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COMIC REVIEW: FTN Reviews Hawk the Slayer

June 1st, 2022 by Patrick Ryan Comments

Remember the dark times? Before it was cool to be a nerd and you could only get your fix by watching your VHS copies of your favourite movies until the tape wore out.

Now it seems we are living in some kind of utopia where you have endless sequels to all of your favourite childhood movies and shows.

New instalments of the Star Wars and Star Trek franchises we kind of expected – and have demanded in some cases. Even Battlestar Galactica being remade for a second time has not come as a huge surprise.

We are even getting a new incarnation of Doctor Who, next year, but not before we meet an old face with David Tennant’s return to his most famous role.

However, one cult movie that you would probably be forgiven for expecting to remain in the past was 1980’s Hawk the Slayer.

While it is a film with a sizeable fanbase, it is fair to say nobody was expecting to see it make a return anytime soon.

The fact the entire film is free to watch on YouTube probably tells you everything you need to know about where it ranks in the pantheon of zeitgeist bothering movies.

For those of you who are not familiar with the film, it tells the tale of two brothers Hawk and Voltan The Dark One – no prizes for guessing which one is the bad guy.

I mean, if you christen your kid Voltan The Dark One you are kind of leaving him with few options but to embrace the dark side.

Jack Palance had the time of his life hamming it up as the villain who is determined to steal a powerful sword in the possession of his brother.

Hawk is played by John Terry, no, not that one, but the actor who turned up in The Living Daylights as Felix Leiter.

It is very much a film of its time but it is also rollicking good fun and worth checking out if you have not watched it in a while – you will laugh as much as anything but there are much worse ways to spend 90 minutes.

This comic-book sequel picks up right after the events of the first film and is penned by no less a scribe than Garth Ennis of Preacher, The Boys and The Punisher fame.

The plot is pretty much as you would expect, given the original film ends with a huge sequel-baiting scene.

Now, some 42 years later the sequel finally sees the light of day and it is well worth the wait.

Ennis is very much comic book royalty and he is as good as ever here with a gripping story that does much more than rehash the original.

New characters are also introduced that feel very much like they belong in this universe, rather than being shoehorned in.

The art from Henry Flint deserves every praise as well, his unique style is perfect for this world of sword and sorcery and gives each panel an extra dimension.

While it would be a shame if the saga ends here, if this really the end of the franchise then it could not have been given a better epitaph.

The fifth and final issue of the sequel run is not released until August and, while not to give away the ending, it is not necessarily what you might expect – and all the better for it.

The trade paperback is released next year but if you have the patience of a Voltan, and want it all straight away, nobody would blame you from tracking down this cracking collection from 2000ad publishers Rebellion.

4 out of 5 Nerds

Like Buck Rogers, Paddy is a man out of time. Unlike the inadvertent time traveller, Paddy is usually out of time because he left everything to the last minute. Based in the Middle East, he’s a huge fan of most things sci-fi or fantasy-related.