Reviews and Recommendations by Mel Odom, Professional Writer

HAWKEYE: MY LIFE AS A WEAPON by Matt Fraction, David Aja, and Javier Pulido

Hawkeye My Life As A Weapon cover

Matt Fraction has revealed yet another facet of iconic hero, Hawkeye: Clint Barton’s days NOT wearing the purple costume. However, even though these stories are not focused on supervillains, more or less, they still feature a lot of action and character development.

The first issue gathered in this graphic novel has already been reviewed in this blog, and it really sets the tone for the rest of the book. Clint’s life, whether as heroic Avenger or just a guy down the block, isn’t for the faint of heart. Trouble follows Hawkeye no matter where he goes. If it’s not the Russians who first owned the building where he lives, then it a mystery girl named Penny who gets him involved in a run-and-gun shootout on the street that eventually involves Clint’s more-or-less apprentice, Kate Bishop, the Hawkeye of the Young Avengers.

Hawkeye My Life As A Weapon 01

I love the storytelling in this graphic novel. It’s down-to-earth and exciting at the same time. Clint Barton really jumps out at the everyman hero that he’s pretty much always been, but in ways I’d never before considered. I like seeing this part of him, the way he gets along with his neighbors, who don’t really think anything of him being a superhero, and the struggles he has while sorting out his mentorship of Kate.

I also like the fact that Fraction has developed his secondary characters deeply enough that they become a part of the overall stories. The Russian gangsters do appear again, and Penny turns up in the next graphic novel.

Hawkeye My Life As A Weapon 02

But one of the best things that sets this book apart from the rest of the comics now being published is the art. David Aja’s minimalist artwork and almost monotone colors really put the sequential structure in the panels. He doesn’t seem to mind drawing a dozen or more tiny panels on the page for Fraction’s dialogue to fit in a breezy back-and-forth manner that makes for such easy reading. Javier Pulido follows Aja’s opening act with similar style and I hardly noticed the artists had changed, which is something that seldom happens for me.

Hawkeye My Life As A Weapon 03

Fraction’s plots are interesting. Even when they’re simple, like the opening act of the book, there are a lot of layers, a lot of back-and-forth storytelling that careens from the present to the past to the present again, and you have to stay on your toes to catch it all. The story could have been easily told from beginning to end, but I like the fact that the structure bounces around. It’s almost like Clint is sitting there telling you the story over a cup of coffee at the corner diner.

I’m really looking forward to subsequent volumes in the series. If you haven’t picked this one up, you should.

One Response to “HAWKEYE: MY LIFE AS A WEAPON by Matt Fraction, David Aja, and Javier Pulido”

  1. It’s a great series . . . so of course Marvel is cancelling it, like Waid’s DAREDEVIL.

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