Posts Tagged ‘David Aja’

Hawkeye #22

January 25, 2016

Hawkeye 22Matt Fraction // David Aja
September 2015
*****

Together Kate & Clint save the BK brownstone & its families from the ‘Tracksuit Draculas’ & harlequin hit-man. Fraction & Aja close their outstanding run, adding a gesture to set up next ‘season’. Superlative comics on every level, the sort of collection you can lend to a non-fan of superheroes.

last issue: Hawkeye #21
continued in Hawkeye #1

Hawkeye #21

January 24, 2016

Hawkeye 21Matt Fraction // David Aja
April 2015
****

The Battle of Bed-Stuy! Hawkeye and neighbors defend their brownstone from mobbed-up property developers, using ready-made siege defenses. The stakes of locals v. organized crime give a whole new angle on vigilantism v community activism and on gentrification—all lifted this month by TV’s Daredevil.

last issue: Hawkeye #20
next issue: Hawkeye #22

Hawkeye #19

January 22, 2016

Hawkeye 19Matt Fraction // David Aja
September 2014
*****

Even as they head into the climax, the creators keep experimenting. #19 is mostly silent—but not without words, since the Barton Brothers sign to each other. Hearing has factored into Hawkeye’s character before, but this latest loss plays into the run’s theme of listening to & trusting others.

last issue: Hawkeye #18
next issue: Hawkeye #20

Hawkeye #17

January 20, 2016

Hawkeye 17Matt Fraction // Chris Eliopoulis with David Aja
May 2014
****

To infuriate the impatient, Eliopoulis subs in for Aja. But why complain with the result is delightful? Frac & Elio kid with Hawkeye‘s basic format, recasting its ensemble as funny animals in a TV Christmas special! But thematically it’s on point for the run’s themes of support & teamwork.

last issue: Hawkeye #16
next issue: Hawkeye #18

Hawkeye #15

January 18, 2016

Hawkeye 15Matt Fraction // David Aja
April 2014
****

Aja at his most conventional is still a delight. He falls back on Iron Fist style, hand-to-hand focusing on movement & balance. It makes for a claustrophobic issue, as the gangsters slip past the brownstone’s defenses & do damage to the Barton Brothers! The plot thickens in this Brooklyn noir.

last issue: Hawkeye #14
next issue: Hawkeye #16

Hawkeye #13

January 16, 2016

Hawkeye 1Matt Fraction // David Aja
December 2013
****

Wow, Hawkeye loops back to cover the last four issues (incl. annual) from yet another POV! The blow-up btw Hawkeyes, the neighbor’s funeral, & the fraternal reunion get replayed in linear progression. The art also gets back to classical comics storytelling, modeling a 3×3 grid like Ike’s in office.

last issue: Hawkeye #12
next issue: Hawkeye #14

Hawkeye #11

January 13, 2016

Hawkeye 11Matt Fraction // David Aja
August 2013
*****

Eisner-winner for best single ish, and Aja totally owns it. His schematics render visually the mind of Lucky the Pizza Dog. But Fraction earns the Eisner-nom for ongoing mag by connecting this silent issue to the run on several levels, incl. the dog solving the nieghbor’s murder in #9!

continued in Hawkeye Annual #1
last issue: Hawkeye #10
next issue: Hawkeye #12

Hawkeye #9

January 11, 2016

Hawkeye 09Matt Fraction // David Aja
June 2013
*****

After the unexpectedly linear #8, Frac & Aja reshuffle its timeframe & POV. It’s Valentine’s Day, a perfect date for Bobbi Morse to divorce Clint; for Jess Drew to dump him; & for Tash Romanov to hunt down the gangster’s redheaded moll. But the key scene is the trio’s lecture of his protégé Kate.

last issue: Hawkeye #8
next issue: Hawkeye #10

Hawkeye #8

January 10, 2016

Hawkeye 08Matt Fraction // David Aja with Annie Wu
April 2013
*****

The redheaded femme drags Barton into another encounter with the tracksuit gangsters of “Little Irkutsk”. Delightfully, she gets the evil eye from the other gals in H’s life: Widow, Hawkgirl, Mockingb, & naïve GF Spider-W. Covers to fake romance comics, by Wu, act as exposition and punctuation.

