In Hawkman #1, Carter Hall began an adventure that spans the DC cosmos as he searches through the newly-discovered parts of his past to prevent an apocalyptic threat looming over his future.
And as he searches, Hawkman series writer Robert Venditti will reveal new bits and pieces of Hawkman continuity in the post-"Rebirth"/post-Metal DCU.
Some of the character's previous continuity is still in place, like his rule as an ancient Egyptian prince and his time spent in the Old West. But thanks to some mysteries first introduced in Dark Nights: Metal, there's much more mystery behind the hero's origin and past.
For example In Hawkman #1, Venditti and series artist Bryan Hitch introduced a new twist to Hawkman's history of reincarnations: His rebirths have not only happened on Earth, but have seen him living on other planets (besides being Katar Hol of Thanagar). One of Hawkman's lives was spent on Krypton, where he was called Catar-Ol; another was spent on Rann, where he was Katarhul.
Hawkman #1 also revealed to Hawkman a vision of a dark, apocalyptic future that's connected to his origin. Carter realizes he's the only one who can stop this future threat, but he doesn't quite know how.
And he believes that stopping this threat is connected to his power of reincarnation.
The character's search for answers continues in July 11's Hawkman #2 as Carter finds out there are breadcrumbs left for him to follow. Newsarama talked to Venditti to find out more.
Newsarama: Rob, in Hawkman #1 you introduced a history for Carter Hall that included some new surprises. Are you going to tell the stories of things like Hawkman on Krypton and some of these other teases? Or did you just drop those in there for other writers?
Robert Venditti: Both those things are true. Some things are going to surface in the very immediate future, like as early as issue #2, and some of them will show up a few issues after that. Others are further down the road. So it's a combination of all those things.
Nrama: I assume you've kind of mapped out his new history? And figured out how it plays into the present and future?
Venditti: Definitely. There's a lot of thought and a lot of background that's gone into what we've done here. We're really very excited about where we can take this character and the things that this opens up and the possibilities for story that are going to come out of this.
Nrama: Hawkman #1 also featured the title character experiencing a sort of prophetic vision. This vision is somehow linked to the mysteries about his origin, right?
Venditt: Yes. What he discovered in the first issue is a huge threat that's coming to destroy him and to destroy Earth.
And yes, it links back to his origin.
But the problem with that is, he's been around so long and he's lived so many lives, he doesn't even remember what his origin is.
So now, he's on this adventure in the present to uncover the mystery and the clues that he's left for himself across time so that he can unlock what this threat is.
And he's racing against the clock because that threat is already on its way and he doesn't know how to stop it.
And he doesn't know how he's connected to it.
Nrama: He just knows he's connected to it and it's coming.
Venditt: Right. He's really racing against the clock, and that's a big part of what provides foreword momentum for the series.
Nrama: So can you describe how this kind of drives the series? We've seen some solicitations for upcoming issues, including a trip to Dinosaur Island and a fight between Katar Hol and Carter Hall on Thanagar, which is pretty mind-blowing. So it looks like you're defining Hawkman's new continuity step by step, as he collects clues about his past and this newly discovered threat.
Venditti: That's right. Every issue is a new location and a new discovery. And each propels him into a new location with another new discovery, just following this breadcrumb trail he left for himself across time to stop this threat before it destroys everything.
Nrama: Hawkman's history is also linked to Hawkgirl, but she didn't really play a part in the first issue. Will she play a part in the search as the series go forward?
Venditti: She will, yes. I mean, obviously, she's in other places in the DCU right now. She's obviously in the new Justice League series and there are a lot of plans for her there, which are going to be very exciting. And I encourage people to read them.
But she is a part of Hawkman's history in the same way that Hawkman is a part of hers.
But I also think that it's nice to be able to have the two characters separate for a while and establish who they are as individual characters in absence of each other before we bring them together. Let's build to that moment. Let's make it really impactful, and let's have them see who they are as individuals before we see who they are together.