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When Hawkeye Had His Leg Broken For Him To Get His First Miniseries

This is "In The Spotlight So Clear," a feature where we spotlight times in comics where characters need to be cleared out of the way to make room for a new status quo. Like, for instance, you want to introduce a new Captain Superhero, you might want to first get rid of the previous Captain Superhero. Stuff like that.

Today, we look at how Roger Stern cleared a path for Hawkeye to get his own miniseries!

When Marvel began to do miniseries on a regular basis in the early 1980s, people were a bit unsure about how to handle them. While nowadays, miniseries are often launched whether they fit into continuity or not, back then, most of them were specifically intended to be part of the continuity of the regular series from which the character launched.

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A perfect example of this was how Roger Stern came up with a way to get Hawkeye separated from the Avengers so he could get his own miniseries.

In Avengers #231 (by Stern, Al Milgrom and Joe Sinnott), the Avengers respond to an attack on a SHIELD base by Plantman, who has created plant-based duplicates of almost all of the SHIELD agents on the base. The Avengers show up and they split up and after the initial attack is stopped, Plantman has the duplicates merge into one giant being and attack and in the attack, a ceiling is knocked down on Hawkeye...

In the next issue, we see Hawkeye being fit for a cast...

The Avengers then rule to temporarily add Eros of Titan, who traveled to Earth to join the Avengers, to the team in place of the injured Hawkeye...

Hawkeye is angry about being sidelined, but he contacts someone at Cross Enterprises, the company where he moonlighted as their head of security...

In the following issue (guest layouts by John Byrne), we see Hawkeye contacting one of his co-workers with a secretive plan...

The plan is put into place in the next issue (Milgrom back on layouts), where Hawkeye debuts his Sky-Cycle, which allows him to fight crime even with a broken leg...

So the storyline served to both introduce the Sky-Cycle but also to get Hawkeye temporarily off of the team, which set him up for his adventures in the Hawkeye miniseries by Mark Gruenwald and Brett Breeding...

That miniseries famously ended with Hawkeye marrying Mockingbird...

and once the miniseries was over, they headed right back to the pages of the Avengers in Avengers #239...

Very nicely done by Stern. It didn't hurt that his editor on the Avengers was Mark Gruenwald, the guy who wrote and drew the Hawkeye miniseries.

Okay, so that's it for this installment of In the Spotlight So Clear! Feel free to suggest other examples to me at brianc@cbr.com!

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