The final issues of Hawkeye are collected here, which is a sad thing, but also exciting since it means we’ll get a satisfying conclusion. At least we hope! The last collection was nearly perfect, so I have high hopes, plus it includes Steve Barton Hawkeye which can only further complicate Kate’s life.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
Can Los Angeles really handle two Hawkeyes? Just as Kate Bishop reaches out to ask for Clint Barton’s help with finding her dead mother, the senior bowman shows up needing help of his own! An unknown party is gunning for him — and their attack kicks off a wild chase across the City of Angels! Hawkeye and Hawkeye must try their hardest to stay one step ahead — but who has Clint and Kate in their sights, and what is their sinister agenda? And could they find an ally in Madame Masque? The Hawkeyes are reunited, and it feels so good — if you don’t count the two deadly enemies and crew of misfit villains out for their blood! Plus: Kate shares an intergenerational adventure with a younger Clint in the Vanishing Point!
Why does this matter?
Kelly Thompson has been writing lights-out dialogue for this series, which reveals the characters and their quirks. It also keeps the pace going, and is some of the best Hawkeye action you’ll get all year.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This collection opens with Generations: Hawkeye & Hawkeye #1, which was one of the post Secret Empire one-shot comics. This is a nice opener as it highlights the kinship Kate and Steve have for each other even when Kate is sent back in time and Steve doesn’t know who she is yet. Surprisingly, this story ties directly into the final arc of the series, bringing in a character that I was unaware of (maybe she’s new?). This is the only “Generations” one-shot that has done this that I’m aware of, and it works nicely to bring the relationship of two characters closer.
The main story is very good at capturing the somewhat spacy nature of Steve and the always planning Kate. It’s like they’re inside each other’s heads and that makes them fun to read when they’re dodging bullets and attempting to prevent villain team ups. Like with many good finales, this issue brings in previous characters–like Madame Masque–and story elements–like Kate remembering her mother–for full effect. It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise then that Thompson adds to the story she’s been crafting for 16 issues here even if it’s the end. It’s a nice promise of sorts that we’ll get more adventures from Kate soon.
The art by Stefano Raffaele in the “Generations” story has a nice classic superhero feel that suits the timeline jump. It also does well with repetition to help show the passage of time and the bonding going on. Leonardo Romero’s style is quite good with an almost Chris Samnee look to it with a thicker line and expressive faces when necessary. Jordie Bellarie’s colors (is she the hardest working colorist in the business or what?) do well to craft a cool realistic look so that the purples pop.
It can’t be perfect can it?
After a while it almost get boring to see Kate and Steve think up plans on the fly. I know it’s their schtick, but it also means they pinball around, almost never letting up on new places to run or new things to run from. The pace slows a bit here and there, but for the most part this finale races to the end when it could use some slower bits to let the characters breathe.
Is it good?
An ending that’ll make you even sadder to see it go. Kelly Thompson has proven herself and then some on this series, and carved out a section of the Marvel universe that fans will remember, and want more of, for quite some time.
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