Issue: Hawkman v.4:no.11 (reprinted in Hawkman v.2: Allies & Enemies) Title: "Everlasting Love...?" Published Date: Mar 2003 Generation: Modern Carter Retcon Status: In Continuity
Summary: In the Himalayas, Hawkman, Hawkgirl, Speed Saunders, Jayita Sahir and Danny Evans are the prisoners of Helene Astor and her devoted, Darkraven. Helene informs her captors that she is, of course, the reincarnation of Hath-Set, and that Darkraven is the reincarnation of her lover, just like the Hawks. She plans to use a strange alien device to permanantly kill the Hawks' souls and end the reincarnation cycle. Hawkman immediately recognizes the device as a Thanagarian Absorbascon!
Having heard enough, Hawkman stops the planned execution by letting slip his secret ally: The Atom! The Tiny Titan was hanging around the whole time, but they had to wait until the plan was revealed to make their move. Atom frees the Hawks and the other prisoners, and a big battle ensues, with Hawkgirl going directly after Helene. In the fracas, the Absorbascon is hit by an errant shot and apparently damaged. Trying to grab her alien device, Helene is turned to solid stone the moment she touches it! Horrified, Darkraven rushes to his love's side, but as soon as he touches her, he too undergoes a change -- into a seven foot tall humanoid raven!
Review: This issue is mostly a catch-up/fill-in type, as we learn a little bit about Helene Astor and get some Thanagarian technology thrown in for good mix. Atom popping up at the end reminded me of the early parts of the first volume of Heroes for Hire, where Ant-Man was with the team on every mission, but no one was aware of it. I'm not sure why the Absorbascon did the things it does in this issue, but hey, it's an Absorbason... it can do anything! Darkraven's transformation results in something which would not look out of place in a sentai episode -- I like sentai, but not everyone does, obviously. There is a pretty big jump from the cliffhanger last time (dying in the snow) to now, which is okay except that Hawkgirl's injury seems to have healed pretty quickly. Gotta love that Nth metal! An alright issue, but clearly expositionary and setting up the big blowoff.