So begins "Final Justice," the concluding arc of the illustrious Hawkman run started by Rob Venditti and Bryan Hitch in 2018. He visited planets all across the universe only to then go on a voyage into the Microverse. When readers thought things couldn't get any more bonkers, Hall and his team took a detour into the afterlife. Now, Venditti and his collaborators return the character to his roots with the Justice Society of America. Thankfully, it only takes but a page or two to realize that is the best possible direction for this series' finale.
In this life Hawkman has focused on his reincarnation—the tortures of living one life after the next while suffering throughout each one across millennia. It was evident early on that the creative team wanted to deconstruct this aspect of the character and examine it in a whole new light. Now, as "Final Justice" begins, they've stripped that plot device away completely, forcing the eponymous hero into his most unfamiliar situations yet.
You see, Carter Hall is on his last life and he's returned to the 1940's to live it and fight crime with the JSA, which means plenty of fun cameos are in store, including Alan Scott, Jay Garrick, The Sandman, and Wildcat. It's a rather poignant plot device, taking the characters back to the moment he first burst onto the scene—almost as if they're getting the band back together for one last ride. There's even a moment where Carter and Shae look into a mirror and see older versions of themselves, revealing they appear to others as they did in their Golden Age introductions from 1940.
There's a fun introduction at the end, setting up a villain for the last two issues. On the surface, Hawkman #27 may seem like a pretty run-of-the-mill book. Chock-full of cameos and exciting set pieces, things move forward at a tolerable pace. As I've learned by now, however, Hawkman has been a masterclass in subversion, and the unexpected will soon appear in your mind's eye.
Years into this run, Venditti keeps it fresh in each new issue as he and his numerous collaborators cover nearly every genre on God's green earth. Even though Hawkman #27 features some of the oldest comic book characters ever created, this issue offers a fine balance between the new and the classic, reintroducing classics with the ample energy. As the title arrives at the doorstep of its penultimate issue next month before wrapping in November, the only unfortunate thing about this series is that it's ending comes far too soon. With zero disrespect to the legends who came before him, Venditti's Hawkman run is one of the best comic book runs featuring Carter Hall and his supporting cast ever printed—it's certainly a favorite with this critic.
Published by DC Comics
On September 8, 2020
Written by Robert Venditti
Art by Fernando Pasarin
Inks by Oclair Albert and Wade Von Grawbadger
Colors by Jeromy Cox
Letters by Rob Leigh