Four Letter Nerd

4LN Comic Review: Hawkeye #22

Series: Hawkeye
Writer: Matt Fraction
Art: David Aja
Inks: Matt Hollingsworth

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Summary from Comixology: “Hawkeyes vs. Tracksuits. Final Round!”

Overview:
If you ever read my reviews, you will surly know how much I love Matt Fraction, and how special this comic was to me. I never read a Marvel book before the Marvel Now “relaunch,” well never religiously. For the longest time, I was a DC only comic book reader. This was the first Marvel book I ever fell in love with, so I hold it close to my comic book heart. Cameron and Stephen both swear the greatest Marvel title of all time is Thor: God of Thunder by Jason Aaron and Esad Ribic, but I have to politely disagree with them. I think Fraction’s Hawkeye is the greatest Marvel book, at least within the last 5 years. The only downside to this title was the TERRIBLE release schedule/constant delays. Hawkeye #21 came out in February, so #22 is only five months behind schedule. But the series is over now, and it had one of the greatest endings I could ask for.

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This is NOT a starting place for fans of Hawkeye. If you haven’t read any previous issues, then skip this book, or wait for the trade, or even the omnibus (I’m getting the omnibus, no one tell my girlfriend how much it costs). Everything that has been building up in the last 21 issues finally comes to a head in issue 22. Hawkeye (Clint) fights those damn Russian tracksuit vampires, and Hawkeye (Kate) makes her triumphant return from the west coast. This issue seriously has everything you could possible want: action, heartbreak, twists, turns, and shocking outcomes. This has always been a comic about what Hawkeye does with his time off, what he’s doing when he’s not saving the wold with The Avengers. And, when he’s not saving the world, he’s trying to save an apartment building. Clint’s not a good guy, but he does his damnedest to be a good guy. This series was about being down on your luck, getting back up after being knocked down, and fighting for what you believe, “Don’t stop fighting, boy.”

This is the end of Fraction’s Hawkeye. And if you haven’t read it, please do yourself a favor and try to collect all the issues, or trades, and experience one of the best comics in recent years. Matt Fraction and David Aja were a great team. David Aja’s minimalist art style really brought so much detail to the story, in a truly unique way. Fraction’s ability of being able to focus on Clint’s lack of hearing made the read feel very cinematic, this didn’t feel like reading a comic, but rather like watching an epic film ending. Matt Hollingsworth is truly one of my favorite inkers in the business (Wytches, The Wake, We Stand United), everything he does colors for pops off the page, and you can truly tell it’s his work upon first look. Its not often that my heart can skip beats while reading a comic, but this happened multiple times while reading Haweye #22.

With all this being said, I want to say a “thank you,” to Matt Fraction, David Aja, and Stephen Andrew. First, thanks for giving me the first 6 issues of Hawkeye, Stephen. I mentioned wanting to read it and he gave me the issues, and this was before we were close friends and before the blog. (Editor’s Note: Aww shucks… you’re welcome pal. – SA)

Next I want to thank Fraction and Aja for writing one of my all time favorite comics. I bitched endlessly about the release dates always changing, but in the end, you guys delivered on an amazing issue, and an epic conclusion to Hawkeye. Bro, this series will always be a very special thing for me, so thank you for making a comic that connected so strongly with me, thanks bros. “Perfection” and “masterpiece” are the only words I think will accurately describe this issue, along with this series.

Music Pairing:
For this issue, I can’t recommend Ryan Adams enough. Specifically the song My Wrecking Ball off his self titled album that came out last year. Hawkeye seems to be a wrecking ball that causes destruction to everything around him, and this issue is no exception to that.

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Bill Clark

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