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    Review: The Savage Hawkman #1

    By | September 30th, 2011
    Posted in Reviews | % Comments

    Written by Tony Daniel
    Illustrated by Philip Tan

    Carter Hall’s skill at deciphering lost languages has led him to a job with an archaeologist who specializes in alien ruins — but will the doctor’s latest discovery spread an alien plague through New York City? No matter the personal cost, Carter Hall must don his wings and become the new, savage Hawkman to survive! Witness the start of a new action series from writer Tony S. Daniel and artist Philip Tan that will take Hawkman where no hero has flown before!

    Hawkman #1 soared into stores this week and I’m here to provide you my two or three cents regarding it. As a fan of Hawkman, I must say I am approaching this book as open as possible to a new or even familiar take, but really, I just want to see a good take!

    One of my wishes at the beginning of the year was that DC give us a new Hawkman book, so does the book deliver? Hit the jump to find out!

    As far as first issues go, this was a decent introduction albeit slightly confusing for new readers. It suffers from the same problem many of the DCnU books, that this isn’t a ground zero restart, with hints at past events involving Carter being Hawkman. While this is a great thing for those fans dying to cling to a continuity that is now different and irrelevant anyway, it hurts new readers who may think they’ve been left out of something. It just seems to do the book a disservice to not start fresh and give us the origin as the intro arc. It didn’t, though, and that hurts its the accessibility.

    On the writing end of things we have Tony Daniel. Tony Daniel is known more for his art than his writing, so while he has some experience he hasn’t quite solidified himself as a writer/artist. If you were a fan of Battle For the Cowl like I was, then you know he’s got the chops to do so, and I think he reinforced this notion with the first issue of this book. Daniel’s story is solid, but some of the dialogue is awkward. This is never more evident than when Hawkman challenges his would be enemies with the line, “You want a piece of this?! Come and get it!” It’s a line that comes across as cliché and almost too jovial for the Carter Hall we’re given in this issue’s other scenes. Despite that, Daniel provides a good building block with the story he tells here, and I am more than certain his dialogue will catch up in no time.

    Also, the name Morphicius is awful. I actually got a good belly laugh when I read the name. I am certain this was not the reaction that the creators were looking for. All the same, it’s what they got.

    On art we have Philip Tan. Tan is a talent whose work I have enjoyed in the past, and aside from the terrible costume design I really liked his work here as well. It was different from what I am used to, but in a most excellent way. It had a perfect feel for the story and Tan’s character work was especially well rendered. I really enjoyed the last page with the villain triumphant; the villain looks evil and all looks lost. It’s a good (albeit unoriginal) ending to the story, but it looks really nice.

    Lastly, I want to mention Sunny Gho quickly. I don’t know a lot about coloring but I do know his coloring here was spot on perfect with Tan’s art. It was extremely complimentary and actually helped to keep me from hating the costume too much.

    I’ll buy the next issue of this book because,as a Hawkman fan, this was anything but awful. The story is good and the art is better. If you don’t love Hawkman there might be better options available to you, but I believe this is worth at least a read through.

    Final Verdict: 7.0 Buy It!

    David Harper

    David Harper mainly focuses on original content, interviews, co-hosting our 4 Color News and Brews video podcast, and being half of the Mignolaversity and Valiant (Re)visions team. He runs Multiversity's Twitter and Facebook pages, and personally tweets (rarely) @slicedfriedgold. By day, he works in an ad agency in Anchorage, Alaska, and he loves his wife, traveling and biscuits & gravy (ordered most to least, which is still a lot).