Hawkeye, Volume 1: My Life as a Weapon by Matt Fraction

Hawkeye, Volume 1: My Life as a Weapon

The breakout star of this summer's blockbuster Avengers film, Clint Barton - aka the self-made hero Hawkeye - fights for justice! With ex-Young Avenger Kate Bishop by his side, he's out to prove himself as one of Earth's Mightiest Heroes! SHIELD recruits Clint to intercept a packet of incriminating evidence - before he becomes the most wanted man in the world. You won't be...

Title:Hawkeye, Volume 1: My Life as a Weapon
Author:
Rating:
ISBN:0785165622
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Paperback
Number of Pages:136 pages

Hawkeye, Volume 1: My Life as a Weapon Reviews

  • Anne
    Aug 17, 2013

    I'd been looking forward to reading this for so long, that I think I had a little mini-anxiety attack when I realized I was looking at it.

    I mean,

    the cool kids had

    read it.

    And here it was, in

    hands!

    I. Was. Cool.

    Then I opened it up. And I shit you not, my first reaction was this:

    So I shut it.

    Yes. I w

    I'd been looking forward to reading this for so long, that I think I had a little mini-anxiety attack when I realized I was looking at it.

    I mean,

    the cool kids had

    read it.

    And here it was, in

    hands!

    I. Was. Cool.

    Then I opened it up. And I shit you not, my first reaction was this:

    So I shut it.

    Yes. I was so pissed at the blocky drawings that I put it down, and went to make myself some coffee.

    And I'll bet my secret stash mini-Snickers that you guys are all going

    Well, sorry. I wasn't expecting

    . And coupled with my sky-high expectations for this one? Let's just say that I'm not terribly surprised that I had a bit of a hissy fit/mental breakdown. In fact, I can actually feel my blood pressure rising just reliving those first few moments.

    Hang on. Gonna make some coffee...

    I'm back.

    .

    Did I overreact?

    Of course. Even I can see that,

    . Hell, I could see it

    . But I didn't care at the time, because I was in the middle of a hormone-induced break with reality. Couldn't be helped. There are some

    when the slightest thing can send an otherwise rational woman spiraling into Crazy-Eyed-She-Devil territory. Yesterday was one of those days for me.

    I'm fine today. Mostly.

    So how did this go from I-Want-To-Shove-It-In-My-Toilet-But-It-Won't-Fit-Down-The-Tiny-Hole-In-The-Bottom-Of-The-Bowl, to

    stars?

    Coffee, of course.

    And

    I raided the kid's Easter baskets for any leftover chocolate.

    Then I sat down again. And

    time I read it.

    Oh. Muh. Gawd.

    It was everything you guys said it would be

    more!

    And:

    If you didn't get a little misty-eyed about Arrow/Lucky, then I'm afraid we can't be friends. Personally, I was slightly choked up by the time Clint named the dog.

    This volume also included a story from the Young Avengers at the end, and it was phenomenal!

    But.

    I'll let you in on a little secret...

    Get this review and more at:

  • Kemper
    Sep 19, 2013

    Hey, Marvel. Instead of massive crossovers and killing off major characters as publicity stunts, do more like this. Please and thank you.

    Hawkeye seems like an odd character for Matt Fraction to do after his acclaimed run on

    where he wrote Tony Stark as a slightly dickish genuis who was more interesting than the superhero aspect. He uses a similar style to give us a version of Clint Barton that relies on the character’s history instead of discarding it, yet could be picked up

    Hey, Marvel. Instead of massive crossovers and killing off major characters as publicity stunts, do more like this. Please and thank you.

    Hawkeye seems like an odd character for Matt Fraction to do after his acclaimed run on

    where he wrote Tony Stark as a slightly dickish genuis who was more interesting than the superhero aspect. He uses a similar style to give us a version of Clint Barton that relies on the character’s history instead of discarding it, yet could be picked up by any casual fan and enjoyed. As a result, we get a fresh perspective on Hawkeye and one helluva of a fun book.

