So, what was the verdict of Brightest Day?
It was alright.
I wish that Frank had not beat me to it when it came to this post, because a lot of the sentiments he expresses are the same as mine. I think I have a better overall opinion of Brightest Day than he does, but I think our respective blogs have shown that I tend to be easier to entertain and more or less go with the flow if I am digging a story.
The nature of the book made it like reading an anthology. And luckily enough for me I enjoyed most of the "features" of that anthology. The Hawks' story was what I would have imagined would have gone down in Hawkman if Shiera had been resurrected in that book. I liked the mix of the modernist with the Silver Age throwback-y stuff and thought it was a good demonstration of what Frank called the Hawks "run[ning] around killing stuff to death with extreme prejudice." The dynamic I referred to early on -- that Hawkman's rage could be calmed and leveled by Hawkgirl -- might be cliche but it's also beautiful. The other leads were pretty solid in my book too. I don't have the history with Manhunter nor Firestorm to be overly concerned with the sweeping changes, and Aquaman, well, Aquaman brought it pretty hard.
That the entire book was ultimately a springboard to bring in Swamp Thing and John Constatine to the DCU proper kind of falls on deaf ears for me. Never been overly interested in Swamp Thing despite my love of monster and monster heroes. Just have not really read much of it and the Moore stuff, I feel, went a little too far into the hardcore fantasy stuff -- certainly moreso than I want to see in a monster book. I will say, to give credit where it is due, if Swamp Thing becomes a violent ecological avenger, at least he'd be back to acting like a monster.
So, solo Hawkman. Hrrn. Outlook not good. I bought in hard and fast to the new Hawkcouple at the end of Blackest Night to be super excited about a solo Hawkman as an ongoing character. I liked him sans Hawkgirl during the Jim Starlin stuff, but he was part of a larger ensemble with the rest of Abberant Six. And we all know how that ended up anyway. But on his own on Earth? When he is this angry? I don't think so. That's going to get awfully one note real fast.
In the end: I dug Brightest Day. Looking forward to rereading the series. But how the end impacted the Hawks: Bleah.