You know what sucks about being an Avenger? The only time when being an Avenger, a hero of goodness and Ass Kickery, sucks? It’s when you’re the one who slings a bow and arrow around his back and has no super powers. Oh it well and truly sucks a nut being Hawkeye.
But there are some upsides which Matt Fraction jauntily points out as he sees us through the quirky life of the purple archer just trying to make ends meet outside of the group and S.H.I.E.L.D.
We open up this comic series to a scene; Hawkeye is performing his special grappling arrow move. Then, he fails at it, falling quickly unto the roof of a car and breaking several bones in the process. After that, we see the aftermath of something tragic. Clint Barton hurtles into the hospital holding a severely hurt dog. These are just the introductory pages to a vigilante story told in a very unique manner.
Over the course of 20 issues, I’ve come to love Hawkeye and his unlucky ways. He isn’t like the rest of Avengers because his code of ethics falls firmly on the chaotic Robin Hood side of goodness.
Clint Barton, outside of the Avengers, suffers a lot of things we have to go through, daily. He’s almost constantly broke, stealing money from the vaguely Eurasian thugs that he keeps crossing paths with. His renown spreads over time, however, as the people of his building start to respect him for his vigilante ways. No one there, however, has any illusions of who Clint really is.
Oh, Matt doesn’t try to dismiss Hawkeye’s love life either. For anyone who wonders about Black Spider and Clint’s relationship? Well Hawkeye regards her as his ‘Work Wife’. Funny, huh? And there’s Kate… Oh Kate, lovely, Lady Hawkeye.
Hawkeye is one of those comics that exude a great amount of warmth by telling us a story that is familiar. Clint’s not the best Avenger in the world, he’s isn’t even the most popular. That leaves him with a bit of a minority complex so he tends to overcompensate, a lot. However, no matter how surrounded he is, he’ll always find a way out relatively unscathed.
Unfortunately, that fight instinct also applies to the way he deals with the people trying to help. Our comic protagonist is filled with conflicting morals like this, and so he tends to screw up even when he has the best intentions in mind. This complexity in character makes him much more relatable than his super-powered counter parts.
He’s an excellent addition to Marvel’s ever growing list of unique but powerfully written characters.