ShadowHawk (2010 Series) #1
Shadowhawk #1 (Image Comics)
By Dan Wickline, Tone Rodriguez, Steve Niles & Jim Valentino
Can I be honest here? The only original Image title I’ve ever read on a remotely regular basis was Jim Valentino‘s Shadowhawk. Already being a fan of Valentino‘s from Guardians of the Galaxy and What If?, I read the book and I’ve followed it through virtually every incarnation of the series. I was nervous about this issue, though, as it brings back the original Shadowhawk, Paul Johnstone, who famously died of AIDS at the end of that title’s initial run. This book spins out of the predictably-late Image United crossover, so we get some vague allusions to how Paul came back from the dead, but evidently that story is still waiting to be told elsewhere. Both stories in this issue, the main tale about Paul returning and a back-up by Steve Niles and creator Jim Valentino, are decent enough but don’t really feel like something special, something that heralds a “return.” Some of that, I suspect, is because of the lateness of the parent story. The book is dancing around the details we need to make it really interesting, and it will have to unless Image United gets back on-track. Paul’s death was also extremely poignant, much more than your average superhero death, so to accept his return takes a bit more from the reader than most other resurrections. We’re really just here waiting to see how it happened, and the book doesn’t give you anything to go on. It’s an okay issue, but for a triumphant return, I feel like there should be more.