The below review is written by Tim Board! Tim is the founder of the popular Hawkworld group on Facebook and the growing Hawkworld twitter. Feel free to share any feedback in the comments section.
DC Comics Rebirth Spoilers and Review follow for Death of Hawkman #5 follow.
At the end of Death of Hawkman No. 4, Despero had taken most of the existing Nth metal, the moon over Thanagar had been destroyed, killing millions of Thanagarians in the process, and Hawkman and Adam Strange were fugitives. With only two issues left to go in the series, things weren’t looking good for our heroes. So on to Issue No. 5…
Rating system: Ratings are out of Five Maces; that’s the most you can get!
The Team: Marc Andreyko (writer), Aaron Lopresti and Rodney Buchemi (penciller), John Livesay (Inker), Blond (colorist), John Reed (letterer), and Aaron Lopresti and Brad Anderson (cover art)
The Main Cover
This was the biggest disappointment of the issue. On the cover, it shows Hawkwoman standing over a defeated Hawkman with Alanna standing over Adam Strange in the back. When this cover came out a few weeks ago, fans were thrilled that Hawkwoman would make a comeback. Finally! Even the description of the issue on DC Comics’ homepage described it as Hawkwoman leading the Thanagarians to defeat Hawkman. A day before the issue came out, writer Marc Andreyko told me that she was not in the issue, due to last minute changes. So the cover was completely false advertising, made worse by DC Comics’ own description of the issue. Very lame and totally took any joy out of the cover, despite Aaron Lopresti’s efforts.
1 out of 5 Maces
Aaron Lopresti continues to share the pencils with Rodney Buchemi but you can hardly notice the change when you are reading the comic. They do a great job together. Livesay compliments their work well and I love the color by Blond. It’s a great comic book look. The only downside is the helmet of Hawkman. It seems to be getting more and more rigid and unHawk-like by the issue. More wing-like would have been a plus.
3 out of 5 Maces
Before we get into the story, a word about the Then and Now flipflopping around. Fhe first two issues, this style was OK, but after five issues, I’m starting to think even the writer is getting confused with the order of events. We keep waiting for the present to catch up to the past, but it still hasn’t and I now feel like I’m watching Christopher Nolan’s Momento.
Rann Now: We start off with Adam Strange getting his uniform repaired by Isamot Kol, the Green Lantern of Thanagar. But hold on! It’s his old uniform without the white leggings! Much better. Hawkman for some reason is bleeding from the nose when suddenly Despero attacks. Strange, Hawkman and Hawkman’s Thanagarian police partner Rayn Kral make a run for it while Kol tries to hold Despero off but gets blasted. It’s pretty obvious that Despero in his Nth metal suit is much more powerful than a Green Lantern at this point.
Inside Thanagar’s Orbit Then: OK, here we slip back in time again. Thanagar’s moon has just been blasted and our heroes are flying through the debris and bodies. Green Lanterns Isamot Kol and Rann’s Varth Sarn show up and tell Hawkman and Strange to leave since there is a bounty on their head. Strange contacts Alanna but now we know that Despero is controlling her and she orders the Ranns to destroy their ship. Our heroes expected that move and fly out before their ship is hit. And oh look! Hawkman has his funky Justice League Action suit on again for whatever reason. As soon as they fly down to Rann, he changes back into his usual look. Despero takes over the minds of the Rannians and the people attack. Hawkman is blasted and missiles start to come down all around them.
Rann Now: By this time I’m not sure what planet and when we are any more but does it matter? We’re back in a cave with our heroes right after Isamot Kol was blasted. A Green Lantern ring comes flying in, looking for a bearer, meaning Kol is dead. The ring flies onto the hand of Rayn Kral, instantly making him a Green Lantern. For a split second I thought it had chosen Hawkman but Kral is now a Green Lantern. This was pretty cool, although I mourned for Kol. Strange contacts the Justice League on Earth but Despero completely controls that conversation with Cyborg and no help is coming. Suddenly, Despero comes up out of the ground and it appears that the Nth metal that Hawkman has is literally shooting out of his body. Hawkman crumbles in pain to end issue No. 5.
Rayn Kral becomes a Green Lantern and looks pretty cool.
Every panel that jumped back or ahead in time. Not fun anymore.
Isamot Kol when Adam Strange complains about his uniform being the old one: “It’s what we have in the Lantern database. Make it work.”
Adam Strange after escaping the space ship before it is destroyed: “Cough. Cough. Wow. That was fun. Let’s never do it again.”
Adam Strange: Man of Space Action is pretty wimpy this series.
Summary and Verdict of Issue No. 5:
The issue did have some moments with Varth Sarn showing up and Rayn Kral becoming a Green Lantern. But overall the story has become very disjointed. Flipping back and forth between the present and the past has become old and with the different scenes and planets and times, it’s starting to be a chore to read through it. I found myself flipping back a couple times to remember where I was and what I was doing before we flipped back last. Too bad this pattern lasted the whole series. A couple of issues would have been enough. With only one issue remaining, it feels that the last issue is going to be very rushed and anticlimactic. It seems that the story of a six-issue series would be set before they start writing and drawing, but with Andreyko talking about a change after Lopresti finished the cover for issue No. 5 does not instill confidence in the direction DC Comics is taking Hawkman. Andreyko said in an interview in October that this series would lead to the next adventures for our heroes. Strange already is set for a series starting in a couple months but there is nothing about Hawkman. I guess we will see what happens to him at the end of issue No. 6 and if DC Comics takes their time in getting around to his next adventure. Whether that is in a few months or in a few years is anyone’s guess. Hopefully this issue was the depressing dip before the mountain top glory the last issue will give us.
Verdict: 2 out of 5 Maces
Issue 6 will come out March 6th. Stay tuned for the fate of Hawkman and company!
Tags: Adam Strange, DC Comics, Death of Hawkman, Hawkman, Rebirth