Set in Chicago among escalating racial tension between citizens and police officers, Nighthawk follows the vigilante as he fights crime and corruption.  This dark and violent book could possibly be called “Marvel’s Batman”, but is there more going on inside?  Read your Major Spoilers review to find out!

Nighthawk_2_coverNIGHTHAWK #2
Writer: David F. Walker
Artist: Ramon Villalobos
Colorist: Tamra Bonvillain
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Editor: Katie Kubert
Publisher: Marvel
Cover Price: $3.99

Previously in NighthawkWhile fighting both the criminals that fear him and the police that hate him, Nighthawk learns of a serial killer known as the Revelator, killing white people who have mistreated African-Americans.  Now Nighthawk must find the killer while also dealing with the growing racial tension in the city.

HOT BUTTON ISSUE

I enjoyed Nighthawk #1 immensely but was a bit surprised that the issue wasn’t more controversial what with the hot button issue of racial wars in Chicago.  Police shooting African-Americans is a sensitive topic and I really thought the issue handled it quite well and being from Chicago, it also hit close to home.  The whole Captain America/Hydra ordeal overshadowed this I think.  It can be hard to put real life topics and issues into a book but David F. Walker manages to use the race topic as a backdrop while keeping his story front and center.  This issue does start off with cops harassing and eventually beating some black youths, and Nighthawk of course steps in.  It’s brutal and violent and I loved that he goes farther than most heroes.  I also liked that he warns both the cops and the kids that he’s watching them, not taking one side over the other.  The rest of the issue shows off more of Nighthawk’s detective skills, which was a nice change of pace from the action of the first.  It’s revealed that the business mogul Hanrahan is behind the white supremacists from the first issue.  There is fantastic dialogue from Hanrahan that resembles a certain presidential candidate so closely it had me laughing out loud.  Whether it was intentional humor or not, it was clever none the less.  More fun banter is had between Nighthawk and his assistant and we finally learn the Revelator’s killing pattern.  It looks like it will ramp up the tension in the issues to come and I’m excited to see where it leads, especially with the similarities to Nighthawk and the killer.

STYLISTIC AND BRUTAL

Ramon Villalobos has an art style that reminds me of Jordie Bellair’s work on Manhattan Projects without the bizarre attributes.  Villalobos does a wonderful job at making the violence seem real and when Nighthawk breaks a man’s arm, the move that he uses looks exactly like what someone in that fight would do.  Detail is strong and though I like the gadgets Nighthawk uses, his flying bike doesn’t resemble an owl to me and looked a bit bizarre.  Faces can look strange at times but that is due more to the style than anything else.  Coloring is used extremely well, especially in the lighting.  Red bathes panels at times, giving them a menacing feel, especially when we see the Revelator in his home.  It’s a good looking book and has a cool indy vibe that is refreshing to see in a mainstream title.

BOTTOM LINE:  A LOW KEY TITLE WORTHY OF MORE ATTENTION

Nighthawk #2 is another great issue that matches the quality of the first.  I liked seeing Nighthawk use his detective skills and there is still enough action and violence to satisfy your darker half.  The serial killer’s motives are unclear but the pattern is disturbing and sure to amp up the racial tensions in the story.  Fans of the Squadron Supreme should check this book out as I’m sure they’ll get a kick out seeing the character going at it alone.  Readers who are looking for a darker and somewhat controversial story would be wise to pick this up as well.  I’d say this is another one of Marvel’s hidden gems that deserves more attention.

Set in Chicago among escalating racial tension between citizens and police officers, Nighthawk follows the vigilante as he fights crime and corruption.  This dark and violent book could possibly be called "Marvel's Batman", but is there more going on inside?  Read your Major Spoilers review to find out! NIGHTHAWK #2 Writer: David F. Walker Artist: Ramon Villalobos Colorist: Tamra Bonvillain Letterer: VC's Joe Caramagna Editor: Katie Kubert Publisher: Marvel Cover Price: $3.99 Previously in Nighthawk:  While fighting both the criminals that fear him and the police that hate him, Nighthawk learns of a serial killer known as the Revelator, killing…
Nighthawk #2 is a well written, dark book that touches on some hot button issues. Fans of Squadron Supreme or dark stories should check this hidden gem.

Nighthawk #2

Writing
Art
Coloring

Nighthawk #2 is a well written, dark book that touches on some hot button issues. Fans of Squadron Supreme or dark stories should check this hidden gem.

User Rating: 4.28 ( 2 votes)

The Author

Wilson

Wilson

One of the two idiots of Shock 'N Awe Toy Reviews, ever since he was young, Chris has sided with super-villains. At age 8 he became a Decepticon sympathizer. When he turned 18 he left home to become an Agent of A.I.M. He quit at 21 (the costumes were too stupid) and devoted his time to all things geek. His hobbies include making aluminum foil hats, magic, taxidermy and music. Oh, and reading comics. Lots and lots of comics. More nonsense can be followed at @scaabs on Twitter and his YouTube channel, Shock 'n Awe Toy Reviews.

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2 Comments

  1. June 26, 2016 at 6:26 am — Reply

    I’ve learned to not let political allegories, be it left-wing or right, affect my enjoyment of a good story. This book has been solid so far but the art isn’t quite my taste. His style reminds me of the characters from BoJack Horseman at times, if that makes any sense… look at some characters from this book and that show side by side and tell me you don’t see it, haha.

    • Hank Tankerous
      July 5, 2016 at 11:14 pm — Reply

      I feel you on the political stuff but the weakness isn’t the obvious bias, it’s the one dimensional characters and cliched archetypes. Racist biker gang, racist cops, racist business mogul, racist everybody vs not racist good guys. Its heavy-handed and amateurish.

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