Hawkman #21 – Robert Venditti, Writer; Fernando Pasarin, Penciller; Oclair Albert, Wade Von Grawbadger, Inkers; Jeromy Cox, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
Ray: Robert Venditti has been one of DC’s best “utility writers” for a long time – jumping on and off titles as needed and delivering entertaining stories in the context of larger events. While his run on Hawkman has largely been defined by the mythology he invented involving the Deathbringers and Carter’s true mission, he’s used the Batman Who Laughs’ attack on the DCU to expand and enhance that.
Sky Tyrant, Carter’s evil alter-ego, has been unleashed again thanks to the toxin and is aiming to kill enough people that he essentially makes himself immortal by renewing the reincarnation cycle. That’s led Hawkman – and his pursuers, former friends Hawkwoman, Adam Strange, and Ray Palmer – to a planet protected by a race of giants who pattern themselves after the ancient Titan Hawk. I find it amusing that not only did Hawkman apparently have a microscopic version, he had a giant version. Very Gulliver’s Travels.
The bulk of Hawkman #21 is one of the more entertaining fights of the run, with Sky Tyrant doing battle with the massive mace-bearing guardian. It seems like a mismatch, but it has a lot in common with you or I trying to fight a hornet outside on a summer day.
Sky Tyrant essentially takes his enemy down piece by piece as he tries to fight his way inside to gain the mysterious key. As Carter’s allies race to get there first, they discover the true power of the key – and how it could play into Sky Tyrant’s master plan. Hawkman #21 is one of the most fast-paced issues of the series in a while, and one of the best since Bryan Hitch’s initial run ended. As the issue ends with Sky Tyrant seemingly neutralized, the battle shifts to saving Carter from himself. Could we be heading for another Fantastic Voyage as Atom gets up close and personal with his old friend? Can’t wait to find out.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.