Review by: keith7198

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Avg Rating: 2.5
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Art and cover by ROB LIEFELD

Size: 32 pages
Price: 2.99

“Hawk and Dove” was one of the biggest surprises when DC announced their New 52 lineup of titles. It’s been a while since the pair have had their own book and I was looking forward to grabbing this title. It’s to bad that what we get is a mediocre and ultimately forgettable first issue. Writer Sterling Gates starts the book with a rather abrupt one page introduction to a self-described “science terrorist” named Alexander Quirk. Quirk has a cargo plane filled with genetically enhanced zombies that he plan’s to use in his attack on Washington D.C. Hawk and Dove are aboard the plane attempting to stop it before Quirk’s plan can be carried out.

The first half of Gates’ story is focused on Hawk and Dove’s fight to gain control of the plane and save the city. The problem is none of the action is all that exciting. Gates seems to be going for a cinematic, almost Die-Hard styled moment as the plane takes dead aim at the Washington Monument. But the entire sequence falls flat mainly due to bland structuring and some generic and sometimes silly dialogue that’s sprinkled not just in the first half of the book, but through it all. The second half of the issue tries hard at character development but even it lacks the genuine or natural emotion needed to make the characters interesting. Some of the conversations seem so contrived as Gates tries to lead us to the one interesting dynamic between Hawk and Dove. I was also taken back by the decision to put so much forced and pointless profanity throughout the book. Much of it felt out of place and some served no other purpose than to try and make Hawk look angry and tough. It didn’t work.

Another problem is Rob Liefeld’s art. Don’t buy this issue under the delusion that Liefeld’s style has changed in any way. We get the same problems here that we get in much of Liefeld’s work. We get many of the exact same facial expressions throughout the entire book and during more dialogue driven character moments this really hurts in capturing the intended emotions. But what surprised me was how under-drawn the action pages were. While Liefeld’s style is undeniable, he usually is able to draw good action scenes. But here the fight scenes look shortchanged and with the exception of a couple of panels, the backgrounds look almost completely neglected. This isn’t a terrible looking book, but even if you are a Liefeld fan you’ll notice this isn’t his best work.

I guess you could drop “Hawk and Dove” #1 into the catagory of a dissappointment. I had concerns going in but I really did expect a stronger issue. The story doesn’t deliver and it’s hurt by really mediocre artwork. There’s a lot of potential for these characters but this series has clearly gotten off on the wrong foot.

Story: 2 - Average
Art: 2 - Average

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