate dynamic, I missed the relationship she had with her YA pals, and am thrilled to see it back in this issue of All New Hawkeye. Also hey, here come some slight spoilers.

The Hawkeyes are joined by Novarr/Marvel Boy and Ms. America Chavez in All New Hawkeye #2, which sees the future versions of Clint and Kate battle the Mandarin, while their current day counterparts deal with their failing out. It is not the upbeat Clint and Kate story we get from the Marvel Holiday special, but it’s a good comic none the less.

tumblr_nz3ljtGLhT1sy4rryo2_1280Much like Jeff Lemire steering his scripts away from the tone set by Fraction, artist Ramos Perez continues to make the Hawkeye visuals his own with every passing issue. I really like how more and more animated his art is getting when it comes to the modern day Hawk-stuff, which is best showcased when Perez is drawing Lucky the Pizza Dog, and the conversation between Miss America and Kate. The future stuff doesn’t look as good due it’s more sketchy style, but works well enough. Ian Herring’s colors are just as great, going a little more bolder and brighter when it comes to coloring the present day pages, and more experimental and psychedelic for the future stuff. I think by coloring those pages as such. Herring’s implying that the future isn’t set in stone by doing so, BUT I also may be reading into things too much.

Writer Jeff Lemire finally fulfills his claim that Kate is the co-star of this comic by giving the lady Hawkeye more of the focus this time around. While he can’t match Fraction in ttumblr_nz3ljtGLhT1sy4rryo3_1280erms of humor, he’s certainly managed to capture Matt’s tone when it comes to the more assertive and serious Kate Bishop. And there’s a bit of Kieron Gillen influence to his dialogue when it comes to writing the Young Avengers kids, which I dig. In addition to that, there’s a really interesting plot twist that goes down in the future portion of the comic that I’m now really excited to see play out.

The fully realized team of Jeff Lemire, Ramon Perez, and Ian Herring prove that the previous issue was not a lucky break, as All New Hawkeye #2 is a very enjoyable comic. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing the Hawkeyes work together again in the future, while trying to figure out their relationship in the present, which examines how emotionally dependent Clint is on Kate, and maybe the other way around too. I’m thrilled to see the creative team bounce back like this after that shaky first arc, and expect them to continue to thrive as they have on these last two issues.

 

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Chris’ Comics: Marvel Holiday Special

Gwenpool-Holiday-Special-001-(2016)-(Digital)-(Nahga-Empire)-001Marvel Holiday Special

Charles Soule, Langdon Foss, Megan Wilson, Margaret Stohl, Juan Gedeon, Gerry Dugan, Danilo D. Beyruth, Christopher Hasting, Gurihru and more

Marvel $5.99

While I’ve stated plenty of times that I do not paying more than $4 for a comic book, occasionally there’s an exception. Gwenpool, a character who’s presence has jacked up the cost of Howard the Duck to $5, is not one of those reasons. HOWEVER, if she happens to be in a book that also give me a follow up to the excellent Deadpool Vs Hawkeye  mini series, it certainly does work in the character’s favorite. It also helps that I’m a sucker for Holiday Specials, especially ones involving a bunch of my favorite Marvel characters.

The Gwenpool Marvel Holiday Special gives the readers 4 different stories, and all of them are excellent. There’s a 20 page She-Hulk story by Charles Soule and Langdon Foss that puts a nice little bow on that creative’s team run on the recently concluded series, and serves as as the center of the story. It’s not a must read for anyone who’s not previously a fan of the series, but if you enjoyed Soule and company’s run on the book, you’ll love this tumblr_nz58qsaHqu1sqep2mo1_1280story. Joining that story is a Ms Marvel story by Maraget Stohl and Juan Gedeon, which I think is the first time Kamala has been written in a solo story by someone other than co-creator G Willow Wilson!

The Ms Marvel story is also a hoot; Juan Gedeon‘s art isn’t the most eye popping, but he manages to capture all the proper emotions beats, making it more than serviceable. Stohl’s dialogue is terrific, leading a fun little story that casts Ms. Marvel as a Scrooge of sorts. Overall I’m a fan of the story, and glad to see the creative team do the character justice. From there it’s the 10 pages story I was most excited for, which reunites Hawkeyes Clint and Kate with their pal Deadpool. While reading the aforementioned mini series definitely makes the story more enjoyable, it’s not necessary. Much like Ms Marvel, it’s another fun holiday themed story, with that special brand of wacky only a character like Deadpool can bring. It’s also incredibly heart-warming, as Gerry Duggan blends emotions and humor quite while, while Danilo S. Beyruth absolutely kills it on the visuals. It’s obviously my favorite part of the book.

As for the Gwenpool story, it’s a tad tricky to get into. I sure as hell love the creative team involved, but not having read the 2 chapters in Howard the Duck take make the story tumblr_nz47iymTQI1sqep2mo1_1280crafted by Christopher Hasting and Gurihru a tad confusing. It also have very little to do with the holidays, so I’m not entirely sure why it was added to begin with, abd suspect that Marvel is just hoping that Gwenpool can carry a book much like how Spider-Gwen has. But it’s still a neat  story than ends on an incredibly cute note.

