Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Jeff Parker Talks About Convergence: Hawkman

As the hype continues to build for DC's Convergence, the interviews have begun for the different creators working on the various miniseries.  Here at Being Carter Hall, I've always got my raptor-like eyes peeled (yeah right) for new interviews with Hawk-creators, so when Newsarama posted this piece with scribe of the forthcoming Convergence: Hawkman mini, Jeff Parker, I was pleasantly surprised, as most Hawkman books don't get much (positive) attention from the comic book press nowadays.

A couple of interesting exchanges:

Nrama: Where do we pick up the story of the Hawks in the first issue? What has just happened in their timeline when we meet them in this story?

Parker: This falls right after the Shadow War miniseries of the '80s, when we find that the Hawks' homeworld of Thanagar has agents throughout the galaxy looking to undermine other civilizations. And they're working on Earth, following Katar and Shayera Hol around, so they get pulled into the Convergence with the heroes.

I think this placement is a good move in that it lets Parker and company play with the Shadow War setting without having to worry about some of the developments from the ongoing series which followed it, such as the stuff with George Emmett or Gerald Trent.  Also, I find the idea that these Thangarian agents getting drawn into the Convergence accidentally to be really funny.  I can just see Fell Andar flipping out over his agents' incompetence.

As an aside, I wonder how many DC readers who came to the line in the 90s and 00s have no idea what the Shadow War is?  I know when I first became interested in Hawkman, I had no clue.

Nrama: As you mentioned, you're using Shayera Hol. How would you describe her?

Parker: She's more upbeat and assertive. It's no secret that versions of Hawkwoman later usurped Hawkman in cartoons and comics. I try to infer that by beefing up her role.

First off, a beefy role for Hawkwoman sounds just fine to me.  I've always espoused that one of the aspects which make the Hawks unique is that they truly are partners rather than hero and sidekick.  I also like Parker's acknowledgement of her status as a solo character thanks to Justice League and Justice League Unlimited, as well as Kendra Saunders' flying solo in JSA, JLoA, and her own title.

Secondly, and perhaps more important to me as a nitpicking fanboy, is that Parker specifically calls her Hawkwoman.  It seems like the interviewer (uncredited in the piece) sets him up by the phrasing of the question -- using "Shayera Hol" instead of either codename -- and Parker responds with "Hawkwoman."  Previously I had touched on the fact that the solicits for this series had referred to her as Hawkgirl, despite Shayera using the Hawkwoman moniker by the era this story is based around (Shadow War).  This is a very encouraging sign -- if the writer of the series is calling her Hawkwoman, I have to believe that there is a good chance she willbe called Hawkwoman in the actual book.  (Speculation: Maybe the solicit used Hawkgirl as that name is more well known?)

Mr. Parker also touches on working with Tim Truman and Enrique Alcatena, his use of humor in comics, and his thoughts on Convergence in general.  Definitely a bit of a puff piece, but still appreciated!


Anonymous said...

I've really become a big fan of Jeff Parker, and his taking on the Hawks from one of the best arcs in their history has me super excited! I think he setting here can work well, and I can't wait to see what he comes up with. I just wish we were going to get more of it.

Luke said...

I agree, but the two issue format gives me, as a reader, a chance to check out more of these Convergence books than I would have otherwise. And maybe the short length will force the creative teams to tell lean, mean superhero comics.

Anonymous said...

Like, good point, not being able to 'write for the trade' will make writers tell self-contained stories.

If there were more settings I was interested in, the variety of Convergence stories would mean more to me. As it is, the JSA book and the Larry Hama WW title are the only ones that pique my curiosity.

Luke said...

Honestly, I don't think DC is banking on folks buying all of the minis. Rather, I think they are trying to cast as wide a net as possible, with everything from Earth-2 to Flashpoint to Tangent and so forth. Given the event's origin as a "cover our rear ends while we move to the West Coast" fill-in, I think DC has concocted a pretty neat scenario here.