I picked up a few issues of the monthly series, being captivated by the unique art appeal on the covers. The story inside was hard to follow if you only had an issue or two, so I picked up a few back issues to see if I could follow it then. Nope. There was a definite appeal to me, but I figured I would wait for the OHC. Luckily for me, they came out with this beautiful omnibus. The story makes more sense all in one reading. It’s gripping and hard to put down. This is one of Matt Fraction’s better stories. David Aja creates a masterpiece here (in the issues that he does, which is a bit more than half, plus most of the covers.)
The Omnibus includes 1-22 of the series, Annual 1 and Young Avengers Presents #6 (starring Kate Bishop as Hawkeye). The series is as much about Kate as it is about Clint. Their interaction is great. Her solo stories are very interesting. His solo adventures are very inventive. Definitely, the series is at its best with David Aja, but Javier Pulido, Annie Wu, Chris Eliopoulos, Francesco Francavilla, and Steve Lieber & Jesse Hamm do an admirable job creating unique visuals on their issues. Alan Davis has more mainstream artwork on Young Avengers Presents #6.
I love the inclusion of the ’70 Dodge Challenger! It’s one of the reasons I picked up the series.
#11 “Pizza Dog in Pizza is My Business” has Pizza Dog helping Hawkeye out. The dog relates everyone and everything to pictographic icons. It’s really a unique take on sequential art and a wonderful story to read. I love the clever use of icons revealing how a dog might see the world.
“Six Days in the Life of” is a visual journal of Clint guest-starring Tony Stark as they try to sort out his entertainment center wiring.
Issue 19 “The Stuff What Don’t Get Spoke” has sign language and minimal text.
The series can be fairly dark and has a few depressing moments, compared to the artwork. There are a few scenes of torture, but they aren’t too gratuitous. There are some light-hearted scenes to balance things out. Overall, once I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down until I was finished.
Extras include David Aja’s musical playlist (for his issues). I haven’t paired the music to the issues yet, but it’s on my to-do list. Extras have Adi Granov’s #1 variant, David Aja sketchbook, including Clint’s apartment roughs, Cover Concepts – they appear to be a bit pixelated – these (marker?) roughs are very cool, I wish the digital files were more crisp. We also get cover process for #13, #1 page 1, #3 page 1, #11, page 1 art process, #8 page nine script through finish development process (two pages), #9 page 3 dev process – also two pages, #9 page four dev process, two pages of color guide thumbnails (really makes you appreciate the overall work Hollingsworth puts into this), and three more pages of sketches and thumbnails.
Yes, the omnibus is a bit thin and might not be the best value, as far as page to price, but the work inside is an astounding depiction of both Kate and Clint as the archer. There are some common themes explored between this and the TV Series Arrow, but more than enough unique to both to keep them separate and fresh.