Hawkman #3 // Review
So far, Hawkman is turning out to be one of DC’s standout titles. The creative team of writer Robert Venditti, artist Bryan Hitch and colorist Alex Sinclair have crafted a great action/adventure title with added bonus of mysticism and time travel. Only in the last few years have Hawkman and Hawkgirl respectively taken a more prominent role in the DC Universe. Hawkgirl has been quite busy in Scott Snyder’s Justice League run, while Carter Hall, alias Hawkman, has been in pursuit of answers from his past. Fearing a vision of the Earth in ruins coming to fruition, Carter will have to search time and space for a solution, one that he may not like.
Writer Robert Venditti has found quite the niche lately with crafting action/adventure titles. First with Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps, now with Hawkman and Damage. All three issues of Hawkman thus far have started out with some element of exploration, mystery or action, helping to set the pace for the rest of the book. While many iterations of Hawkman have seen him as the stoic savage warrior, Venditti has crafted a very grounded version of Carter Hall. Even though his past lives have taken him through time and space, this version is very relatable because of his humanity. Venditti further showcases Carter’s humanity with conversations he has with people all over the world. These people have a personal connection with some past incarnation of Carter that has positively impacted their lives. The inner workings of Carter’s brain are also explored through a running inner monologue. Venditti is able to highlight Carter’s riddle solving and critical thinking, as well as his tactics when it comes to battle.
With this series spanning time and space, artist Bryan Hitch has been able to showcase a variety of unique settings, creatures and characters. In the first issue, it was a hidden cave with a giant stone guardian. The second was a trip back to ancient Egypt, and issue three features the mysterious and dangerous Dinosaur Island. Hitch showcases two incredible battles in this book that will delight readers and raise the bar for action for this series. Carter’s first encounter is with a terrifying T-Rex that fits right in with the modern scientific theory of their appearance: hair, feathers and all. While this battle takes place on a jungle floor choked with thick tree trunks, his second battle takes place at the summit of an intimidating mountain above a miles thick layer of clouds. They may just be clouds, but Hitch effortlessly makes them look like they could float right off the page. Carter is also visibly battered from his battles, as his muscular arms and chest are strewn with scars and scratches beneath coarse hair.
As previously discussed, colorist Alex Sinclair does an incredible job of making sunlight an integral part of the series. Even through the thick canopy of the jungle, radiant beams are able to shine down while Carter is battling the T-Rex. There is also a beautiful sunrise and sunset peeking around the side of this awe inspiring mountain that looks as if it would be impossible to climb. Yes, while this may seem overdone writing about the presence of sunlight in this series, Sinclair has found new ways in each issue to really make it pop off of the page.
Hawkman is a character that many may feel hasn’t received his just rewards, playing second fiddle to many of the heavy hitters of the DC Universe. Carter Hall is proving with this series that he has so much more to offer. Robert Venditti, Bryan Hitch and Alex Sinclair have once again shown that Hawkman deserves his own series and can take the reigns of a riveting action/adventure title that will hopefully have a long run.