RandoMonday: JSA: The Return of Hawkman tpb

Here’s a comic chosen at random from my collection.

JSA: The Return of Hawkman by David S. Goyer & Geoff Johns (writers), Stephen Sandowski, Steve Yeowell, Buzz, Rags Morales, & Michael Bair (pencillers), Michael Bair, Keith Champaigne, Buzz, David Meikis, Paul Neary, & Rob Leigh (inkers), John Kalisz (colorist), Ken Lopez (letterer), Alan Davis, Mark Farmer, & Andrew Robinson (original covers), and Morales & Kalisz (tpb cover)

I think it was because of the shortage of money in 1999 when JSA arrived that caused me to pass on the monthly issues and instead wait for the trades. I enjoyed the first two trades well enough, but it was this collection that made me really like this series. How do you take the Silver Age, post-Crisis, post-Zero Hour Hawkman and fix him? Well, you let Geoff Johns untwist the tangled knot and reshape it into something workable.

However, the first half of the trade features an attack by a new Injustice Gang, but that’s just to soften the JSA up for the world destroying entity of the King of Tears and his acolyte, Johnny Sorrow. Mr. Terrific comes up with a plan to have Jay Garrick Flash punch a hole in the fabric of time/space to send the King back to its dimension. Instead of ending up absorbed by the Speed Force, Jay returns to Earth, but in ancient Egypt, where he meets Prince Khufu, Teth-Adam, and Nabu. While there, he is shown that a Thanagarian spaceship had crash landed and Khufu discovered the secrets of Nth metal. Flash is given an Nth metal gauntlet to take with him back to his time to battle Onimar Synn, who has now conquered Thanagar. Meanwhile, Hawkgirl was transported to Thanager to help return Carter Hall from the Avatar dimension. Once that is done, Hawkman helps the newly arrived JSA take down Synn, but it’s really the connection that Carter and Kendra have with each other via the Nth metal that does the heavy lifting here.

What a great couple of stories, and the creative team did a really good job of transitioning from one story arc to the next, and along the way, sowing seeds for future arcs. Having reread this trade, I’m still a bit confused as to the whole Thanagarian-Carter Hall connection, but if I don’t think about it too much it’s still a really good superhero story bringing back a beloved character (to me at any rate). If you’re a fan of Hawkman, check out this collection and the self-titled series that followed.

PS: I also recommend that you listen to the Comic Geek Speak crew go over the Hawks’ tangled history in episode 989 of their podcast.

 

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