Thursday, December 30, 2010

The Atom & Hawkman Heroclix Miniature

In honor of my finally getting Showcase Presents Hawkman v.2, which has the complete run of Hawkman stories from The Atom & Hawkman, I decided to bust this image out.

I have played a few games of Heroclix.  My brother bought the original Marvel starter box and we played it a couple of times, but I have never been big on collectable miniatures games with blind boxes.  (Case in point, I didn't buy into the insanely awesome Monsterpocalypse until the boys at Team Covenant created their Army Pack.  But I digress.)   But being made of plastic has allowed the Heroclix folks to create a large variety of figures for the game, including this very nifty little piece.  Atom is hard to see in this picture, but the juxtaposition of the little guy with the beefy dude really looks great.  That's classic Silver Age heroics right there.  I wonder if this dial is for both of the heroes together, or just for Hawkman?  Anyone out there know?

The only thing which would have made this mini better was if Atom was standing on his shoulder instead.

Image: The Atom & Hawkman Heroclix, image obtained from eBay.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Waiting In The Wings -- 12/29/2010

What sort of Hawkstuff can we expect to find at our local comic shop today (or tomorrow, possibly)?  Let's have a look and see.

JLA / The 99 #3 -- Hawkman rates the cover, so he must have some role in this issue of the crossover which has pretty much flown under the radar since it's initial announcement.  I am chalking this up to two factors: 1) Hanging out with the Justice League is not the rub it used to be, and 2) The 99 have a long way to go insofar as making an impact into the consciousness of the American comic reading market.  

Anyone out there actually reading this series?

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Acquired: Showcase Presents Hawkman v.2

Received as a Christmas gift from my wife, Showcase Presents Hawkman v.2 completes the punchlist for Volume 1 as well as the short run in The Atom & Hawkman.  The pre-Crisis stuff gets harder after that point, with the backups in Detective and World's Finest being surprisingly pricey and not likely to be reprinted.  Still, looking forward to cracking this one open and getting more straight-up Silver Age goodness.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

James Robinson - Hawkman Namedrop

James Robinson, in an Newsarama interview about some upcoming stuff in Justice League of America, had this to say regarding the Winged Wonder:

Nrama: You hinted that you'd be writing Hawkman sometime in the future. Can you clarify that statement at all?

Robinson: No. No comment on that one.

No comment, huh, James?  Sounds to me like a confirmation!!!  Well maybe not a confirmation but certainly adding more fuel to the speculatory fire.  If he wasn't writing Hawkman, he would just deny it, wouldn't he?  Right?

This is so exciting.  It's like the time that found that squirrel who looked like Abraham Lincoln.

Hawkgirl Sketch By Diego Bernard

Our sketch today is by Diego Bernard, who's work I am not familiar with but has credits on Dynamite's Savage Tales, The Man With No Name, and Kato, as well as Grimm Fairy Tales by Zenoscope.

It seems that his work on Savage Tales informed this pin-up sketch, because Hawkgirl looks ready to tear apart whoever gets in her way!  Kendra's costume looks great, and she looks athletic and sexy at the same time, without looking crass.  Her chest and stomach, for instance, are definitely handled well.  The helmet looks dead-on accurate, and her mace, bracers, and belt all ring true.  The wings are handled well, which can be tricky.  A lot of artists want to minimize Hawkgirl's wings, but Bernard does good work with them.  

For me, the grimace on her face makes the sketch.  Coupled with the vacant, helmeted eyes, she looks like the woman warrior which Hawkgirl should be, ready to pounce.  She looks like a real bird of prey here.  Just a great piece all around -- right in time for Christmas!

Disclaimer: I do not own or have possession of this sketch.  It is being reposted from the cited website only.

Image: Hawkgirl pin-up, 2007, Diego Bernard, image retrieved from Comic Art Fans.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Live Action Hawkgirl?

Here we have a mock up of what a live action Hawkgirl might look like on the big or small screen.  Yeah, my wife might not like to hear it, but this Hawkgirl can kick my butt any day!  Yowza!  Goes to show that Hawkgirl's costume can in fact be adapted to live action without losing the sex appeal while keeping it pretty close to the source material.  Not sure who the model is, but she, ahem, fills out the costume quite nicely, yes?

Image: "Live Action" Hawkgirl, 2010, "JoshMC," image retriebed from

Waiting In The Wings -- 12/23/2010

Any good Hawkstuff coming out in time for Christmas?  Let's find out!