last issue: Hawkeye #7
next issue: Hawkeye #9

Hawkeye #6

January 8, 2016

Hawkeye 06Matt Fraction // David Aja
late February 2013
*****

This take on the Avenger (“Hawkguy” as one neighbor has it) is startlingly innovative. A helical time structure has Barton spend the week pre X-mas in turf war w/ the Russian bros. Aja’s grid runs 6×6, even 7×6, with negative space opening & minimalizing the Mazzuchelli style of scratchy cape comics.

last issue: Hawkeye #5
next issue: Hawkeye #7

also indexed for Feb. ’13
Hawkeye #5
Winter Soldier #13

Hawkeye #3

January 5, 2016

Hawkeye 03Matt Fraction // David Aja
December 2012
*****

Barton romances a redhead who’s linked to the mobsters from #1 (“Bro!”). A high-speed chase over the GWB practically smells of asphalt, & puts the ‘street’ back in street-level vigilante! The sweet cars, trick arrows, sexy styles, the fact that Hawkeye’s been conked out in every ish… this is gorgeous.

last issue: Hawkeye #2
next issue: Hawkeye #4

also indexed for Dec. ’12
Captain America #18
Captain America #19
The Fantastic Four #611
FF #22
Winter Soldier #11

Hawkeye #2

January 4, 2016

Hawkeye 02Matt Fraction // David Aja
November 2012
*****

Hawkeye & his namesake from the Young Avengers steal $ that a criminal circus (shown here as Cirque du Soliel types) stole from organized crime. Aja seems inspired by Steranko’s pop-art layouts, but w/ a 21C graphic angle: see the A+ cover, & a page of Barton slowing time as he draws the bow.

last issue: Hawkeye #1
next issue: Hawkeye #3

also indexed for Nov. ’12
Captain America #17
The Fantastic Four #610
FF #22
Winter Soldier #10

Hawkeye #1

January 3, 2016

Hawkeye 01Matt Fraction // David Aja
October 2012
*****

Hot off the Avengers flick, Marvel enlists Frac & Aja (of Iron Fist) for this low-watt hero’s off-duty adventures. The everyhero defends his Bed-Stuy brownstone from a Russian mob’s gentrification scheme. The art mimic diagrams yet remains dynamic, & the script’s alert to living speech. A masterpiece.

next issue: Hawkeye #2

also indexed for Oct. ’12
Captain America #16
The Fantastic Four #609
FF #21
Winter Soldier #9

Secret Avengers #18

December 20, 2015

Secret Avengers 18Warren Ellis // David Aja
December 2011
*****

Backed by a rotating crew of A-list artists, Ellis is distilling the modern superspy trend into a stiff shot of comics. For #18, Cap’s kooky quartet displays Shang-Chi to far better effect than Brubaker did. He gives Aja the chance to draw a kung fu fight in an Escher dimension. Gorgeous.

last issue: Secret Avengers #17
next issue: Secret Avengers #19

also indexed for Dec. ’11
Annihilators: Earthfall #2 of 4
Captain America & Bucky #623
FF #10
FF #11

Secret Avengers #5

October 15, 2015

Secret Avengers 05Ed Brubaker // David Aja & Michael Lark
November 2010
***

Bru reunites with his art partner on Gotham CentralDD, the underrated Michael Lark—whose realism classes up the joint. Aja also contributes a touch of Steranko to this spy-fi origin story. One of Nicky Fury’s robot duplicates had gained sentience, & now works for a shadowy anti-SHIELD conspiracy.

last issue: Secret Avengers #4
next issue: Secret Avengers #6

also indexed for Nov. ’10
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #2 of 9
Captain America #610: Bucky Barnes
The Fantastic Four #583
Steve Rogers: Super-Soldier #3 of 4
The Thanos Imperative #4 of 6

Captain America #600

September 14, 2015

Captain America 600a-plot: Ed Brubaker // Jackson Guice with David Aja, Raphael Albaquerque, Mitch Breitweiser, & Howard Chaykin
b-plot:  Roger Stern // Kalman Andrasofszky
c-plot: Mark Waid // Dale Eaglesham
August 2009
a-plot: ***
b-plot: *****
c-plot: ****

