Hawkman Special

Hawkman SpecialRann-Thanagar Holy War isn’t even an “event” mini-series. So how come its managed to spawn a tie-in one-shot?

Well, according to an interview with writer Jim Starlin, DC had decided that Hawkman as a character is broken and needed fixed. Now, I’m not a big Hawkman fan. He’s not a character I’m bothered about, but I’ve enjoyed his use in the Rann-Thanagar stuff as someone with ties to Thanagar who can see the bigger picture.

I know the basics of his origin as well. I know how Zero Hour had completely muddled his character and left him a confused mess until Geoff Johns sorted it all out in the JSA series, explaining that he’s the reincarnation of an Egyptian Pharaoh, with the memories of Katar Hol, a Thanagarian and the Silver Age Hawkman, due to the properties of the Nth metal used in Thanagarian technology (at least, I think that’s right). My perception of the character had been that Geoff Johns had pretty much managed to make the character usable again, so the announcement that he was again needing “fixed” struck me as odd.

Curiousity got the better of me. I’m not a big fan of tie-ins to non-event series. If I’m picking up an 8 issue mini, I expect to pick up 8 issues. But still, it was a quiet week, and I’ve enjoyed what Starlin’s been doing with Mystery in Space, and Rann-Thanagar Holy War.

Thank God I’m not a Hawkman fan. As I said above, I’m no expert, but it seems to me that this special has accomplished the exact opposite of “fixing” the character. All the Egyptian stuff was fake? The Nameless is calling him Katar Hol? Going by the reference to the multiverse, I can’t help but presume that this current Hawkman is going to be revealed as Katar Hol, with the Golden Age Carter Hall being worked back in as a separate character. However I can’t help but wonder that if they are planning on separating the two, then perhaps doing it the other way round would’ve made more sense. Leave this Carter Hall as the reincarnated Pharaoh, and bring back in Katar Hol through another route.

Needless to say, going from some of the online reaction I’ve read, Hawkman fans are up in arms. For myself, I enjoyed the story on its own merits, but even I could see that it was going to damage the character rather than help him.

The only hope I can take out of the story for Hawkman fans is that the Nameless is a guy with skulls for knee-pads. A sure-fire sign of evilness. Maybe its going to be revealed as him messing with Hawkman to try and take him out of the fight?

4 thoughts on “Hawkman Special

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  1. Considering how much more epic being a reincarnated Egyptian warrior makes the character I would have thought they’d go with that, espeically since it’s kind of required for the family relations he has and you could always make small nods to prior history with the Shazam family. =/

    I can’t say I’m a major fan of the character, but I liked him enough in JSA and I think it’d be a shame to lose that complicated part of the character. It sounds like what they consider needing to be fixed is purely the character’s long history, and that is wrong. This convulsed, completely confusing (how many more ‘C’s can I get in there? x]) history only deepens the character, as he can comment, as many do, how long and tiring his life has been, only, he’ll have more of a right to say it.

    Of course, what with the multiversal barriers breaking down due to another cataclysmic crisis and all, it’s entirely possible that all of this Hawkman revision is due to influences from yet ANOTHER alternate reality.

    That’s right.

    He’s a Skrull.

    xD

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  2. One of the main complaints people seem to be making actually involves the Marvel family. In that Black Adam specifically remembers Hawkman from ancient Egypt. So this latest revision in his history would definitely seem to really muck things up, unless there’s a twist coming up.

    I completely agree with you regarding Hawkman’s reincarnation history being key to the character’s appeal. If they’re turning him into just another space cop, then he’ll end up fading into the background amongst the other Sci-Fi heroes that are enjoying a resurgence at the moment.

    If they needed a space cop Thanagarian I’d have rather they resurrected Hawkwoman. It seemed strange to kill her off in Rann-Thanagar War after being such a popular character in the JL cartoon.

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  3. I’m not sure how an ancient Egyptian is “more epic” than a character with the entire galaxy as a backdrop…as for the Black Adam pickle, well…remember that pre-Crisis neither Adam nor Carter Hall were part of the “main” DC universe. Post-Crisis, various characters from other worlds were folded into the New Earth history. The current Crisis will apparently undo this, meaning that the Silver Age Katar Hol will most likely once again be the Hawkman of Earth-1 (and apparently always was), while Carter may very well turn up on Earth-2. The Capt. I’m not sure where that would leave Adam (or any of the Marvel famuly) as they also were from a separate Earth as well (Earth-S, I think). Personally I’m stoked to have Katar back, and would love to see the real Carter pop up with the JSA on Earth-2.

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  4. For me, I don’t particularly think the ancient Egyptian angle is more epic, just that in the current DCU it stands out more. With the GLCorps now operating more as space cops (and portrayed as such in terms of their inner workings), and the likes of Adam Strange and Captain Comet enjoying more focus, I think DC have the intergalactic hero angle pretty well covered.

    Assuming this doesn’t turn out to be a fake out, I agree that this seems to be leading to the idea that our Hawkman has been Katar Hol the whole time, and Carter Hall is still out their somewhere (and in the meantime, Katar had picked up Carter’s memories, sort of the reverse of what we’d been told).

    Thinking about it, this doesn’t necessarily create the continuity problems people online are worried about. If Katar was resurrected on Thanagar with access to a copy of Carter’s memories, then Black Adam remembering him and the time travel story still holds. Its just that the Hawkman we thought was the reincarnation, wasn’t, and there’s another one still out there waiting to be found.

    In fact, given that “Carter” and Kendra never quite clicked as the ill-fated lovers destined to be together, you could chock this up to the fact that it wasn’t actually Carter.

    Another bonus would be that the current Hawkman would also have even stronger ties to Thanagar if he was actually from there, which would add a bit more depth to his actions during the Rann-Thanagar War.

    Of course, as I’ve said before, I’m not a huge fan of the character. I’m basing most of this guesswork on stuff I’ve read online 🙂

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