Having been a fan of Hawkeye since the 1990s in such titles as West Coast Avengers and Solo Avengers, the launch of his solo series certainly caught my attention. With the wonderful story in issue 1 showcasing Clint Barton helping out his fellow neighbors and the equally amazing effort in issue 2, the series was off to a great start. Furthermore, the second issue of the series featured a hive of Marvel's vilest villains with our dynamic duo of Kate Bishop and Barton, taking them head on. The stunning panel work by Aja leaves one breathless with each turn of the page. Could anything derail the hot start of the series so far?
Unfortunately, the answer is yes. [SLIGHT SPOILERS AHEAD]
There's no question action fans will truly enjoy Hawkeye issue 3 with it's frenetic pace between scenes. One minute Clint Barton is looking for labels for his variety of arrows, the next he's protecting the life of some woman he just met off the street. Fraction doesn't offer much in the way of explanations for the mysterious woman, Barton hooks up and instead leaves it up to the action to drive the story. My other gripe is the portrayal of Barton and his sexual encounter with the woman. It leaves the reader with a shallow depiction of Hawkeye, who casually beds women he just met off the street. Additionally it makes Barton seem nothing like the good Samaritan-type we saw back in the debut issue but someone so hollow. Add to that, the scenes where Barton brags about how quickly he can get the cash to buy the car from her. It's a whole different side to Barton than we've seen so far and just seems so regressive and "caveman-ish" for him. Aja's work is quite stunning again but doesn't match the brilliant and even intricate panel work featured in issue 2.
Final Verdict: C
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