By Matt Fraction, Annie Wu, Matt Hollingsworth, and David Aja.
Matt Fraction brings us the first Kate Bishop-centric story since the Hawkeye Annual #1 in this latest issue. Kate is still living in L.A. and trying to make ends meet. She takes on her first case as a west-coast superhero, and attempts to make a living off of being a private investigator.
One of the great things about this book was that Fraction brings the same level of sarcasm and goofiness to Kate as he does with Clint. While he approaches the writing in much the same way, there is still a distinct voice for each character as they stumble through their adventures. Kate is more sarcastic and witty, where Clint is more goofy and bumbling. Fraction’s writing of the characters is really what makes this book stand out. He gives them voices that are easy to like and uses the action of the story to accentuate those voices and characteristics.
Even though we haven’t seen Kate in a long time (other than in Young Avengers) Fraction still picks up the story as though there was never a pause in her arc. This book was a great look at what it takes to establish yourself as a superhero among strangers, and also was a fun testament to Kate stepping out from Clint’s shadow and becoming her own hero. Fraction handles the storyline perfectly once again and doesn’t disappoint.
Annie Wu took over the art for this issue. Her clean design and her use of dark lines fit in well with the style of art that David Aja brings to the other books. Wu does some excellent work on the characters, accenting their emotions and expressions with detail and finesse. Matt Hollingsworth adds an extra layer to the art with his coloring. Hollingsworth emphasizes each page with an accent color that really works to bring out the different environments and situations that Kate encounters on her first solo adventure.
Fraction and Wu did an excellent job with their first Kate-centric book and with the reveal of her main villain at the end of the book (which really wasn’t a surprise) it will be fun to see what Kate gets into in her next issue.