Review of All-New Hawkeye #2

AllNewHawkeyeBy Jeff Lemire, Ramon Perez and Ian Herring

All-New Hawkeye is one of those Marvel books which reset it’s numbering after the Secret Wars event. Prior to the renumbering, Ramon Perez was displaying his versatility on this title. The story was focused on Clint and Kate’s relationship with a number of flashbacks to Clint as a child. The art difference between the past and the present pages was astounding. While the art for the present aped a David Aja style, the past was a more flowing dream like sequence. Paired with Jeff Lemire’s ability to channel emotions, these flashbacks proved to be quite powerful moments in the comic. Flash forward to the renumbering. Lemire and Perez are at it again. This time with flashes 30 years into the future. Kate and Clint have had a falling out. In the present we witness the falling out, but in the future they are forced to come together for another mission. They have to tie up a loose end that was the very same thing which tore them apart, 30 years later, it could bring them back together.

It’s clear in the future that Clint is not doing so well. This was evident in the first issue but in issue #2 we start to see his physical and emotional decline.  In the present we have a fantastic two page progression of cuts between Clint in his apartment and Clint chasing bad guys. His apartment is a mess but not in an obviously over the top way. It is messy in a very subtle lived in way. Some clothes have made it into the hamper but some have not. Books are sitting on the bookshelf but are placed in difference orientations. It looks very much like a bachelor pad. As the scene cuts back and forth between Clint in his apartment and Clint in action, his apartment panels remain almost identical. Clint sitting at his desk eating supper. It is clear that each time we see this panel, time has passed. Clint is looking a little more filled out, with a little bit more facial hair and a lot more beers on his counter. After we witness the depressing few pages of Clint’s decline he picks up the phone to call Kate. Unfortunately Kate has had it with Clint and she refuses to pick up. Later we see Kate meeting up with Ms America Chavez, where she screens Clint’s call and decides to go dancing. This scene is heartbreaking. We know what is happening to Clint and we know that this is the point where his life starts to go downhill. It is like watching Friday Night Lights for a second time. You know they are going to lose the state final, but you still watch with hope in your heart, maybe they will do something different this time and win. Kate doesn’t answer the call and Clint drinks another beer.

Ramon Perez is doing something very similar on this run of Hawkeye as he did on the previous one. When we shift to the future scenes he changes his art style to be far more rough, it’s nothing like the art in the present or even the art style he was using for the past. The scratchy art makes the scenes almost feel a little fabricated. The pencil lines are very clearly seen. This rough art style creates the illusion that these scenes are not set in stone, these scenes are just drafts. Maybe if Clint and Kate can make the right change in the present they can rewrite the future. This illustrations gives a sense of hope. I am still rooting for Clint and Kate to work things out in the present.

All-New Hawkeye is one of the best Marvel books right now. Lemire and Perez are actually the perfect pair. Lemire’s emotional character work mixed with Perez’s beautiful illustrations makes this a power and at sometimes depressing comic book.

  • Dean

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