December 5, 2012

Review: Hawkeye Issue 5

Will our heroes Clint Barton and Kate Bishop escape Madripoor unscathed from the clutches of evil? What is the story behind the videotape? 

Hawkeye issue 5 concludes the "Operation Eucritta" storyline involving a mysterious videotape, almost falling in the hands of the criminal underworld. Previously in issue 4, a scene from the illicit tape depicts Barton killing someone in cold blood. Sent by S.H.I.E.L.D. to retrieve the tape, Barton discovers more than he bargained for when the tape is auctioned off amongst evil heavyweights such as The Kingpin, HYDRA, A.I.M. and more, with the winner being Madame Masque. Or so we are lead to believe! I won't spoil issue 4's conclusion and it's buildup for issue 5 but it's a must read!

Writer Matt Fraction and artist Javier Pulido finish this storyline with the same excitement from the previous issue. Fraction places Barton in the most difficult of situations but gives him the most unimaginable way out of it! Barton must have a guardian angel because some scenes in issue 5 places him in certain death. There are definitely some "gotcha' moments" here, giving readers a sighs of relief throughout the perilous situations for both Barton and Bishop. Although one particular scene seemed just to outrageous for both protagonists to fight through! The dialogue is filled with the same Barton wit and certainly shows his character, even aiding someone who just moments ago, wanted to kill him! This is what makes Hawkeye fun and enjoyable, an everyday normal hero who sometimes...just wants to take a nap! Be prepared for another epic conclusion that will stun readers once again!

Pulido's artwork continues to be impressive as well. Simple lines define Pulido's style and it remains wonderful here. Some scenes are definitely aided by the equally good lettering for the sound effects. Perhaps Fraction added some of that Howard Chaykin/Blackhawk influence in some of the scenes. Though lacking that intricate panel style established by artist David Aja in issue 2, Pulido simple yet striking style works it magic on these pages again. Kate Bishop's facial expressions are wonderfully captured by Pulido making us wonder, who was his muse?

Final Verdict: A

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