Hawkeye: Blindspot #4(of 4) - 'The Beginning' - McCann, Diaz & Morey
Story - We all read comics for different reasons, and most of us read different comics for different readings. There are books we'll read because we love the writer, there are books we'll read for the art. There are books we read because they are supposedly 'important' in the continuity of particular worlds, and there are books we read because of their literary merit, because of their ideas. And there are books like Hawkeye: Blindspot, which we read simply because they are about character we like. The reason I liked this book is because I like Hawkeye, nothing more, nothing less.
I've always liked Hawkeye, ever since I started reading the Avengers (with Busiek's run, and reprints from the Silver Age) he's been one of my favourite members of the team, even when Bendis killed him. Sure, I was annoyed at the time, but his return in House Of M was worth it. I even liked him as Ronin. I just like the character of Clint Barton, and am perfectly willing to shell out $2.99 (£2.25 in ye olde englishe pennies) and get a dose of him doing his archery thang. And Hawkeye: Blindspot delivered in that aspect.
This final issue is mainly a fight scene between a currently blind Hawkeye and his currently not-dead brother Barney, who has been kitted out as the new Trickshot by Baron Zemo. This was a decent fight, and it was rooted well in universal issues all readers can connect with, sibling rivalry, and even I suppose the fear of becoming your father, which Barney is doing (Baron Zemo could also play into this role). It was pretty down to earth for an Avengers story really. I felt that McCann handled Clint's lack of sight well, making reference to Daredevil of course. But I think we all knew Clint would be fine, he's been blind in a couple of alternate futures (most recently Old Man Logan) and it's never stopped him before.
After this fight, I did feel that the ending of this book was pretty unsatisfying. Baron Zemo runs away, presumably to show up in a bigger book like Captain America and annoy Steve and Bucky, but I'd have liked to see Hawkeye be the one to take him out. Going back to Thunderbolts these two have had a fascinating relationship, and I would have liked to see that explored more, and perhaps have Zemo's motives be a bit less clear-cut evil. Although him giving Clint all that money was a bit of that traditional Helmut greyness. Clint getting his sight back was also a little convenient, but I suppose it makes sense, I doubt Bendis wants to deal with Hawkeye being blind, especially when there are Spider-Women to leer at, and Marvel already have one prominent blind superhero. But it does give this book a feeling of impermanence, like it didn't matter. But of course, Barney Barton is still around, so maybe another writer will pick up Trickshot and use him.
Overall, this book was nothing special, other than a strong story featuring a strong character in Hawkeye. If you liked Hawkeye, you'll enjoy this mini-series. If you don't really care for Hawkeye... then you won't miss much.
Art - Paco Diaz is an artist who is new to me, but he does a good job here, it's traditional bright superhero art, but this is a traditional superhero story. I think his work reminded me of a cross between Dale Eaglesham and Todd Nauck. I imagine we'll see him on a couple more Marvel minis and shorter stories soon, and he seems a good fit.
Best Line - 'Rogers cracked a joke? You sure you didn't do some brain surgery on him too, Doc?'