Mind control, a missing girl, a stolen ring, and a surprise return of your sister…All seem unrelated, unless you are Kate Bishop. Family matters take the spotlight in Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2 from Marvel Comics.
HAWKEYE: KATE BISHOP #2
Writer: Marieke Nijkamp
Artists: Enid Balam, Oren Junior
Colorist: Brittany Peer, Chris Peter
Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna
Editor: Caitlin O’Connell
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: December 22, 2021
Previously in Hawkeye: Kate Bishop: Kate doesn’t want to go home for the holidays, but a mysterious case lands in her lap that puts her face to face with her sister, a missing ring, and a missing child.
OBVIOUS TO US
Holidays go two ways for most people; those who are really excited to be around their family, and those that dread being around their family. Kate Bishop falls into the later group. I don’t think it has anything to with Kate being the black sheep of the family, nor some underlying resentment that comes from one’s definition of success, but that she is just so tired of having to live up to familial expectations.
This black sheep must find a missing child, and spends a great deal of time doing Hawkeye stuff – following the clues, putting two and two together, and surprisingly, teaming up with her sister to find the missing girl and solve the case (one of them at least) by the end of Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2. If there is going to be any family healing in this series, the sister team-up is one way to approach it, and I appreciate Marieke Nijkamp taking this approach to the family dynamic. Too often we see the family arguing and fighting with one another, only to fall into each other’s arms, hugging and crying as the music swells as the end credits play.
Then there is the larger mystery of Mr. Big hiding in the background doing a secret experiment that appears to be mind controlling everyone at the resort. The Puppet Master’s dramatic return to comics? A secret Marvel/DC crossover? Or is it something else? It was pretty clear from the first issue that the bracelets were behind everyone acting weird, and now that issue two is complete, this plot point feels like it is being drawn out for no other reason than to make it to issue five of the mini-series. I was really hoping we would get more of a reveal in this issue.
Every comic I’ve read this week appears to be using the same color palette: teal and light red, with splashes of green and brown. I don’t know if this is the new way of doing things, but seeing the same colors issue after issue, makes me think of the teal and orange debate that continues to rage across the film landscape. There is nothing wrong with the use of these colors, but once you see it, you can’t unsee it, and for someone like me, it becomes a greater distraction than it does a benefit.
The figure work in Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2 is consistent; everyone’s necks are a little too long, the body’s are stick thin, and chins seem to stick out a bit too far. Some people I know will scream, “That’s not how bodies work!” which gets tiring after a while, because these people still think comic art must be an accurate depiction of people in the real world. Those same people, by the way, never complain about the work of Charles Schulz, Bill Patterson, or Jim Davis. Art is subjective, and for me as long as the figure work is consistent, I’m fine with it. Enid Balam is consistent throughout the issue, and at no point is there ever any misidentification of characters, or objects.
BOTTOM LINE: I DIDN’T WANT TO LIKE THIS
When I reviewed the first issue of Hawkeye: Kate Bishop on the Major Spoilers Podcast last month, I really didn’t like it, and I was certainly not looking forward to reviewing this issue. That being said, after going through this issue, there are still a few things that I don’t like – mostly the pacing involving the Big Bad, but the portion of the story involving Kate’s investigation into the missing girl is well done, and I like the art.
If you are someone who is coming into the Kate Bishop series because of the recently concluded Disney+ series, there is a lot to like here. If you are someone who is a fan of Kate Bishop, this issue is enjoyable. If you have never read anything with Kate Bishop, and know little to nothing about the character, this series might be a bit frustrating at times. Still, there is enough here to keep me curious, and I actually want to read the next issue to find out what happens next. Bottom line – I didn’t want to like this issue, but I did, earning Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2 4 out of 5 Stars.
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Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2
I didn't want to like this issue, but in the end, it turned out much better than the first, causing me to want to read the next issue.