By Matt Fraction, Annie Wu & Matt Hollingsworth
Hawkeye was a wonderful series in the beginning, but the story and fan excitement seems to have waned over the past few issues. An inconsistent publishing schedule has also recently turned a few readers away, but this month we get the release of issue #16. Wait, let’s check this again…yep, issue #16. This was a little odd given that issue #15 hasn’t come out yet. Don’t worry though, you didn’t miss an installment. As already mentioned, there have been some release scheduling issues with this series, and the same problem has hit #15 especially hard. But let’s move on, shall we?
First off, the dialogue in Hawkeye #16 retains its extremely colloquial tone which continues to work well for these characters. Although Clint hasn’t been around for a while, Kate is fun enough in her own way. That really about sums up the issue; it’s fun and very cute, but there isn’t a whole lot of substance to these books lately. Kate takes it upon herself to help out a down-on-his-luck character who, let’s be real here, is essentially Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys. Not a lot to get really engaged in, but again, a cute and fun book. While a lot of the series has gotten somewhat juvenile, this works pretty well for the overall tone of the story, and especially the appropriately in-character dialogue employed. Matt Fraction also provides a number of sincerely laugh-out-loud moments which really helps make the relatively bland story of Hawkeye #16 much more enjoyable.
Annie Wu is back drawing the L.A. escapades again this issue. The illustrations in the latest installment are sharp and very clear with a minimalist sensibility that works very well for the characters. The facial expressions in particular look terrific throughout the book. Most of the time, however, the layouts and the environments leave something to be desired. Again though, the overall style suits the cutesy tone of the series. As always, Matt Hollingsworth does an exemplary job of emphasizing the minimalist style of the visuals with his straight-up coloring job. His contribution also lends a much needed sense of pulp fiction to a number of scenes.
Hawkeye #16 was a cute issue with some fun dialogue, but it would be nice to see more from this series. However, the book was definitely an enjoyable read with some great humor that probably won’t disappoint the Hawkeye fans.