DC Direct Black Lantern Hawkgirl -- I need to get Dead Kendra to go along with the Dead Carter... which I still need to buy.  Yeah comic book fans are weird.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Read: Brightest Day #13

Issue: Brightest Day #13
Title: "Under A Blood Red Sky"
Published Date: Nov 2010
Generation: Modern Carter, Modern Shiera
Retcon Status: In Continuity

Summary: On Hawkworld, Hawkman and Tonarr lead a Lion-mane assault on Queen Shrike's Manhawk army.  Tonarr is trying to organize tactics in order to lay siege to the castle, but Hawkman is only concerned with one thing: finding Hawkgirl.  Inside, Shiera is taunted by Hath-Set, who looks forward to killing her once again.  Hawkgirl promises to kill Hath-Set and break the curse, and then deal with her mother, Queen Rhea, as well.  Rhea, now calling herself Queen Shrike, relates the story of the Thanagarian ship crashing in ancient Egypt, and how her husband the Pharaoh was not ambitious enough in his plans for the Nth Metal contained within.  So Rhea murdered him and made it look like a suicide, and then entered into a pact with Hath-Set, who foresaw a prophecy of immortality for them.  After the murders of Prince Khufu and Princess Chay-era, Rhea ruled for countless years.  Eventually she grew bored, and sought an adventure.  Finding the gateway to Hawkworld, she conquered it, and ruled from her floating palace.  Now, she tells her daughter, she seeks to spread her power further, and needs the portal Hath-Set created -- along with the "keys" of the bodies of Hawkman and Hawkgirl -- to achieve it.

Hath-Set moves to begin the ritual by nailing Hawkgirl to the bone portal, but he is interrupted by the furious entry of a bloodied and bruised Hawkman.  Hawkgirl snatches Hath with her legs and snaps his neck, while Hawkman throws himself at Queen Shrike.  But he finds himself in trouble since Queen Shrike can control Nth Metal with her mind!  And that's not all: she can also control anyone who has been in long proximity to the metal, including Hawkman and Hawkgirl!  Using her powers to stick Hakwman to the portal, she uses the lovers and Hath-Set's corpse (an unknowning pawn in Shrike's plan all along) to open the gateway, ready to spread her control to... Zamaron?

Review: A new wrinkle is added to the now-familiar history of Hawkman and Hawkgirl, but it is not an unwelcome one.  Queen Shrike is shaping up to be a strong addition to the Hawks' Roues Gallery, and her connection with the couple and their history slots her in nicely with other baddies such as Hath-Set and Gentleman Ghost.  The story is pretty straightforward (save for the twist at the end, although I guess the cover should have been a tell?), so the main star here is the art.  Creditted to Joe Prado, Ivan Reis, and Adrian Syaf, I am not sure who handled what pages but there are several splash pages which are simply amazing.  Two feature Hawkman's battle rage, while the third illustrates Shrike's narrative.  All are excellently rendered... I will see if I can scan them in.  Not all readers are as interested in the Hawks story as I am (and frankly I like all of the narrative plotlines of this series) but this is strong stuff, building on what has come before but moving in new directions as well.

Image: Brightest Day #13, 2010, David Finch.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Waiting In The Wings -- 12/15/2010

Any Hawk-stuff coming your way this week?  Let's find out!

Brightest Day #16 - -A review of #13 is coming this week, but I have to say that this title is the one which drives me the most nuts getting from my mail order service.  I feel so far behind everyone else and have to avoid so many spoilers!  It's very frustrating!  Still, it's worthwhile for a book which rocks as much as this one does.  In any event, this issue looks to be a Firestorm story but we might get the Winged Wonders in a look-in or tease.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Watched: Smallville, "Icarus"

Title: Smallville, "Icarus"
Original Airdate: December 10, 2010
Generation: Golden Age Carter

Summary: At the engagement party of Clark Kent and Lois Lane, Carter Hall tells the groom to be that when it comes to wedding planning, it's best to agree with your bride.  He then talks to Oliver Queen about love and loss, and the two bond over their missing loves.  The joviality is cut short later that night when Oliver is attacked by an agry mob after breaking up a mugging on the streets of Metropolis.  Carter and Courtney Whitmore come to his aid, but the situation quickly starts turning into a riot.  Stargirl uses her Cosmic Rod to remove the heroes.  But the damage is done: General Slade, administrator of the newly passed Vigilante Registration Act, is on the warpath.  Clark and the others decide to go underground to spare those closest to them.  Slade, however, orders the interrogation of known "Vigilante sympathizers," including Dr. Emil Hamilton, Tess Mercer, and Lois Lane, taking them prisoner.

