HAWKEYE #11 [Review]: Yo — this Pizza be off the Leash, Dog!
The first Marvel comic ever presented in Smell-O-Vision! Where else, but in the Eisner-worthy Hawkeye comic, would you find a book from the perspective of someone who can only see three colors?
This week it’s all about Lucky..
And pup may have just made Hawkeye #11 one of the best — if not trippiest — comics of 2013, courtesy of the creative dynamite of Matt Fraction, David Aja, and Matt Hollingsworth.
I’ve been an avid Hawkeye reader since Clint Barton’s off-Avengers adventures entered the ongoing fray. Yet, this is the first time I’ve noticed the AR logo in the comic. Intriguing. For once, The Apostle actually decided to whip out the ol’ cell phone and give it a whirl — and whattya know… I was treated to a small montage of dog photos from the Marvel editors. Dog photos. Montage.
Fraction and Aja’s Hawkeye, Mark Waid’s Daredevil notwithstanding, is arguably the finest Marvel comic on the shelf, and for many reasons. In addition to always looking so spectacularly hip month-to-month, the book isn’t afraid to hit home hard. Since Barton deals with many non-superhero “real world” issues himself (poverty, civil crime, younger/hotter coworkers…), the comic has collected on many of these themes. One, in particular, was a terrific Hurricane Sandy issue from a few months back. Always one to outdo(g) themselves, Team Hawkguy is up for five Eisners (Best New Series, Best Continuing Series, Best Cover Artist, Best Penciler/inker, and Best Writer), and now delivers a sole focus on Hawkeye’s pup, Pizza Dog.
“Pizza is my Business” is told through the eyes and nose of the most unlikely of P-Doggy protagonists, Lucky. Number Eleven revolves around one solo dog’s adventure. Thats right – an entire issue from the point-of-view of Hawkeye’s Pizza Pup. A challenging endeavor for any artist, yet what David Aja does in this issue is pure genius.
In this whodundogonit detective comic, Pizza Dog uses his keen senses to track down a murderer. This is where the talented Aja, as illustrator, and Matt Hollingsworth, in colors, bring this story to life. Aja illustrates this comic like he’s a writer/illustrator all in one. The story is told through different smells and sounds that a dog would pick up on and through the use of diagrams. Believe it or not, this allows more story to be conveyed than one would expect.
Though David Aja does receive an extreme amount of appreciation from this apostle for creating such a stellar issue, the real kudos go to Matt Fraction for giving up the verbal reins and letting him off the leash (sorry, hadda). This being a story told by a dog, only a few key words are understood like “bad,” “come,” “Avengers”, of course, “pizza.” Through this, some of the best panels in the series are narrated through beautiful non-verbal expressions.
The final scene with Clint and Kate Bishop (also Hawkeye) conveys more through a dogs eye than any written word ever could.
Hawkeye #11 is an extremely rare gem of a comic where the creative team is given carte blache to “let the dogs out!” It’s hard to think any other team would have been able to pull this off with out dropping the doggy bag. I mean for the love of God who hates geeks; a few Marvelous guys go on to tell a near-silent story about a pet running around a ratty apartment and (somehow) made it compelling!
Now that’s something worth woofing about.