Art by Adam Kubert

Dec 12, 2018

"Origin": Board Review of Hawkman No. 7

Hawkman (2018) No. 7
Writer: Robert Venditti
Penciller: Bryan Hitch
Inkers: Hitch, Andrew Currie
Colorist: Jeremiah Skipper
Lettering: Starkings and Comicraft
Cover: Bryan Hitch, Alex Sinclair
Variant Cover: Julian Totino Todesco
Assistant Editor: Andrew Marino
Group Editor: Marie Javins
Released December 12, 2018

In Hawkman No. 7, we finally get the origin of Hawkman that we have been promised for months. In an interview before the series began in June, writer Robert Venditti told us he had thought of a way to bring all of the Hawkman versions together. In the very first issue, we found out that Hawkman reincarnates across time and space. In issue No. 7, we discover how it all happened.
There have been many comments over the last few days, mostly lamenting over Hawkman getting yet another origin. "Another origin will only confuse things further!" But as I read this issue, Venditti's version of Hawkman's origin was not confusing in the least bit. It brought purpose and meaning to the 79-year history of Hawkman. It was inspiring.
Over the years, I have read many Hawkman stories by many master story-tellers, all unique and gifted in their own way. As I read the newly revealed origin, the Hawkmen of Gardner Fox, Tony Isabella, Timothy Truman, John Ostrander, Geoff Johns, Jimmy Palmiotti, William Messner-Loebs and many others soared through my memory. Venditti's origin brought together every single Hawkman we have all read in the past and gave it all the meaning and reason for it all. We now know why Hawkman does what he does. Venditti has completed what Gardner Fox started and Geoff Johns expanded on. 
I'm often asked which version or story line of Hawkman I would recommend to a new reader. I usually recommend three or four of my favorite series to start off with, but I now have a new answer. I would tell the new reader or Hawkfan to first read the Venditti series, and then every other Hawkman story will make sense and have greater meaning. 
Venditti did not reveal everything in the issue. There is a woman who first appears on Thanagar and appears to be the catalyst of Ktar's inner struggle and enlightenment. Ktar asks for her name but it is never revealed. I believe that she is the first Shiera and that Venditti will tell us who she is eventually. If she is the first version of Shiera, I thought it was a beautiful way to bring her into the story of Hawkman. In past issues, Carter Hall appears to mention Hawkgirl in his journal. I now believe that this is the woman he is thinking of. I look forward to her story being told eventually.
The story ends with Carter headed to a place that many have been looking forward to; Krypton. This is where he will find the weapon he will need to fight the approaching enemy. Now that Hawkman's origin and purpose have been revealed, the series will continue to move forward and reveal many more things about Hawkman that we never knew before.
The art by Bryan Hitch continues to amaze. I'm running out of superlatives to describe his Hawkman. With assistance with the inks from Andrew Currie and the colors by Jeremiah Skipper, the comic continues to be one of the most beautiful books out there. Read through the story, and then go back and just admire the work that Hitch and company are putting out month after month. In this issue, the close up of Ktar's eyes were so well-drawn, looking like the eyes of a Hawk. Just stunning.
Hawkman has been defined in several ways. He is about flight, exploration, discovery, and reincarnation. I have always thought that his story is about order. Here is a hero who desperately wants to find the answers to his life and get his life, his existence, and his soul back in order. And we now have a new definition of Hawkman; redemption. With this new origin and meaning, Hawkman is soaring higher than he ever has before.

Rating: 10 out of 10

Variant Cover by Julian Totino Tedesco

2 comments:

  1. It was great reading your perspective as someone who has been a fan for so long, versus myself who has really just begun to explore the character. I've known about Hawkman since I was a kid, but this is the first time I've really read about him. I'm all caught up on this series, and I'm currently reading Geoff Johns run. Can you suggest some others in particular that I can read to get to know Hawkman, and Hawkgirl better?

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