    This should be the usual thing of a hero best known for being part of a larger group having some side adventures on their own. Hawkeye is longtime Avenger where his insecurities about his lack of superpowers often manifested in a smart-ass attitude and problem with authority. As Clint points out several times here, he’s just a guy with a bow-n-arrow who usually works with people far more powerful than him. The easy thing to do would have been to revamp him closer to the

    version that was used in

    movie to make Clint a super-secret SHIELD agent who goes out and has covert adventures. That could have worked, but would have seemed very Wolverine-ish.

    What’s brilliant about this is that Fraction went in the opposite direction and plays up the angle that Clint Barton doesn’t have any powers and is frequently in over his head. The first panel shows him crashing out a high window and the fall puts him the hospital for six weeks. When he’s not off avenging Clint wants to live a somewhat normal life in his Brooklyn apartment where he enjoys grilling out with his neighbors on the roof, but he keeps getting sucked into bad situations like dealing with a Russian mafia slumlord who owns his building. Even when he does a side job for SHIELD that involves going to sleazy Madripoor, Clint has to fight off thieves trying to steal his wallet. And since he doesn’t have the powers of a Norse god or a high-tech suit of armor Clint frequently gets the crap kicked out of him.

    All of this is done with plenty of humor and heart. If the storyline involving Pizza Dog doesn’t get to you, then get tested because you’re probably a sociopath. I also love that they’re using Kate Bishop as a kind of partner/sidekick. There’s a funny dynamic to that because Kate replaced Clint when he was suffering from a minor case of superhero death, and she’s kept the name of Hawkeye, too. So it’s Hawkeye and Hawkeye. Batman wouldn’t put up with that, but it’s perfect for the adventures of a slightly scruffy superhero.

  • Jeff
    Oct 11, 2013

    If someone had told me that one of the best graphic novel collections of the past year would be about Hawkeye (the Avenger, not the M.A.S.H character), I would have scoffed. Hawkeye? Really? The bow and arrow dude with a big mouth and identity issues. Meh!

    Well, true believers, they would have been correct. In this collection, he’s a compulsive, impetuous, big mouth first, super-hero second, who’s not above getting his butt kicked (repeatedly). One issue recounts how Clint Barton (aka Hawkeye) on

    If someone had told me that one of the best graphic novel collections of the past year would be about Hawkeye (the Avenger, not the M.A.S.H character), I would have scoffed. Hawkeye? Really? The bow and arrow dude with a big mouth and identity issues. Meh!

    Well, true believers, they would have been correct. In this collection, he’s a compulsive, impetuous, big mouth first, super-hero second, who’s not above getting his butt kicked (repeatedly). One issue recounts how Clint Barton (aka Hawkeye) on the way to the store to get post it notes to keep track of his arrow collection, gets sidetracked, making one bad decision after another until he’s rescued (again) by Kate Bishop, his female counter-part.

    It’s smart, funny, and well-written. David Aja’s art is the coolest thing I’ve seen in a Marvel comic since Mike Allred did X-Statix.

    Highly recommended, Bro.

    Bonus: A clever place to hide your credit cards is suggested.

  • Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
    Apr 30, 2014

    My library actually got in a bunch of new graphic novels. So I was really excited to pick this one up because

    1. Avengers

    2. This guy

    Clint Barton AKA Hawkeye is pretty cool. Even though he doesn't have the powers that the other Avengers have at their disposal.

    He has a boomerang arrow for crap's sake! I should have loved it. All my friends on Goodreads that have read this book have rated it quite highly.

    So of course I go and read it wrong...that's just what I do.

    I think that is it!

    Anyways. The

    My library actually got in a bunch of new graphic novels. So I was really excited to pick this one up because

    1. Avengers

    2. This guy

    Clint Barton AKA Hawkeye is pretty cool. Even though he doesn't have the powers that the other Avengers have at their disposal.

    He has a boomerang arrow for crap's sake! I should have loved it. All my friends on Goodreads that have read this book have rated it quite highly.

    So of course I go and read it wrong...that's just what I do.

    I think that is it!

    Anyways. The art wasn't my favorite but I overlooked it because I almost got to see Hawkeye's wanker.

    There is much ado about a tape that everyone wants..including an evil heiferness. The only part I really liked was Pizza Dog...because dogs.

    *goes to sit in shame corner*

  • Will M.
    Jun 19, 2014

    I believe this will be my first time writing a review for graphic novels. I firmly believe that graphic novels need the same attention and effort given to regular novels. From now on, I'll be reviewing more graphic novels.