Breaking into Slade's office (all separately), Clark, Oliver, and Carter find the list of interogatees, code-named "Project: Icarus," and talk about the rising tide of hate in the city.  Oliver speculates that Slade and the angry mob are possessed by Darkseid; Carter says that this is not the first time that the Darkness has tried to gain a foothold on Earth.  Each of those other times, he was one of the ones who stopped it, and he says that they will stop it this time too.  Carter decides to take out Slade, while Clark heads out to rescue the prisoners, but finds that Lois is not with them.  

Lois, who had escaped earlier, is in Oliver's office when Slade enters.  She puts up a good fight, but Slade is no longer vulnerable to "Death's Stroke."  Hawkman smashes through the window, and he and Slade engage in a furious battle.  Hawkman is able to seriously wound Slade with his mace, but Slade gets the upper hand and impales Hawkman through the chest with his sword.  A stray spark lights a stack of gas tanks, striking a huge explosion - the force of which blows Lois out the window and lights Hawkman's wings on fire.  He dives out the window to save her.  Later, when Clark finds the carnage of the office, he sees that Carter has saved Lois, but at the cost of his own life.  Clark tells Carter that he can't begin to thank him for everything he has done.  Carter says that he will be reunited with Shiera soon, and tells Clark that Lois is all the "backup" he will ever need.  With that, Carter Hall dies.

In Egypt, all of the heroes are serving as pallbearers for their fallen ally.  Carter Hall is interred in an ancient tomb next to his beloved Shiera, his helmet and mace placed atop his grave.  But as the mourners look on, a mysterious small pyramid emerges from the sand, glowing bright white.  In a flash, all of the heroes are laid out unconscious...

Review: I figured from the title that this episode would feature a healthy dose of Carter Hall, but I did not think it would be as big as it was.  Michael Shanks really sinks his teeth into the Winged Wonder, always making his presence imposing without sacrificing the intellect one expects from  a man as learned as Carter.  There's a lot going on here, as this is the final season of Smallville so all bets are off.  The image of Hawkman pulling an Icarus to save Lois is one of the best in a long time on the show, and the death and funeral of Hawkman were both extremely well done.  The balance of the story is just as interesting to me, a Smallville viewer from day one.  It's all building towards a crescendo of chaos which should be suitably epic.

All in all, a very good episode and one heck of a send off (if, indeed, it is his send off) of the Smallville version of Hawkman.  

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Brave & The Bold Postcard

As promised a few weeks back, this is the second of two USPS issued postcards to tie into the DC Comics stamps which were released in 2006.  This one features the cover to The Brave & The Bold #36, the first appearance of the traditionally most well-known of Hawkman's foes, the Shadow-Thief.  (Nowadays one can make an argument for the Gentleman Ghost, but that's another post.)  

Still a bummer that I never saw these postcards in the post office.  But them's the breaks in the hardcore, underground world of comic book collectable tie-in merchandise.

Image: Hawkman postcard, 2006, Joe Kubert, image obtained from eBay.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Mayfairstivus Bonus: Hawkwoman!

Welcome to the Morning After Mayfairstivus!

Because of my stupid work schedule and that unfortunate sleep requirement my getting-older-every-day body seems addicted to, I never got to post my second entry into Mayfairstivus after the Winged Wonder the other day.  So in the spirit of being a Gentile who has figured out from his Jewish relatives-through-marriage that most Jewish holidays involve eating pot roast, I am presenting Shayera Hol-nee-Thal as a little bonus content.

Hawkwoman is "raising the roof" here, but that silliness aside I don't particularly like this artwork.  Looks very stiff an amateurish.  Her helmet especially doesn't do much for me.  But it gets the job done I guess.

Her stats seem pretty comparable to her husband's.  They trade a point in Influence and Strength (which makes sense), and Katar has an extra point of Body (which if I was more knowledgeable about this system I might argue but I am willing to let slide).  Powers are of course identical, but Skills is where the differences show up.  Katar has the edge by a point each in Detective, Martial Artist, and Weaponry, and 2 points in Gadgetry.  Shayera, however, picks up 7 ranks in Charisma* to go with her higher Influence.  Most of those read to me, except gadgetry.  In the Silver Age, Shayera was more likely to bust out a Thanagarian device of some kind whereas Katar would use terrestrial methods.  I'd put her higher on Gadgetry for that alone.  Still, she certainly more than able to hang with her hubby and the two seem like a formidable pair to run into.

Limitations, Advantages, Drawbacks, and Equipment are identical.  I wonder, was there stats for other weapons in the main book so you could equip your Hawks with something other than their mace?  Seems like it would be easy enough to roll that up if not.

Again, much like Hawkman, I think this is a pretty decent representation of Shayera.  She's not a super powerhouse but she can hold her own, and she brings skills to the table which can be useful in situations other than bashing brains in.  Sounds like Hawkwoman to me.

