One of the sassiest heroes in Marvel Comics is back in action in Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2. First, it was a missing sister, then a missing ring, and now a missing child? What next? Kate’s endless ability to find trouble continues thanks to writer Marieke Nijkamp, penciller Enid Balam, inker Oren Junior, colorists Brittany Peer & Chris Peter, and letterer VC’s Joe Caramagna.
The timing of Hawkeye: Kate Bishop could not be better. Fans are actively seeking out new material thanks to the most recent Disney+ series (which fans of either Hawkeye will surely adore). In both instances, we’re getting a heavy dose of Kate Bishop charm…or sass, depending on how you feel like labeling it.
Last we saw, Kate had been lured to a suspiciously lovely hotel under the guise of helping her estranged sister. Given her family, she naturally knew that it was a trap. Yet if there’s one thing Kate can’t resist, it’s checking a situation out.
Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2 picks up right where the last issue left us, which means we’re knee-deep in Bishop family drama, two separate investigations, and a Kate very intent on finding excuses to avoid heading home.
Kate Bishop’s series are always the perfect find for those looking for a light read that is guaranteed to bring laughter. Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2 is no exception to that rule, as Marieke Nijkamp lets Kate’s bright personality fly free. In this instance, flying free means throwing herself headfirst into a strange situation — with no backup. Well, that’s not entirely true. She has Lucky, after all.
For those that need a refresher: Kate Bishop is currently working as a private eye. This fact is made evident as Kate notices dozens of little details of the scene. Details like this are very helpfully pointed out to us readers (with a heavy dash of commentary, of course).
That’s the refreshing thing about Kate: you never have to wonder for long about what is in her head. She’ll quickly make a point of telling you even if you don’t want to hear it. Admittedly, this makes the whole situation with her sister all the more entertaining and awkward.
Despite the lighter tones that come with a series such as this, there is no denying that the stakes have been steadily rising throughout Kate’s investigation. It’s difficult to predict how severe it’ll get before the end, but we just know that Kate will somehow find herself in the center regardless.
Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2 is so very nostalgic for Hawkeye fans. Every spec of detail emanates with the humor and style that fans know her for. It’s an impressive feat, come to think of it. Enid Balam (pencils) and Oren Junior (inks) clearly understand her character.
They also know the fans well, as evidenced by a sneaky little Jeff the Land Shark cameo (did you spot it?). Little moments like this give so much personality to a series, so it is a delight to see them embracing it.
The colors are another element of this series that set the tone. Brittany Peer and Chris Peter portray a vibrant palette, yet there’s no missing that iconic purple suit, even with those bold colors pulling our attention elsewhere. Out of all the highlights worth mentioning here (and there are a lot), what is possibly most impressive is their mastery of subtle blending for backgrounds. It makes what would otherwise be a dull scene at night turn into something striking.
You can tell that VC’s Joe Caramagna had a bit of fun with the lettering here. It helps that there is so much to work with! First, we’ve got Kate’s ever-present banter, plus her commentary on investigations. Then we’ve got dozens of other details, from sound effects to blurred out conversations — the works. Oh! And don’t forget the frequent text chats with the exceptional America. Yet Caramagna perfectly fits everything on the page without it ever feeling crowded.
Hawkeye: Kate Bishop #2 is a whirlwind of a read, throwing Kate from one investigation to the next. It’s almost like they’re trying to distract her (or like she’s trying to stay distracted). Yet the character and charm shine through all that chaos, leaving fans with a captivating read.