    Hawkeye is probably the most hated avenger, and I used to be one of them. I believe I used to think of him as a ripoff Green Arrow, but maybe I was a huge DC fanboy then. I even researched who came first, and was glad that Green Arrow came first. If you even saw my profile, it'

    I believe this will be my first time writing a review for graphic novels. I firmly believe that graphic novels need the same attention and effort given to regular novels. From now on, I'll be reviewing more graphic novels.

    Hawkeye is probably the most hated avenger, and I used to be one of them. I believe I used to think of him as a ripoff Green Arrow, but maybe I was a huge DC fanboy then. I even researched who came first, and was glad that Green Arrow came first. If you even saw my profile, it's stated there that I'm a huge Green Arrow fan, so there's that.

    This

    graphic novel series about Hawkeye focuses on his life outside the avengers. I wasn't that interested in reading it, but I eventually bought this and was obliged to read this. I have to say I'm glad I decided to read this. Not only did it make me want to know more about Hawkeye, but it also made me like him a bit more.

    Like I said, his life outside of the avengers. I'm not sure if this new series was a new take on Hawkeye, but he still had a pretty cool life outside avengers. He's rich and good with the ladies. Somewhat like a brighter Batman (who do I keep comparing DC and Marvel characters). Even when he's not with Capt. America and the others, his life was still action packed. A few appearances of the avengers cast produced a smile from my face, especially Spider-man.

    4/5 stars. While I was really entertained, I was also hoping for more. This is a very good first volume for fellow Hawkeye newbies. It will not blow your mind, but this is kinda new in terms of style. I'm not a huge reader Marvel wise (DC fanboy), but I am trying to be updated especially on X-men and Wolverine. I can be unbiased, even if DC dominates my childhood, and my life. Marvel is starting to grow on me though.

  • karen
    Aug 15, 2015

    all right, all right, all right.

    is correct in all things and maybe hawkeye

    be interesting, in the right hands.

    so, anne was kind enough to bully me into reading a hawkeye book. i'm not a superhero person, and i've read very little in the way of superhero-based graphic novels. i read

    and

    because they were assigned for one of my library-school readers' advisory classes, and i've read a bunch of batman books because - batman, but as far as the rest of

    all right, all right, all right.

    is correct in all things and maybe hawkeye

    be interesting, in the right hands.

    so, anne was kind enough to bully me into reading a hawkeye book. i'm not a superhero person, and i've read very little in the way of superhero-based graphic novels. i read

    and

    because they were assigned for one of my library-school readers' advisory classes, and i've read a bunch of batman books because - batman, but as far as the rest of the world of superheroes is concerned - i was completely at a loss. they're not approachable to me; too many different artists and conflicting storylines/alternate timelines and the early ones seem dated and cheesy but i felt like you would NEED to read the early ones in order to have a foundation for the characters and to see how things evolved or to understand the references or to get the jokes and it was one of those things that seemed too much trouble to even begin getting into now, when i'm probably more than halfway through my lifespan.

    and hawkeye - meh. i may not know much about superheroes in graphic novels, but i do watch all the superhero movies that come out because i'm a sucker for the action films kaboom kaboom pow pow. and while i didn't actively dislike hawkeye the way i did captain america, he's just kinda … there. there's nothing particularly appealing about him, he's just the guy with the arrows, and he doesn't have pretty elfhair

    and he's not katniss

    so it's hard for me to be enthusiastic about archery when there's a giant green thing stomping and smashing and there's scarlett johansson and her attributes to look at instead.

    but sometime it's good to be bullied into things. because that's kinda the point of this hawkeye book - he's just a

    . just a regular old joe whose heroic deeds include paying a dog's vet bills and preventing his neighbors from getting evicted. just a guy who can't even keep his arrows organized and labeled, but still gets to intercourse pretty girls and fumble into car chases and kick the butts of ninjas and magicians and various other hoods along with girl-hawkeye, while making plenty of self-deprecating remarks and having some great banter along the way.