The weird little Gwenpool misstep aside, the Marvel Holiday Special is a fun little anthology that offers the reader a lot for 50 pages of content. Granted I am super bias towards this book for the Hawkeye related content, I still found the rest of the book enjoyable, and encourage you to pick it up if you already aren’t for  Hawk or Gwen-related reasons.

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Chris’ Comics: All New Hawkeye #4 & Grayson #10

portrait_incredible (3)All New Hawkeye #4

Jeff Lemire, Ramon Perez, Ian Herring

Marvel $3.99

Following in Hawkeye volume one’s footprints, All New Hawkeye is back after a slight delay. #BURN A reverse of the previous issue sees the bulk of the issue being dedicated to the drawn out Clint and Barney origins, with the final panel of the page being dedicated to the present, with Clint and Kate dealing with the three spooky children the Hawkeyes liberated from Hydra. Much like the previous issue, those panels are mostly dialogue free, and I find them the most interesting, as it feels more in the same vein as the previous volume, and Ramon Perez more simplistic style looks gorgeous. Ian Herring‘s colors perfectly capture the style used by Matt Hollingsworth for these scenes, yet his best stuff is saved for the flashback material. Here we see a lot of interesting uses of purples and blues clashing against a brighter color which clash nicely with the muted art work.

HawkeyeBWith the origin-story stuff taking the point again for this issue, I find myself slightly less invested with this issue. Don’t get me wrong, it looks great and genuinely do like what Jeff Lemire has set up with the brothers Barton. But ultimately it’s not a story I want to read. Clint’s origin is arguably one of the least interesting aspects of the character, because who wants to read about the circus in 2015 right? I applaud Lemiere and Perez doing something different, but I much prefer Clint and Kate arrowing it up in Brooklyn than I do Hawkeye babies.  Especially after 4 issues, or in Lemire’s case, a hunk of his career. Also it really clashes with the promise of more Kate Bishop, who’s barely in this issue.

All New Hawkeye #4 takes some neat artistic risks, but I’m tired of this origin story. The modern stuff is far more compelling, and hopefully there’s more of that after this arc.

 

Grayson-10Grayson #10

Tim Seeley, Tom King, Mikel Janin, Jeromy Cox

DC $3.99

Grayson continues to be a god send to the character of Richard “Booty Booty Booty” Grayson. Ol’ Dick (heheheh) has been on bit of quality decline ever since the new 52 started, but his role as a spy has given him a much needed shot in the arm that Dick hasn’t seen since Grant Morrison and friends made him Batman. Grayson #10 is the second installment of the “Nemesis” arc, which finds that boy Grayson amiss of a murder mystery where he is the main suspect. Oh and Lex Luthor shows up, which is big, because Lex is one of the reasons Dick had to fake his death to begin with. It’s compelling stuff, with some really engaging dialogue from Tim Seeley and Tom King and the cliffhanger ending is spectacular.

Grayson-10-ViewOne of the advantages of turning Dick Grayson into a globe spanning hero is Mikel Janin being able to draw the hell out of a number of exotic locations in a single issue. Two moments that stand out to me visually were the scene in Madrid early in the book, and later when Lex and Dick meet in Corscia. Aside from drawing the prettiest of people, Janin draws some gorgeous scenery, beautifully colored by Jeremy Cox. Cox is also another fantastic artist, managing to mix channel travel brochure quality colors as well as Jim Steranko SHIELD era stuff. Coz is easily one of the most underrated colorists in the business and pairing him with Mikel Janin has produced some incredible looking art. Meanwhile, Seeley and King continue to provide a solid and entertaining script with some really smart and fun dialogue.

Grayson #10 is another fine installment of a book that got me back into DC Comics. It’s spy drama and super heroics at it’s best, and I’m glad to see the team’s first multi-issue storyline going so well.

 

 

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Troy’s Toys But with Comics: All New All Shameless Edition

So hey, before I start my weekly Hawkeye discussion/Comics Review, I wanted to make the FP Faithful aware of a few things

1)The DC Sneak Peeks from this week are pretty great, and if you don’t want to spend your money on Convergence tie ins, are available on Comixology and several other websites. My personal picks are We Are Robins Black Canary and Batgirl, but you should definitely track down the Starfire, Grayson and Gotham Academy ones as well.

2) Speaking of digital offerings, Fresh Romance is available on Comixology too. I kickstarted it, and man, I am glad that I did. It’s a cool return to romance comics featuring some fantastic stories by several rad up and coming creators. It’s 5 bucks for 30 pages, which I know is steep, but it’s a rare occasion where the price is justified by the quality of the content.

3)  June kicks off Summer Convention time, which means if you’re on the East Coast, you get to see me dressed up as a super hero in a crowded environment. I’ll be at Special Edition NYC, FLAMECON and Heroescon next month, and if you want to say hi or track my nonsense on social media, I’m on twitter & instagram @TheAnarCHris .

