“Somehow I’m able to skip the next pill… but I can’t quite kick The Hood.”
The Black Hood
issue 7 is the start of a three part story arc entitled “The Lonely Crusade.” Dark Circle Comics are currently releasing the most engaging and invitational of comic books, featuring some of the best creators; The Black Hood
was the first title to launch their series this past year. I joined the Duane Swierczynski and Michael Gaydos story late in the run, actually starting at the issue before this. You could find my review here
. Here, in issue 7, Swierczynski and Gaydos return Greg Hettinger to his roots – Philadelphia.
The Black Hood
is set very much in the real world so there’s an immediate connection and relatability we have to the material. It’s great seeing Greg Hettinger back in Philadelphia and the attention Swierczynski and Gaydos pay to the city is impressive. Reading Terminal Market. Dinic’s.
It was always fun to read classic Marvel comics and recognize familiar places being named, yet there was never much of an effort to actually recreate the city in a believable way. Dark Circle Comics, a New York based publisher, makes every effort to make their titles feel real and The Black Hood
is right at the top.
After a brief stint in rehab, and parting ways with a lethal California girl, Hettinger returns to Philadelphia Highway Patrol – the High Crime Area Division. Welcome back, Frankenstein.
Duane Swierczynski writes The Black Hood
as a modern crime story with a bit of neo-noir for good measure. Hettinger is written as a man doing penance, serving his life sentence in Philadelphia. We don’t see Hettinger don the Hood until much later in the issue when he faces his latest threat – The Crusaders. Similar to Frank Tieri’s The Hangman
, Greg Hettinger/The Black Hood embraces the best aspects of our beloved vigilantes like Batman and The Punisher. In fact, The Black Hood
is so much more. Credit must be given to Swierczynski and Gaydos for infusing each panel with pathos. The themes of addiction fuel The Black Hood
and it’s never treated in a sensationalized way. Greg Hettinger is a real man with pain. He’s out there struggling and it’s through his process that we want to root for him and follow his journey into darkness.
Dark Circle Comics have approached each character and story in a unique way. Many of their writers are novelists and there is a difference in tone and structure. Issue 7 of The Black Hood, while into it’s run, is able to successfully start a new story arc that anyone could pick up and enjoy. It’s rare nowadays to be able to experience that in a comic book and so The Black Hood is an absolute recommendation and pick of the week.
While Howard Chaykin provided the art for The Black Hood issue six, Michael Gaydos is on seven. For those keeping up to date on all things current, you’ll know that he’s the artist and co-creator of Jessica Jones. There’s a familiarity to his Max Comics Alias series and Dark Circle Comics The Black Hood. The textures are very dark and, much like the other series of comic books, seems ripe for adaptation. Imagine that! A Dark Circle Comics universe represented on Netflix!
The Black Hood issue 7 is available now and gets five stars.
THE BLACK HOOD #7
“The Lonely Crusade, Part 1” Greg Hettinger returns to Philadelphia and promises his closest friend, Jessie Dupree, that his hood-wearing vigilante days are over. But it’s a promise he’s going to struggle to keep—especially when a gang calling themselves “The Crusaders” are prowling the City of Brotherly Love, scooping up “undesirables” and asking if they want to be saved… The second action-packed arc of The Black Hood begins here!
Script: Duane Swierczynski
Art: Michael Gaydos, Rachel Deering, Kelly Fitzpatrick
Cover: Francesco Francavilla
Variant Cover: David Mack
On Sale Date: 11/25
32-page, full color comic