Dubious accounting allows Marvel to claim that #600 follows #50. It checks in w/ all the plots, acting as a friendly prologue to next month’s resurrection. Yep, Sharon Carter suspects that she didn’t gun her BF down after all! Ironically, this ish means to memorialize the hero, but only the strong back-ups succeed. On an Astro City periphery, Stern draws on 9/11 by casting Bernie Rosenthal (his Cap run’s romantic foil) as a refugee from NYC after the hero’s assassination.

continued in Captain America: Reborn #1 of 6
last issue: Captain America #50
next issue: Captain America #601

also indexed for Aug. ’09
Daredevil #119
Dark Reign: Fantastic Four #4 of 5
Guardians of the Galaxy #15
Nova #26
War of Kings #4 of 6
War of Kings: Ascension #3 of 4

Daredevil #116

November 23, 2014

Daredevil 116Ed Brubaker // David Aja
April 2009
*****

Tho’ atypical, this may be the best issue of Ed B’s DD run. Aja subs for Lark, less cinematic & more comic in his layouts. He elevate the best-of-run script: a one-off on ninjas v. Kingpin, whose rage is as the ocean. Bru writes the villain’s voice far better than he does the mag’s mopey protag.

last issue: Daredevil #115
next issue: Daredevil #117

also indexed for Apr. ’09
Guardians of the Galaxy #10
Nova #22
War of Kings: Darkhawk #1 of 2

Daredevil #88

October 24, 2014

Daredevil 088Ed Brubaker // David Aja
October 2006
****

Supporting actor Foggy Nelson, revealed alive in #87, gets the spotlight as he assumes a new (secret) ID. The creative team starts Iron Fist next month, but Aja’s style is nearly unrecognizable. There, he’ll build on Lark’s deft approach; here, he’s fuller, more atmospheric, like a Bronze Age b&w.

last issue: Daredevil #87
next issue: Daredevil #89

also indexed for Oct. ’06
Annihilation #1 of 6
Astonishing X-Men #16
Civil War #4 of 7

The Immortal Iron Fist #16

December 8, 2010

Matt Fraction // David Aja
August 2008
*****

Few comic book runs open up character like Immortal has—& in under 20 issues! Fraction calls Aja back for a superb final issue. On one page, IF simply meditates! More generally, Rand turns his financial empire into a charitable trust. It generally points a way forward, not just for IF but for the creative collab.

last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #15
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #17

also indexed for Aug. ’08

The Immortal Iron Fist #13

December 1, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja, Kano, & Tonci Zonjic
May 2008
****

Bru & Frac pull a superb bait-&-switch: this arc isn’t about a kung fu tourney at all, it’s about a revolution! The warriors join IF & help to defend heaven from terrorists! Craziest stake: will Fist archfoe Steel Serpent fight with them or against them? Aja, sadly, is nearly MIA & sadly missed.

continued from The Immortal Iron Fist: Orson Randall & the Green Mist of Death #1 of 1
last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #12
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #14

The Immortal Iron Fist #12

November 28, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja, Kano, & Javier Pulido
February 2008
*****

Bru & Frac transform pulp fiction into meaningful drama. The kung fu contest is a screen for a feminist, anti-royalist celestial revolution! Rand’s father, like his adopted father Randall, wins by refusing to fight. Even a substitute artist can’t detract from this brilliant issue.

continued in The Immortal Iron Fist: Orson Randall & the Green Mist of Death #1 of 1
last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #11
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #13

The Immortal Iron Fist #11

November 27, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja & Kano
January 2008
****

Immortal‘s long, strong second arc just keeps building! Its fifth issue sees the villains triumphant. Davos, arch-foe to both Danny Rand & his father, wins a round in the kung fu tourney & earns a flashback. And the Heroes for Hire can’t stop HYDRA & their supersonic transdimensional train!

last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #10
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #12

also indexed for Jan. ’08
Astonishing X-Men #23

The Immortal Iron Fist #10

November 26, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja & Kano
December 2007
****

The title character is MIA this ish: a ballsy move. Check Annual #1 for his whereabouts & enjoy another round of the mag’s supernatural kung fu tournament! A pair of century-old plans build steam, one by HYDRA & one by a cabal of Fists. Aja’s partnered w/ Kano, whose flashback provides the action.

continued from The Immortal Iron Fist Annual #1
last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #9
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #11

