SPOILER WARNING: This article contains spoilers for#3 by Robert Venditti and Bryan Hitch, on sale now.
As much as we talk about who Hawkman is, the character has usually been defined by who he once was. For a person who continuously reincarnates over and over throughout time, it’s hard to say who Carter Hall is really supposed to be. Is he a prince from ancient Egypt, a knight from the Middle Ages, a gunfighter from the Old West, an alien space cop or an archaeologist? Carter Hall’s investigation in Robert Venditti and Bryan Hitch’s Hawkman series has forced the reader to rethink their notions about the character and discover the truth right along with him.
Just three issues in, and Carter has already taken quite the trip down memory lane. At least, they would be memories if he could actually remember everything about his past lives. So far, he has: seen a vision of a dark future to come, learned that he may be much older than he thought and discovered that he loses memories each time he reincarnates. His adventures have also led him to physical confrontations against his former selves — first Prince Khufu of Egypt and now Katar Hol of Thanagar. It’s all led to a new understanding of Hawkman’s most confusing pieces of continuity.
Discovery On Dinosaur Island
In Hawkman #3, Carter continues his mission to learn more about his past, and we finally see the clues start to fall into place. He gained possession of an ancient scepter that led him to his next destination following his fight with Khufu last issue. His next stop? Dinosaur Island. Carter quickly encounters a flock of Feitherans upon arrival, a tribe of birdlike creatures who have deep roots in Hawkman continuity. They have been tasked with guarding the secrets of the island, but, as it turns out, it was Carter Hall (or at least one of his past lives) who tasked these warriors with guarding said secret.
Memory can be a tricky thing and, as Hawkman learns in this issue, there is far more that he has forgotten over his many year of reincarnation. He discovers a cave filled with advanced technology once he is finally able to investigate the secret of the Feitheran Aerie. Carter finds is a symbol that matches the one on his chest and soon discovers that his Egyptian staff is somehow compatible with the tech in the cave. Hawkman uses the artifact to unlock a planetarium of constellations from Thanagarian mythology.
Based on the hawk symbols and the smooth architecture inside the cave, it’s worth wondering if this is, in fact, where the Thanagarian ship that crashed in the Egyptian desert long ago has been stored all this time. Somehow, it’s all connected, but before any more answers can be provided, Carter is whisked away to meet another one of his former lives.
The final page of the issue reveals that Hawkman has somehow been transported back to Thanagar, where he is confronted by wingman Katar Hol, who is there to arrest him at gunpoint. What this incarnation has to offer Carter has yet to be revealed, but it looks like Hawkman is about to delve head first into the most confusing era in the character’s history.
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