 

Alright, shameless plug theater is over, Hawk-talk begins now

All-New_Hawkeye_Vol_1_3_TextlessAll-New Hawkeye #3

Jeff Lemire/Ramon Perez/Ian Herring

Marvel $3.99

When writing one Crapsack Tire Fire (aka Clint Barton), one way to keep my interest in the character is to have equal amounts of one Kate Bishop and one Lucky, the Eisner award winning pizza dog. It took Team Hawkguy 2.0 three issues to realize that, which makes issue 3 the best issue of All-New Hawkeye to date.

This time around, writer Jeff Lemire limits the Flashback/Origin-y stuff to one panel per page. It’s a neat storytelling technique, as most of these story allows artist Ramon Perez tell the story in mostly dialogue free scenes. It also allows the reader to see how these circus bits relate to the story that takes place in the present, which is treated as the A-side story this issue. Clint and Katie Kate has to deal with the fallout of their mission, and end up getting into more trouble as a Hawkeye tends to do.

With a few issues under their belts, Lemire and Perez read and look more comfortable on this title. Lemire’s dialogue flows better, and the Kate and Clint banter is great. Lemire’s Kate Bishop has noticeably improved with every issue, as his Clint. Perez’s art has also improved ten fold with the modern setting, and we’re treated to a double page multi-panel fight scene that is delightful as it is brutal.  Perez’s more traditional art style is a little more loose and animated than it has been in the past, and the book is all the better for it. It’s still relatively minimalist, but so expressive and energetic. And Ian Herring‘s wonderful colors give the book a nice since of depth despite being so flat like Matt Hollingsworth before him. There’s a sense of fun to this comic, something missing from the previous issues

With the rocky start  hopefully behind it, it appears All New Hawkeye has finally found it’s footing and is becoming a solid title.  I imagine those who are trade waiting it may not be as harsh as I have been as they get read the story in a single chunk. But as someone who reads it monthly, it’s nice to see this creative team improved steadily with every issue, and hope the team keeps it up.

 

 

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Hawkeye Volume 1 Review: A Guy, a girl and a pizza dog

Hawkeye : My Life as a Weapon

Written by: Matt Fraction

Art by: David Aja, Javier Pulido, Alan Davis

Collects Hawkeye (2012) 1-5, Young Avengers Presents 6

Published by: Marvel Comics, retail price $16.99

A great creative team can get me to read any book on the stand, despite what characters are involved. Case in point, I could have not given any less of a damn about the Young Avengers in the past, but then Marvel NOW tossed Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie on the title, and I haven’t missed an issue yet. Having a creative team you like work on a character you love however, is one of the best things you can ask for as a comics fan, and I’m a pretty big Hawkeye fan.

While the last time Fraction/Aja worked together on a book ( Immortal Iron Fist) was fantastic, both contributor’s have stepped up their game for the Marvel on-going “Hawkeye” series, which the first collected edition just dropped. The premise is simple: What does the most human Avenger do during his  time off? Obviously get into a ton of trouble, because this is a comic book, and violence & drama sell. Clint ends up trading blows with his Landlord and his Bros (Bros), an evil version of Cirque De Soleil and eventually, a collection of Marvel’s nastiest gangsters, spies, and thugs for a mission of sorts for S.H.I.E.L.D.. Barton also has to deal with himself, and the series of poor life choices he makes. And when he’s not, he’s usually hanging around his neighbors in Brooklyn, allowing Fractions and friend to do some nice character building.

There’s also a dog who eats pizza named Lucky, that both I and Tumblr are very fond of.

And even though the book is called “Hawkeye”, Clint’s not the sole start of the title. Kate Bishop, also Hawkeye, is the straight man to Clint, despite being 11-12 years younger than him. Fraction does a great job making her a polar opposite to Clint, but every so often will drop a reminder that she’s 18, and all the baggage that goes with that age. Also props  to the artists’ attached to the collection that do a fine job of drawing her at her proper age, and even giving her a cool new redesign. She’s a much of a main character as Clint is, only not as much of a mess. And if you’re not familiar with Kate was a character (a shame, Young Avengers volume 3 is great), Marvel did a solid and included a Fraction penned-one shot where both Hawkguys meet for the first time.

I’ve praised the writing a lot so far, but David Aja and Javier Pulido deserve a ton of props for the art in this book. Like Chris Samsee on Daredevil (also edited by Steve Whacker!), this book has a very European art book vibe to it, which works even as a street level Marvel title. Both artists do some amazing work, and 12-13 panels per page is something not uncommon in the series. The art does the script justice and it shows what kind of magic results from creators bringing their A game to a title .

I’ve given Hawkeye a ton of praise on this site before, and it’s deserved. And I’m not the only one. The book has gone through several reprintings for each issues, and it’s up for a number of Eisner’s this year. For $17, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be reading this book right now.

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