COMIC BOOK REVIEW - Hawkeye: Masks
By The Masked Medic
Maybe I’ve been focusing on my TV shows and films for a while, but I can’t lose the essence of this website can I? Occasionally I’ve got to write a comic book review, and would you believe me that I’m writing this one on a train to Brussels? Sounds like that could be an issue of my own life comic, but you guys aren’t ready for that. So for now, I’ll stick to DC and Marvel. I wanted to return to a series that I thought was fairly lowkey and my mind instantly went to one series; Hawkeye!
‘Masks’ has Kate Bishop, aka Hawkeye, decide to start looking into the disappearance of her mother who went missing when Kate was a kid. We get a couple of flashback scenes that see Kate reminisce on her childhood and slowly she begins to ask herself if her father was involved in the whole thing. Cut to modern-day and Kate’s had an invite from Madam Masque to meet her. Naturally, it’s a trap, but once Kate makes it past the multitude of armed guards, she finds herself face to face with her father. It turns out that he’s been behind everything that has been happening to Kate and her friends and more importantly, he doesn’t look like he’s aged a day. As it so happens, her father has been working with Madame Masque to acquire the ability to create clones. Kate tells him that Masque will undoubtedly betray him, but he reveals that he has acquired superpowers which were apparently always in his genes, leaving Kate to wonder if she too has acquired powers. The second story sees her helping a young girl rescue her father from a brutal underground fight club. This puts her back in the crosshairs of Madame Masque who now understands how to create a better clone than we’ve seen her do in the previous novels. She creates a clone of Kate and then goes hijacks her life, making extremely bad decisions, and meanwhile, Kate is locked in an underground prison, having to watch the entire thing. This clearly doesn’t bode well with her and she comes up with a plan to get out and get her life back. But can she stop a villain like Masque? And just what is going on with these flashbacks?
So in Brussels, I met my good friend Hamza, aka Characters Of DC, go give him a follow on Instagram people. Anyways, I was discussing with him how I found that the stakes are never high in Marvel novels. At least the majority of them. And the ones which have big stakes, I find that I don’t enjoy as much. This series, however, is not one of them. Kate is starting to go up against bigger bad guys which I appreciate and I think she’s hilariously funny which makes the novel a lot easier to read. I do feel like sometimes her actual skill is downplayed in the quips, but it’s not to the point of other characters like Deadpool and Harley Quinn. The ending of this novel definitely led to a moment that I think will improve the series going forward, but it is already a pretty decent one!
The artwork for this novel looked so basic but it worked so well. I thought Kate’s expressions were drawn beautifully, and the style was akin to some of those old Tintin and Smurfs comics. You see all these Belgian references? That’s how you write a good review. I don’t know who I’m @-ing there. Forget that, go read this novel, it’s a good one!
There were too many panels to choose from, honestly, but the pop reference in this one was awesome!
Um… Kate. Obviously. She’s got everything that I love to see in heroes. Skills and jokes. That’s it.
Story Arc: ★★★
Character Development: ★★★½