Each day in November, I will read and review/discuss/whatever one comic taken from a box of some of my childhood comics. Today, it’s Darkhawk #19.
The Nostalgia November archive can be found here.
Darkhawk #19 by Danny Fingeroth and Mike Manley has no cover. Well, my copy has no cover. It hasn’t had a cover for so long that I don’t recognise the cover to this issue honestly. I have no idea when or how the cover got ripped off, but I’m used to seeing Toad’s ugly face on the first page splash acting as the cover. Rereading this issue for the first time in a long time, I struck by how bad it is. Bad in a way that tells me why I never got into Darkhawk despite his darker, Spider-Man-esque character seeming like something my younger self would like on the surface. No, this comic pretty much killed Darkhawk for me, I believe, because it is very, very, very bad. Bad in that obvious sort of way where you wonder what the hell happened to allow this comic to be produced.
First, the art… cluttered, horribly influenced by the artists that would found Image as Manley throws in lots of little lines everywhere to suggest more detail. Characters are posed awkwardly, the actions sequences are nearly incomprehensible, and Spider-Man doesn’t look cool… how can Spider-Man not look cool?
The writing… I’m not sure what the point of this story is. There’s this armour that’s kind of like Darkhawk’s and people want it, including a guy named Portal, the US government, and the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. Why? Don’t know. What does the armour do? No idea. Should they fight over it? I guess? Spider-Man and Darkhawk show up to help things possibly and there’s a lot of fighting and the issue ends with Sleepwalker showing up, wanting the armour… so I guess the armour is important somehow?
There are no motivations explained for most of the characters, the fight scene is there because, well, you need a fight scene, and I’m left with an empty feeling as I quickly forget what I just read since it’s not the sort of comic you remember five minutes later, hence the very short post. It’s a race against time before this comic goes back into the box and I forget all about it. That will be nice.