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Mel’s Muses: Hawkeye #2, Ultimate Comics All-New Spider-Man #14 and DC Comics #0 Issues

Fresh from a comic book high after last week’s STGCC, I picked up more than a dozen titles from this latest shipment. DC Comics kicked off their issue #0 lineup that looked at each title hero’s origin of sorts. There were a couple hits and misses there but first, some musings on these Marvel titles. Spoilers ahead!

Hawkeye #2. I thought the first issue was a little low key and underwhelming. Hawkeye or rather Clint Barton was out of costume most of the time and was playing more of a neighborhood watch role than being our hot head Avenger. A good enough read but for a first issue, I was expecting more. But with this week’s issue #2, writer Matt Fraction and artist David Aja just turned this title into pure storytelling gold and my pick of the week.

There were just so many things about Hawkeye #2 that hit the target. There’s the gorgeous Aja cover and a bunch of familiar Marvel villains like the Ringmaster and his Circus of Crime for starters. Fraction’s storytelling and Aja’s art makes it all seemed so refreshing and fun. I absolutely loved the breakdowns Aja did with the panels as it gave the story a sort of lighthearted feel to it all. Like a new favorite song, this here is an issue that you would want to read again and again.

I don’t see why this couldn’t have been the debut issue. I believe it basically sets up a new storyline involving not just Marvel’s New York crime lords but also some mysterious impending doom descending upon the city. Plus fans of the Young Avengers’ resident archer Kate Bishop will be glad to see her back in action as Hawkeye’s sidekick.

Although overall I thought it was a brilliant issue, there was a tiny bit about it that I just wasn’t all that comfortable with. It’s to do with how the story ended as we see our heroes escaping the Kingpin, Hammerhead and other big-time Marvel gangsters, with a boatload of their money. So the crime lords declare war on Hawkeye because of that? Really? I have read stories where the stakes were much higher in order to get these big bad guys personally involved. An Avenger stealing money from them is enough to get all their panties in a bunch? Just seemed rather uncharacteristic of the baddies.

Anyway, this is still a fantastic book so don’t miss it!

Ultimate Comics All-New Spider-Man #14. Fun yet predictable. That pretty much sums up exactly how I feel about this issue.

The story opens with Ultimate Captain America confronting Miles Morales about being the new Ultimate Spider-Man. Cap pretty much forbids Morales from putting on the costume as he thinks the boy is way too young and it’s too dangerous out there. Just ask Peter Parker. Morales also meets Aunt May and Parker’s ex-girlfriends as everyone picks a side. Should Morales continue to be Spidey or not? Then when Cap answers a distress call where old Spidey foe Rhino is on a rampage, everything just drives like it’s on auto-drive.

With such a setup, it basically screams to old comic book readers how this would all go down even before reaching the end of the issue. Morales would single-handedly take down the Rhino, save the day and Cap would make him an honorary Avenger. Ok, maybe not that last part but I was right about Cap giving in to Morales by the final page and I’m sure most of you were too.

Like I said, writer Brian Bendis delivered a decent script as always and the art by David Marquez was equally enjoyable. But I just don’t like it when I can predict the ending halfway through a story. Damn it! I like surprises in my comics!

DC Comics #0 Issues. Now for something quite different, as I do a lighting round musings on some of this week’s #0 issues by DC Comics.

Action Comics #0. A straightforward but heart-warming tale by Grant Morrison on Clark’s first few weeks in Metropolis. Nice spin too on how ‘S’ came to stand for Superman.

Phantom Stranger #0. The Co-Publisher of DC Comics wrote this?!? No, just no. This is just plain bad on so many levels. Made me truly miss the pre-52 Spectre and Phantom Stranger.

Swamp Thing #0. Writer Scott Synder introduces an old yet new Swamp Thing and Arcane gets an updated and very bloody origin. Good stuff that ties in with the ongoing Swamp Thing and Animal Man crossover.

Animal Man #0. Writer Jeff Lemire introduces an old yet new Animal Man and Arcane gets an updated and very bloody origin. Good stuff that ties in with the ongoing Swamp Thing and Animal Man crossover.

Earth 2 #0. An issue devoted to the origin of Earth 2 super-villain Terry Sloan (better known as superhero Mr. Terrific to longtime DC Comics readers). Always enjoyed reading stories about heroes gone bad. This is a good one by writer James Robinson.

Green Lantern #0. It’s the much-hype issue on a Muslim-American becoming the new Green Lantern. And if I’m reading it correctly, the ring was malfunctioning when it chose him? Not sure what exactly that means yet but still an entertaining issue by writer Geoff Johns.

World’s Finest #0. Against the backdrop of an invasion of Earth by Darkseid, we get the first meeting between Earth 2’s Supergirl and Huntress as told by the one and only Paul Levitz and drawn by Kevin Maguire. Beautiful women drawn by Kevin Maguire, that’s all the reason I needed to pick this up!

Cavalock

Melvin Yong has worked way too long in the media and advertising industry. He now spends his time with his family, writing short horror stories and playing lots of board games.

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