The Immortal Iron Fist #9

November 23, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja & Scott Koblish
November 2007
****

In a twist, the whole kung fu tourney is a red herring! Danny Rand’s a pawn in a conspiracy set up by his mentor, the late Orson Randall, & Danny’s father. Thus, a tertiary plot flashes back to Rand Sr.’s training while the present sees Dan exit thru a steampunk portal, bound for Paris.

continued in The Immortal Iron Fist Annual #1
last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #8
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #10

also indexed for Nov. ’07
The Immortal Iron Fist Annual #1

The Immortal Iron Fist #8

November 21, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja & Roy Allan Martinez
October 2007
*****

In just 1 year, Bru & Frac have enough new ideas for a long run. The Shangri La home of the Iron Fist is merely 1 of 7 interlocking cities, & the stars have aligned for a kung fu tournament btw. immortal weapons! But Rand’s old foe Davos schemes on Earth as well as heaven.

last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #7
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #9

also indexed for Oct. ’07
Astonishing X-Men #22

The Immortal Iron Fist #6

November 19, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja & Russ Heath
July 2007
****
Tho’ the gunplay drowns out the kung fu, this battle in a skyscraper is a kick. And in all the ways that count, the Heroes for Hire lose: Orson Randall, the last Iron Fist, sacrifices himself (a la Ben Kenobi) & Danny’s lawyer is kidnapped! Next up: an old-fashioned martial arts tournament.

last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #5]
[next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #7]

also indexed for Jul. ’07

The Immortal Iron Fist #5

November 18, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja & Travel Foreman
June 2007
*****

WW1 vet Randall refused to fight in a tourney of 7 Immortal Weapons, earning the emnity of a crane goddess. Now he gives Danny the kung fu diary, a legacy of the Fist. This expansion of the IF mythos into pulp history is better than Brubaker’s revival of Bucky! Is Fraction’s contribution the humor?

last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #4
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #6

The Immortal Iron Fist #4

November 17, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja, Sal Buscema, & Travel Foreman
April 2007
*****

This mag links ’00s Marvel to its ’10s future. As Danny Rand grew out of ’70s kung fu, so Orson Randall is a riff on ’20s pulp: born, like Tarzan, in a faraway land. His plutocrat father built a secret ‘hydraulic subway’ beneath NYC! He mentors Rand in new techniques like channelling chi thru his pistols.

last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #3
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #5

also indexed for Apr. ’07

The Immortal Iron Fist #3

November 16, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja, Travel Foreman & Russ Heath
February 2007
****

For stretches, Aja’s art is a variation on Maleev’s Daredevil, esp. the backgrounds. Then BAM! he’ll lay out a beautiful page. I dig the toon-eyes on IM’s mask! Great momentum too, as HYDRA undermines Rand Corp & hunts a 1920s Fist, led by IF nemesis Davos (AKA Steel Serpent) & mystical crane women.

last issue:  The Immortal Iron Fist #2
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #4

also indexed for Feb. ’07
Astonishing X-Men #20
Nextwave, Agents of HATE #11

The Immortal Iron Fist #2

November 15, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja, Travel Foreman, & John Severin
December 2006
****

Secondary artists help Frac & Bru elaborate on a history of the Iron Fist—c.f. a girl in 16C China who keeps pirates at bay! And the US doughboy (rough pencils of trenches by ’60s bullpen vet Severin) is still alive—immortal! His presence in NYC blocks the flow of IF chi, to Danny’s consternation.

last issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #1
next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #3

also indexed for Dec. ’06
Astonishing X-Men #18
Civil War #6 of 7
Nextwave, Agents of HATE #9

The Immortal Iron Fist #1

November 14, 2010

Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction // David Aja & Travel Foreman
November 2008
*****

Kung fu hero gets an ’00s revival after his recent Daredevil cameos. Fist always had pulpy roots—his origin is a riff on ’70s Batman—but this debut ish elaborates on the concept by chronicling the legacy of Iron Fists. Also, a 21st century Chinese corp is a front for HYDRA, a modern Yellow Peril.

next issue: The Immortal Iron Fist #2

also indexed for Nov. ’08
Astonishing X-Men #17
Civil War #5 of 7
Nextwave, Agents of HATE #8