Of course, the "Marriage" as a Drawback still makes me laugh, but them's the breaks.  I somehow see a group of players where one guy is playing Hawkman, and he brings in his girlfriend to play Hawkwoman and they just get waaaay too involved with each other during the game.  I guess it's a good (?) thing my wife is not into gaming!

Be sure to head over to DC Bloodlines to find the rest of the Mayfairstivus links!  The last time I posted them they screwed up my format, so there you go!  

*Yes, I own this shirt.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Hawkman on Smallville: Icarus

As the name of the episode suggests, Hawkman (in the guise of his secret identity Carter Hall) appears on this week's episode of Smallville.  Not sure why Carter is so chummy with Green Arrow, but that whole frenemy relationship is, as Frank said once, complex.

Smallville airs on Friday at 8 PM EST on The CW.

Image: Carter Hall and Oliver Queen on Smallville, 2010, image retrieved from Newsarama.  

Friday, December 3, 2010

Mayfairstivus 2010: Hawkman!

It's the most wonderful time of the year... that's right: Mayfairstivus!

Uh, what?  Yeah, you can point the blame for this directly at Diabolu Frank, he if the Idol-Head of Diabolu, Justice League Detroit, and lots of other quality comic book blogs.

Anyway, I'm the odd man out in this celebration because not only have I never played the Mayfair DC Comics RPG, up until recently I didn't know such a thing existed.  I was a Marvel guy for a long time, and I didn't start reading comics "for reals" until like 1991, so I was on the wrong side of the timeline for this game and its various editions and releases.  Hell, factor in the fact that I didn't get interested in RPGs until I was in high school, and didn't play my first real game until I was a frosh in college, and the only superhero game I have ever played was a one-off session of Mutants and Masterminds, and it all starts becoming clear.  Head over to Shag's run down of the system for more background.

(That having been said, I am working on a d20 War That Time Forgot game, which might be more my speed.  "The T-Rex moves in for the kill"  "Uh, I shoot him with my machine gun."  *roll*  "It has no effect."  "Uh... I... run?")

Nonetheless, I can still show off these scans which Frank was kind enough to supply me with!

Katar looks sort of like he just spotted a new Sundollars Coffee on the streets of Midway, but I like the nicely defined musculature he is sporting here.  The states don't mean much to me, but judging from Frank's post about the Bronze Tiger, it looks like Katar is either near or slightly above peak human on most of them, which makes sense.  Thanagarians have great technology and Hawkman is a very skilled combatant, but he's not mixing it up with the powerhouses.  I like the ranks in Detective, a definite nod to his Silver Age representation.  Same with Scientist, a connection to the Thanagarian science the Hawks would use back in the day.  It looks like Hawkman would fit in an adventure where he normally fits in with the League -- using his fighting skill and technological advantage to take down his foes rather than super powers.

Although, I must say I think Katar (and Shayera) would find listing "Married" as a Disadvantage quite inaccurate!

Let me give a final shout-out to one Mr, Tom Hartley, the inspiration for all of this nuttiness.  And be sure to check out these other fine Mayfairstivus participants!

The Anti-Didio League of America
The Aquaman Shrine
Booster Gold: BOO$TERRIFIC
Comics Make Me Happy!
The Continuity Blog
DC Bloodlines
Diana Prince as The New Wonder Woman
Doom Patrol: My Greatest Adventure #80
Firestorm Fan
Flash: Speed Force
Girls Gone Geek
Green Lantern Corps: The Indigo Tribe
Hawkman: Being Carter Hall 
Justice League Detroit
Martian Manhunter vs. The Idol-Head of Diabolu
Once Upon A Geek
Power of the Atom
Subject: Suicide Squad [Task Force X]
Supergirl Comic Box Commentary

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Waiting In The Wings -- 12/2/2010

Any newly released Hawkstuff out there for consumption this week?  Let's take a look and see!

Batman Confidential #51 -- Continuing the story from the previous issue featuring the classic Justice League, the Winged Wonder should put in at least a token appearance in this issue.

Brightest Day #15 -- I just received my copy of Brightest Day #13 last night, and it was the first of my new comics I read.  Needless to say I was beaming like an idiot and need to read it again.  It's pretty clear that Johns (because this is Johns' story and not Tomasi) is using stuff that he either couldn't or did not get the chance to get to in his Volume 4 run, and  massaging it to fit into the current status quo.  And I am personally fine with that.  This particular issue looks to be a Martian Manhunter showcase but the Hawks might pop up on a tease or "look in."