    it's a fun story, and i'm glad i read it despite my initial reservations of "i do not like this art" and "what is going on with this formatting and are these pages out of order because why does this dog story keep popping up into the middle of this other story and what is even happening?" but greg assured me things were as they should be, and even though i did not understand the last story at all and i think it relates to something outside of the boundaries of this book and is exactly the kind of thing i was worried about being confused by coming so late to the superhero world, i still enjoyed reading this for the laughs and the pizza dog and the general shrugged tone of the narrative.

    so, yes.

    greg sent me the next group of hawkeye adventures and i will read those soon, and thanks to anne for giving me virtual swirlies and beating me up by the internet flagpole and all that. i have promised to make her turtles from this book:

    , and i will be making good on that promise probably next week - as soon as it cools off a little bit here and they won't turn into liquid blobs in the mail.

    just don't make me read a captain america. even i have my limits.

    turtles TK

  • Jesse (JesseTheReader)
    Feb 20, 2016

    WHY DID IT TAKE ME SO LONG TO PICK THIS UP?! Hawkeye is the best! This was loaded with action & humor. All I need when it comes to comics tbh. Also Kate Bishop is bae.

  • Jan Philipzig
    Jul 25, 2016

    ... You cowboy around with the Avengers some. Guys got, what, armor. Magic. Super-powers. Super-strength. Shrink-dust. Grow-rays. Magic. Healing factors. I’m an orphan raised by carnies. Fighting with a stick and a string from the Paleolithic era. So when I say this looks ‘bad’? I promise you it feels worse... Paleolithic. I looked it up.”

    That’s how Marvel’s influential surprise hit (first launched in 2012) starts, and it’s a good indicator of the title’s successful mar

    ... You cowboy around with the Avengers some. Guys got, what, armor. Magic. Super-powers. Super-strength. Shrink-dust. Grow-rays. Magic. Healing factors. I’m an orphan raised by carnies. Fighting with a stick and a string from the Paleolithic era. So when I say this looks ‘bad’? I promise you it feels worse... Paleolithic. I looked it up.”

    That’s how Marvel’s influential surprise hit (first launched in 2012) starts, and it’s a good indicator of the title’s successful marketing strategy. At its core, Matt Fraction’s

    is a superhero comedy targeted at the politically and economically marginalized “emerging adult” who has a hard time identifying with, say, everybody’s favorite millionaire Bruce Wayne. Or with anybody in a position of power, for that matter. And as the quote suggests, the series initially matches its own ambitions quite well.

    It quickly becomes clear, however, that

    does not really care about the underdog at all. Instead, it very much embraces the inherently conservative rules of the superhero genre and even takes them to the extreme in places. “Hobos” serve as the butt of several jokes, for example. In issue #1, Russian mobsters (rather than an exploitative system) are blamed for an increasingly unaffordable rental market. In issue #2, our hero for a brief moment considers the sad fact that “many” of the “ultra-rich” are “bad guys” but then, instead of pursuing this thought, goes for the generic baddies anyway: those who try to steal from the ultra-rich (and are portrayed as even more despicable individuals, of course).

    In issues #4 and 5, the videotaped record of secret, government-controlled yet undemocratic so-called anti-terrorism activities that involve the Avengers and even murder is about to leak. Captain America’s response: “Make no mistake... This is very bad.” S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Maria Hill couldn’t agree more: “We have 72 hours before the tape goes up for auction... After that it’s out in the wild... The tape gets out and it’s bad for you, for S.H.I.E.L.D., the Avengers, the military, and it is personally very bad for the President of the United States.” Oh my. Thankfully, our hero saves the day by ensuring that the government’s illegal secret activities remain hidden from “the wild.” Phew, I guess we can all breathe a sigh of relief now.

    With its refusal to acknowledge the systemic roots of poverty and its endorsement of government secrecy (even of the government’s right to have people secretly assassinated at will),

    ultimately promotes a reactionary world view that feels more problematic today than ever before. Ironically, it is the kind of ideology that has contributed to the gradual disempowerment of young adults in North America since the 1980s—the very group of people that represents the title’s target audience.

    From an ideological perspective, then, Matt Fraction’s

    is typical Disney fare. Thanks to its engaging “loser”-protagonist, though, it feels surprisingly relevant for a mainstream superhero title. It is also competently executed and even pretty funny in places, at least if you don’t let its underlying reactionary messages sour your mood.


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